More often than not, we accept less than we deserve. Whether it be friends, a boyfriend/girlfriend, or our everyday acquaintances, it is easy to let people overstep your boundaries.

The reality is, what we allow is what will continue. If someone leaves you with unsettling feelings or makes you feel like you have to prove your worth, the relationship should not be where our energy is placed. So why do we allow this?

In my thrive group (bible study through the Cru organization on my campus), we read an article on relationships. The article provided reasons in which we feel the need to hold on to others. We tend to go from relationship to relationship and tolerate stupidity to fulfill our “spiritual thirst.” Here are some of the underlying “thirsts” that the article suggests we are trying to quench through relationships:

"Approval and appreciation. “My life feels more meaningful when I get the praise and compliments of others” or “I like being in a relationship because it makes me feel wanted.”

Influence and Power. “I feel more powerful when I am dating someone important or when I’m accepted into an elite group on campus.”

Emotional and physical comfort. “Being in a relationship with someone makes me feel less lonely or bored” or “I like the intimacy we have when we talk on the phone every night or when we engage in sexual activity.”

Security and control. “I feel more secure about myself and my future when I’m in a committed relationship” or “I like to date people I can control because I like being the one in charge.”

I would argue that the central reason for our tolerating of other's bulls**t is because we lack the understanding of our worth. In order for us to create relationships in which we don't feel taken for granted, cheated, or judged, we must love ourselves enough to set boundaries. "Your time and your energy are precious. It is us who chooses how we use it. We teach others how to treat us by deciding what we will and will not accept" (Anna Taylor).

It is not selfish to love yourself. It is necessary to make your own happiness a priority. Sometimes, this is more difficult than it sounds. Letting go of toxic people may be scary because you have to sacrifice your security blanket. However, it is essential we understand that we deserve nothing more than the love that we give freely to those we love in return.

At some point, we have to stop asking why people treat us the way they do and start asking why we allow it. I know that personally, once I begin to proactively examine how the people around me treat me and make me feel, I can see a stark contrast in the functions of each of my relationships.

It is hard to cut people out of your life, though this doesn't mean we need to be unkind. We should still give, but not allow ourselves to be used. We should still trust, but not be naive and let lies be swept under the rug. We should still listen and care but must acknowledge that our voices too are important.

All I'm trying to say is, just because you love someone's presence in your life, does not mean they are healthy for you. We can't let others stunt our confidence and keep us from knowing how valuable we are.

You deserve better than people who can not see your amazing attributes and mess with your flow! Stop letting others make you question your worth and embrace the fact that you are dope as hell.