By nature, I’m a people pleaser. I’ve always been quick to compromise. Or cave. My mom would tell you that I was born a mediator. Basically, I let others dim my shine.

I set a goal this year to stand up for myself more. No more, “sure, we can try it your way.” No more just grumbling about an injustice, but then going along with it. Over the past week, I had three opportunities to push back and I nailed it each time!

I sent an edited document to a colleague who wrote back, “I’d like to reject all the changes you proposed.” I wrote back telling him no, that’s not an option. I explained why I edited his piece and told him he was welcome to take another look and what needed to happen for it to get published.

My gym ran a contest with no terms and conditions. Then they disqualified me for not meeting the requirements that they made up on the fly. Did I sit quietly in the corner? No! I called the manager and explained to him that he has to follow Washington state law.

And finally, I was told to sign a contract granting an irrevocable use of my work for no pay. The license agreement also stated that the recipient could make derivatives of it, and that I’d be responsible should any legal challenges arise. Absolutely not, my friends!

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