Let’s take a minute to think about your last paycheck. Picture it in your mind. Do you feel satisfied? Okay about it, but it could be better? Complete disappointment? No matter what you think about how much you make, I bet you have the potential to earn more. Even if you feel good about what you’re making, that doesn’t mean you are earning as much as you could be.
You are worth a lot more than you think you are, and you need to be maximizing that earning potential. You might even be the one getting in the way of your earning potential. Here are three things you’re doing that are holding you back:
1. You say “yes” too often.
Chances are, when a boss or coworker asks you to do something extra, you say yes. That sounds like an awesome thing—surely saying yes can’t be hurting you, right? Well, sometimes saying yes too much can keep you from making money that you deserve. Staying late, taking on extra work, going above and beyond your pay grade means that you are working for free. While being a can-do person is excellent for advancement, it can hurt you if you don’t set some limits. Telling people, no now and then lets them know that they can’t use you. It says that you know your worth. You deserve to be paid for the work you are doing, so don’t be afraid to ask for compensation if you’re doing extra work. It could even help you get a raise.
2. You’re too humble.
Let me start by saying this: you need to ask for the raise you deserve. Being too humble can cost you money. You got your job because you had potential, and you’ve kept it because you are good at it. Too often, people feel like they’re “nothing special” and avoid asking for raises or promotions, assuming they’ll just be offered to them. Sometimes, you have to take the initiative and ask for them. Don’t be afraid to admit you’re awesome. At the very least, you are showing your boss that you are capable and confident, and maybe they will consider you for future promotions. You have to be your greatest advocate.
3. You are scared of changing jobs.
This is a big one. Changing jobs can be terrifying, especially when you’ve been with your current employer a while. Your job is comfortable—you know your boss, your coworkers, and how the business operates. But your job is also probably not maximizing your earning potential. It would help if you always were keeping an eye out for better job opportunities. If you find a new job that will pay you more, I say go for it. You can also use a higher offer from another employer to negotiate a raise at your current job. No matter what, you have to try and work past any fear you may have about changing jobs or looking for a better salary. Your fear is holding you back, but you can overcome it.
This article was written by Caitlin Wiles.
Caitlin Wiles is currently working on a B.A. in English at Maryville University. Beyond studying, she also enjoys reading, writing, baking, and taking care of her stepchild. Caitlin is passionate about mental health awareness, gender-neutral parenting, LGBTQ+ rights, and finding the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe. In the future, she hopes to find new ways to help people through writing and become a teacher.