How much is what you produce worth? This is a question that can be taken many different way in a myriad of circumstances. For example, an attorney values his time enough to charge you for every second that you spend talking to them. Their knowledge and expertise in the area of law is of great worth. However, a stay at home mother who runs a household handles a budget, cares and teaches children is considered less valuable. Since their worth is not linked to a monetary hourly amount society does not express value I their skills. (Sad.)
Most jobs have a set amount that you are paid for a set amount of work you do. In those cases if you do more or less you still get paid the same amount. However, if you are an entrepreneur this doesn’t apply. You have the potential to give more value to others and in turn increase your value as a business. You get out what you put in. In this circumstance a lot of thought goes into the value you produce and how it is priced. If you are someone who is wrestling with self doubt you might undervalue the goods and services you provide. This is based upon your own feelings instead of the feelings of your customers. We are surprised by what other people will pay for. But why? Why do we find less value in our skills and products? Why do we assume what we produce is not worth something? If we put out heart and soul into producing something why do we think others will not see value in that?
To answer this question we must look inside ourselves. What is driving this feeling? Why are we undervaluing ourselves? Whether you are a stay at home mom, a business owner, a craft maker, or a hourly worker, we all need to recognize the value in what we produce.
When I first started this blog I was full of self-doubt. I thought no one would care or find anything useful in what I had to say? We create an imaginary scenario in our head that is completely irrational and we talk ourselves into devaluing our work until we are afraid of producing anything. This is what I did with this blog for a long time. If everyone thought like this nothing would be created. So how do we quite self-doubt?
Recognize your own uniqueness. No one can produce what you produce in the way you produce it. Your ideas, your manner, your talent, your creativity. They are unique to you. Someone might produce something similar, but not exactly the way you do. That uniqueness is what makes your work something of value.
When you undervalue yourself think of what you are trading to remain wallowed in self doubt. You never submit your book idea. You never achieve that raise. You undercharge for the products you create. There are trade-off to these undervaluing actions. After toiling away on a product, taking time from your family, do you really want you give it away for nothing. By never bringing your value to light, your boss gives your raise or promotion to another. By never submitting your book idea you pass on a life long dream. All because you did not find value in yourself and what you produce.
I know it is hard to change this mindset. For me personally, it is a battle. I am making small strides towards recognizing I have something unique to contribute. My work does have value. It is ok to recognize that and ask for compensation. So going forward remember to tell yourself. What I produce has value. What I do has value. I have value.