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Jude's avatar

How do you deal with feeling underappreciated?

Asked by Jude (32134points) October 18th, 2011

You try your best to do for others and it goes unnoticed. It tends to make you think, do people even care? How do you not get to the point to where you don’t give a shit (jaded much)?

Acknowledging that I’ve helped would be nice. I don’t need a cookie.

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27 Answers

smilingheart1's avatar

If people were wood stoves, @Jude, some of them could take in a whole lot of timber and never give you much heat back. Maybe just a lot of smoke and they would need frequent poking! In other words, sometimes we can rub ourselves raw trying to evoke responses out of others that befit what we feel we put into the relationship and the more you give, it seems the more you can give.

I had that kind of relationship with my birth family. Still do to this day!!! But, the difference is I have found my own center of gravity relationally speaking. I did that by making my chief aim to do what is the right thing by each person with as good of a heart as possible and then “leave it with them.” I gradually got the strength up to be less of a “jellie” and just state the facts as I see them, respond as I feel is best and kindest and walk away free from each encounter. YES! I wish they could respond back with lots of warmth too but sometimes people are just too caught up in their own selfish space to look around and see how much their life and happiness actually depends on others being there for them.

I have no idea what your specific topic is but I have found the bottom line is “You can’t please everybody, so you got to please yourself”—and I modify that by saying I am responsible for my own feelings.

mattbrowne's avatar

Well, once in a while just don’t do the stuff you do for others and wait till people notice that something is missing. Then have a good conversation.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Years ago I got to the place where I learned to do things because they were right or because I wanted to do them, and without any expectation of reward or recognition. If I got some sort of recognition, that was great, but I learned to never expect it.

Scooby's avatar

Just plod on, you don’t get brownie points for breaking your back……
I think we’re all taken for granted at some point, that’s life.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Jude Just do what you know is right. The good people will let you know. And thanks, I’ll keep your thought in mind next time someone helps me out and I’ll let them know I appreciate their help.

Pandora's avatar

Sometimes people do show appreciation. They just don’t verbalize it and think its nicer to show someone instead through their actions.
You may feel that they are not doing enough to show you but some people just aren’t good at showing it.
However if its work, than I would sit down with my supervisor and have a talk with them and find out what he thinks of my performance. If he thinks its so so and I know I’m doing more than everyone else, than I will either scale back on what I am doing or find another place to go.

blueiiznh's avatar

@Jude I have battled this one my whole life. Sorry to hear any efforts you gave/give go without feedback. I know the suckage and WTF feeling that occurs.
Not saying that this is what you are doing, but these are a few things to keep in mind.
Some people just don’t know how to show appreciation for a good act.
Some people are “takers” and will use your good natured giving ways all they can.
Don’t do things because you expect appreciation and recognition at the end. Do it for the reward of doing it. Do things knowing it rewards you just doing it and the pat on the back is not the reason you did it.
Accept that there may be no appreciation given. Remember it the next time to help determine if you want to give to that person or organization.
Don’t let a persons inability or ignorance of your efforts jade the reason why you help others.
Be aware of the “takers”.
If it is work related, then it is part of work and you may never get the kudos you think match the effort. I kick my ass on working hard and at a high standard because that is my value. It does suck when there is zero feedback or worse, someone else takes credit.
Know inside you that you are doing it because it is how you work.

boxer3's avatar

Every once in a while,
I’ll rant to my best friend about human beings
and how people treat eachother.
She’ll rant.
I realize ultimately recognized or not,
IMO I’m a good person and
do the things I do
not for recognition though it is nice sometimes
but more so because that’s just who I am….

wundayatta's avatar

Bah. I don’t expect any appreciation. I say you help people because you want to, not because you expect anything in return. If you get appreciation, that’s great, but that’s not why you do stuff. I’m not really used to appreciation, so when I do get it, it’s embarrassing.

I guess you could say I deal with not being appreciated by not expecting to be appreciated. Appreciation is nice, but not necessary. If someone does appreciate me, I might be more inclined to like them, but it won’t keep me from doing the things I think I should be doing.

marinelife's avatar

You spend some time appreciating yourself. You cut down on what you do for others who are not appreciative.

Hibernate's avatar

I don’t really care how the rest see me. Be it under or above my limits I don’t care. Sooner or later they realize they were wrong when they made their assumptions.

YoBob's avatar

Well, I generally shut the heck up and continue doing my job with the knowledge that I don’t get paid to be appreciated.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Self love. I remind myself that feeling unappreciated is my ego talking, not my true self.

