My Anxiety Makes Me Settle For Less

Unsplash / Ryan Jacobson

I am too afraid to ask for what I want, so I’m always stuck settling for less.

When I’m interested in dating someone, I will not complain when they wait days to text me back or when they flirt with others right in front of my face. I will let them do what they want without consequences, because I dislike confrontation. I would never dream of calling them out on their behavior. I allow the people I care about to walk all over me because I do not want to risk chasing them away by standing up for myself. I would rather deal with their shitty treatment without giving any indication I am upset. I would rather suffer in silence.

It’s the same with my family and friends. They will tell ‘harmless’ jokes about how quiet I am and how I never leave my room, but instead of speaking up and letting them know what they said was not okay, I will internalize my feelings. I will keep the pain to myself. I will smile at their words and act like I am completely fine with their insults, accidentally encouraging the behavior. They will have no idea I am upset with what they are doing, so they will have no reason to stop doing it.

Because of my anxiety, I settle for less than I deserve in every aspect of my world.

I will get a haircut that I hate, but instead of asking the stylist to fix it, I will pretend it looks perfect and wait until I’m alone in my car to cry my eyes out about how horrible I look. I will get the wrong food at a restaurant and force myself to eat it instead of calling the waitress back over to amend the mistake. I will be called the wrong name by a coworker but will still answer to it because correcting them would make me feel awkward.

I settle for less than I deserve because I suck at socializing. I would never be able to demand better treatment. I would never be able to stand up for myself.

Maybe another reason I settle for less than I deserve is because I have no idea what I deserve. I do not think highly of myself. I consider myself a burden. I am always worried about whether I am being overly annoying.

My anxiety has given me a warped view of myself. I do not see myself as someone fun and outgoing, as someone who deserves love and success and overall happiness. I see myself as someone who is struggling to make it through each passing day, someone who is lucky to have any friends at all.

For as long as I can remember, my anxiety has convinced me to settle for less than I deserve — but I am not going to let that continue. I am going to raise my standards. I am going to expect more from others. I am not going to let that little voice in my head tell me I am unworthy anymore, because I know that I am. TC mark

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