When I think of reciprocity, I’m reminded of one of the lyrics from Lauryn Hill’s hit song, “Ex-Factor”:
“Tell me who I have to be, to gain some reciprocity.”
What she means is, I want back what I’m giving. I know many times I’ve felt this way.
For example, if I’m in a relationship, I go hard for it. I want it 100 percent. There’s nothing that can make me lose that zeal for it more than not receiving 100 percent from my partner. In those instances where you feel like you’re not getting back what you invest, it’s time to evaluate your position. And, it’s more than likely time to change it.
I know there can be negative reciprocity but I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about being in something or with someone and simply wanting a positive return on your investment. It’s important to evaluate if you are involved in mutually beneficial relationships in all areas of your life:
Job benefits: Are you being fairly compensated for your work?
Relationship benefits: Are both parties involved investing in the union?
Spiritual benefits: Are you receiving blessings, but not being one?
Reciprocity is a mutual exchange. It’s fairness. So in an effort to answer Lauryn’s question: You don’t have to be anyone but you! You deserve positive reciprocity. You don’t have to change who you are to receive what you deserve. You just need to change your expectations of the person or entity your hoping to receive it from. Which may mean you need to have no expectations from them at all! And in some cases, it may be time to let go.
It’s okay to feel a sense of entitlement when it comes to reciprocity when you’ve invested and done your part.
One definition of reciprocation describes it as an object or a part of a machine that moves backward and forward in a straight line. Non wavering, but constantly moving. Giving and taking. An equal exchange to achieve an ultimate goal. That’s the makings of a mutually beneficial relationship.
Keep pressing and reciprocate.