Jude's avatar

@wundayatta I am tapped out from helping and feel guilty if don’t.

wundayatta's avatar

@Jude Wow! You’re in a pickle there. Seriously, let yourself have a break. You’re no good to anyone tapped out. As they say at McDonalds, you deserve a break today. And tomorrow. And for as long as you need it. It’s your life. You get to choose how to spend it. Don’t let me stop you (or anyone stop you) if you like to feel guilty but in my experience, an overload of guilt can nearly kill you.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@Jude You need to gain awareness, prior to saying “Yes”, then. If you are already busy, you need to learn the power of “No”. Then you need to let it go. No more thinking about it.

JLeslie's avatar

Well, this is something I dealt with a lot in the last ten years. It took me a really really long time, but the end result is I do less for those who fail to recognize my efforts. I am not looking for anyone to be gushing over me and how wonderful I am. A nice thank you is plenty. But, even more than that I don’t want to be told I never do enough, when I do things all the time and think about others all the time. Slap me in the face like that, and now I very quickly get to not giving too much of a damn about helping that person out.

I also have started to make my schedule the priority, and fit everyone else in if they do. If they don’t too bad. It’s not like I am hard and fast about it. If the other person wants to work together, if there is give and take and appreciation I will be flexible, but if the other person is rigid and demanding, that is what they get back from me now.

You get what you give. The unnappreciative people in our lives need to learn that.

thesparrow's avatar

I’ve started noticing that some of my friends aren’t there for me when I need them; I mean, just to talk (not to do me favors or anything.. I never ask people to do me favors). I have best friends who are there, but only very few of them. I find the only people always willing to listen are those I still know from high school.

This never bothered me before because I didn’t think people have an obligation toward me. But when I tell my friend something and she says ‘I don’t care about what you are saying, leave me alone’ I am drawing the line right there.

YARNLADY's avatar

I stopped measuring my value based what other people think a long time ago. I know when I’ve done something to be proud of and I don’t really need other people to say so.

augustlan's avatar

Know that for all the people who don’t seem to appreciate you, many more of us do. Also keep in mind that those who need our help the most are probably not in a very good place themselves, and are likely very self-absorbed at that time. If you know that what you’re doing helps, and it makes you feel good for doing it, keep right on doing it anyway.

On the other hand, if guilt is causing you to overextend yourself, please find a way to alleviate that guilt. You’ll only burn yourself out, and won’t be able to help yourself, let alone anyone else. Counseling helped me tremendously with my guilt issues. Not that I don’t still have them, but I can at least see them clearly now. {hugs} girlie.

cookieman's avatar

Well, for one thing, I operate under the assumption that no one really gives a shit. yes, jaded much

Failing that, I either A) handle it poorly and lash out (I try to avoid this), or B) withdraw for a bit and have a “me” day (unfortunately, this happens rarely).

So, I’m usually back to assuming no one cares. Meanwhile, I push myself to do more out of guilt.

Fucked up, but apparently I created this monster.

thesparrow's avatar

My family, friends and BF always have my back.. I feel like that. There are a few friends I’ve made that genuinely seem to have a ‘detached’ feeling about them (i.e. they’re not really up for ‘girl talk’). I’m a pretty girly girl so I need my girl talk on a fairly regular basis.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

It only bothers people who care what other people think. I only give what I want. Positive feedback usually makes me give more. Negative feedback, and the person giving it can bite me!

thesparrow's avatar

@Skaggfacemutt I think I take a similar attitude.

LostInParadise's avatar

I become depressed and sulk. I don’t recommend this, but it is the way I am wired. The best antidote for me is to exercise compassion. For someone to ignore, be indignant or be jealous of what I have done marks a shortcoming in that person. I work to accept this and wish that the person will be able to grow out of this behavior.

There is a story I heard of a Tibetan Buddhist monk who had spent several years in a Chinese prison. He was later asked what his greatest concern was during his captivity. He said that he feared most that he would lose his compassion for his captors. This to me is heroic behavior worth emulating.

thesparrow's avatar

I’ll tell you what makes me feel under-f*cking-appreciated.

Breaking someone’s phone by accident and then having them tell you you’re obliged to pay the entire cost of reimbursement.

Sher_King's avatar

Usually I get angry and back off. If you feel like your constant giving isnt paying off, thats only because you are expecting something back from people who cant give back.

So move on and find a mutual ground with someone who gives and takes. Its only going to make you angry about yourself. You are going to think people are taking advantage of you. Thats only because you are letting them too.

I know how you feel :)

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