Recently, Taylor Swift wrote an article about what she thinks about the future of the music industry. I read it and it was interesting but there was one part that really stuck out to me even though I don't want a business in music. It was something that I've been trying to apply in my life since I read it. Taylor wrote:
"My hope for the future, not just in the music industry, but in every young girl I meet... is that they all realize their worth and ask for it."
Not realising my worth is a fault that I never really realised in myself. Okay, that's a lie, I definitely recognised it in myself, I just didn't do anything about it because it seemed like a difficult thing to do. I'm not saying that realising your worth means that you think you're amazing and you demand that everyone's nice to you or something like that, it's not that at all. It's realising what you deserve from people and realising that you deserve to be respected.
It's difficult to ask for your worth. You don't literally say "hey, you're being rude and I deserve for you to treat me like this, and I need to know this, and you need to be this". Well, if you want to then go ahead. I'm not saying that I know exactly how you ask for your worth because I'm not really sure myself but I am recognising where I need to ask for it. It's with some friends and it's with my family sometimes. I think I've spent a lot of time treating some people so nicely that they're beginning to walk all over me a little bit. They don't mean to do it, I never really realised it, but it's just a subconscious thing that sometimes it's okay to make fun of me, or sometimes it's okay not to listen to me and what I'm trying to tell them. I don't know what to do about a lot of it yet but I'm trying to work it out.
There are just certain things you deserve from people. If any of you watch Carrie Hope Fletcher on YouTube, you'll know what I'm speaking about but for those of you who don't, I'll explain it here. You deserve to know where you stand with someone. It's not okay for somebody to just stop acting the way they used to with you without giving you an explanation. It's not okay for somebody to stop speaking to you without an explanation. It's not okay for someone to break up with you or fall out with you without an explanation. It's not okay for them to not explain how they're feeling because they're scared to have the conversation and leave you in the dark worrying. And yes, you can sit them down and say 'Where do I stand with you?' but if they've treated you that way then they're taking your power away from you. If somebody has treated you that way, you decide where you stand with them. You don't have to be completely devoted to them but you don't have to stay completely away from them. Both of those things are just going to hurt you. If you care about them then be there for them when they need you but draw the line at how much power they have over you. And if it is best to just stay away then do. Just realise that if they are keeping you in the dark then you decide where you stand with them because you deserve that.
It could be with your family, especially parents. In my opinion, a lot of parents demand respect so much and they forget that it's actually important to respect you as the child as well. If you mess up your room then you're in huge trouble, if they mess up theirs it's okay. If you're watching something on TV, it's okay for them to tell you to do something but if they're watching something you have to wait until they're done. I understand that you should respect your parents, of course you should, and I'm not sure that respect should be equal exactly but I think the gap should be a lot smaller. I think parents forget to give you credit. I know for a fact that some kids cook, clean, act with good behaviour, never have attitude- and they still don't get rewarded and they only get noticed when they do something wrong and that isn't fair. If you work hard at home, if you're a good kid, you deserve to be respected. I think it's hard to ask for your worth from parents because they'll just say you're being disrespectful. I haven't quite figured that one out yet but I know that you can always have the conversation with them. It's worth a try.
You also deserve to be treated the way you treat someone. You can give people your all and care about them so much and always listen to their problems and what they have to say and there's nothing wrong with that at all. Another one of my favourite singers Hunter Hayes has a song called 'Love Too Much' and it basically says that you can't love somebody too much and you can't care about them too much but they can treat you less than well enough. Not that any of my best friends treat me badly at all, they're the best, but today I was telling one of my friends about something and they literally just didn't listen or make any attempt to listen at all, they looked around the room, they didn't respond to what I said, they just changed the subject straight away. I'm not angry and I got over it quickly enough but it was then that I realised maybe I really do need to start asking for my worth.
For example in your life, if you're always listening to this one friend's problems and then you talk to them about one of your problems and they don't respond then you might blame yourself and say 'I was too nice to them'. I don't think that's true, I don't think you can be too nice to somebody and care about somebody too much. I think the problem lies with them more than you and you can't do anything about that other than sit them down and tell them how you're feeling. I'm going to be honest, I'm not brave enough to do that and I honestly don't think it's a really bad problem right now. If it really got to a point where it seemed like nobody cared about my thoughts and opinions then I'd talk to them but it's not like that yet. I'm going to stop being such a pushover, I'm going to start considering myself a little bit more and ask for my worth and that isn't being vain or self-centered, that's being respectful to yourself, as respectful as you'd like others to be.
I think overall you deserve to be respected in so many ways. Realise your worth and ask for it. Realise that there's no reason why you shouldn't be treated the way you treat people. Realise that you shouldn't have the power taken away from you in a relationship because you're so devoted to them. Realise that if you do something good, you deserve to be credited. Realise that you deserve to know the truth. Realise what kind of person you are and be proud of that and don't lose that. You deserve respect from people and never believe that you don't.
Here are a couple of Carrie's videos that also inspired this chapter: