Many of us can feel underestimated. You’re excellent at work, but you may not be paid your worth, or your potential is not acknowledged. Your parents can believe you made the dean’s List. Some of your friends are surprised when you meet someone great.
These messages can be painful. When people underestimate us, they hold negative assumptions that can make us question our own abilities.
Shaking off underestimation
When you are underestimated, it’s vital to know that the situation has nothing to do with your capabilities. It might be triggered by racism, gender, age, etc.
Consider what you can control. You can’t control how others behave, but you can focus on what you can control, such as your values.
Expand your social circle
If you’re feeling underestimated professionally, it could help to break away from prejudiced social circles and reach beyond your job or industry to connect with others.
Consider joining some intellectual group not connected to your job so that you can relate to people in a different way that demonstrates your abilities.
Find strategic support, play the long game
It can be beneficial to align yourself with supportive people who are also working toward similar goals. For example, connecting with other women who are driven, desire to do more, or are competitive in a healthy way.
Be committed to a long view of your vision. Press on toward your dream despite the naysayers.
Don’t underestimate your value. Be the first person to put you in the right place. You belong up here, not down there.
When you realize that a person underestimates you by trying to shame, gaslight, or humiliate you, turn the tables in the moment. You’re going to have to agree to disagree. They will be uncomfortable because you’re not going with their assumption about you.