Lessons from a Recovering Doormat

People, especially DoorMats, often lament about feeling like many people take them for granted. They blame it on others. The truth is, any time you feel taken for granted, you’re allowing yourself to be a victim, which makes you feel powerless.

But you’re not powerless!

It’s your choice to give your power away. Nobody can take you for granted without your permission. I didn’t understand that when I was a DoorMat. “How dare THEY always expect me to do their bidding while they showed little or no appreciation!?!” I’d rant. They dared because I let them. While I continued to feel unappreciated, I still was the go-to person for their favors. I’d occasionally complain but rarely to the person who did it. I was too scared of losing people by speaking up or cutting back on doing favors.

What does taking someone or something for granted mean?

When you take something for granted, you assume it will always be there for you. It becomes a given in your life, a fixture, something you expect won’t change, no matter what you do or don’t do. But it can hurt you down the road. We take loved ones for granted, assuming we’ll always have their support no matter what. Too many people have sad regrets if someone they love dies suddenly and they’ve never expressed their love and appreciation. Or the friend who was always there for you gets fed up and stops talking to you. Or the job you assumed you’d always has ends when your company downsizes. Nothing is a guarantee.

And, taking something or someone for granted is the opposite of gratitude!

The more you get used to something or someone, the less you feel grateful for having it. It’s just there for you. Gratitude is key for manifesting more good stuff as well as well as being in a happy place in life. Taking for granted shows you don’t appreciate all the good in your life. When I suggest to people that the write a Gratitude List, many list the obvious but soon can’t think of more. I tell them to dig deep. What are they taking for granted? Who is a blessing they don’t appreciate as one? Aha! Then they think of more things for their lists!

I love reading the posts on my Conscious Gratitude group on Yahoo,  where people can post their blessings every day. Often reading what others post reminds of what I didn’t think of. Often we take things for granted without thinking. That’s why I post my blessings every day—to remind myself to think about all the wonderful things I have to be grateful for, including good friends.

Taking someone for granted is not nice. Nor is allowing yourself to be taken for granted, which reinforces a lack of self-love.

If you feel taken for granted like I used to, reevaluate why you allow people to take from you in ways that feel bad. Now that my self-love is strong, I give more than I ever did as a DoorMat but it’s because I enjoy helping others, not to show how nice I am or to buy approval. When you give in a healthy way, with love in your heart, you shouldn’t feel taken for granted. If you do, ask yourself if you’re giving to be kind or get something back.

The less you give to get something back, the more empowered you are.

That said, it it’s reasonable to expect at least a “thank you” for what you do. If you consistently don’t get that courtesy from someone you help regularly, then stop what you give! I do. I consider it impolite not to say “thank you” for a favor. Since I don’t like dealing with impolite people, I stop those favors. Whatever works for you is fine, as long as it leaves you feel good about what you do for others, without any but…. Behavior from others that leaves you with negative emotions means you need to pull back on what you give—as an act of self-love!

The more you don’t take anything good in your own life for granted, the more appreciation will be part of your life.

Often we take for granted things that we should actively feel grateful for. We look for big things to appreciate and ignore all those delightful little things that add joy. I look for things to appreciate and post them on my Conscious Gratitude group. It brightens my life dramatically to focus on all my blessings, large and teensy. Spend a whole day looking for things about your life to appreciate. Don’t take the good in your life for granted because you’re focusing on what you think is wrong with it, or you. Or because you’re giving all your attention to making others happy. Love yourself enough to not take your own life or needs or happiness for granted. Consciously look and you’ll find things to feel good about.

Take the self-love challenge and get my book, How Do I Love Me? Let Me Count the Ways for free at And you can post your loving acts HERE to reinforce your intention to love yourself. Read my 31 Days of Self-Love Posts HERE.

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