I have had the opportunity to face a few things in the past few weeks that I know about myself but don't acknowledge too often. Life has away of bringing character defects up over and over until they are clear to you and can't be ignored.
First I have run up against of number of customers lately that don't value my time or expertise. It is the nature of the beast when you do design work or really any creative work at all. It is hard to get across the value of knowledge and experience.
This whole issue is a problem for me. I get roped in to hours of work without payment and I feel resentful.
It always takes me back the Byron Katie's The Work. She talks about looking at the issue and turning it around. First you state what you think is the problem. In this case "people don't value my time" Then you turn it around and say " I don't value my own time". Hummm. Is that true? In this incidence I could even say "I don't value other peoples time". For today I will just look at the first statement.
First, who is going to value my time except me. If I charge for my time then that means I do value my time. I find it really hard to do that depending on the situation. It shouldn't depend on the situation. But the truth is I am afraid of the response. I just got off the phone with someone that said " I am not paying you to come to my house" she just told me she needed an expert opinion.
I think I am ready do something about this now. Fake it until you make it, right? I am afraid of not getting the job but the truth is I don't usually get the job anyway. So to recap I do the work, don't charge the money and still don't get the job. Sounds crazy doesn't it? People don't realize the value of my opinion. I don't think my opinion is valuable. Simple but easy a way to clear things up.
Reflections. Realizing that the people around me are just reflections of myself. That is why it is so easy to see someone else's shortcomings. Sometimes I see earlier versions of myself in other people and I think their treatment of me is a little pay back for the way I have treated other people in the past.
Life gives us lots of opportunities to see who we really are if we are willing to open our eyes. It isn't about beating ourselves up over our shortcomings but seeing what other people see and doing better.