Not smart enough, not pretty enough, not strong enough, not talented enough, not
loving enough, not disciplined enough, not brave enough…
If you’re caught in the “not enough” trap, nothing about you ever seems quite good enough. Standards by which you measure yourself become inhumane. Successes are rarely enjoyed, for you always feel as if you must do better. Perceived failures are magnified. Life becomes a quest for utter perfection—like the carrot dangling in front of a horse, it is chased but never truly experienced.
“If I’m 98% perfect in anything I do, it’s the 2% I’ve messed up I’ll remember when I’m through,” begins a little ditty. The problem begins when we allow others—family members, our spouse, friends, a boss, popular culture—to define who we are or are not. Unfortunately, these roots of self-image often stretch far back into childhood, when negative messages we received from parents and others imprinted us with a feeling of being stupid, fat, lazy, weak or otherwise inadequate.
But as adults, we can choose to truly accept ourselves—with all our strivings, quirks, faults and shortcomings—as being enough right now. The more we do that, the less vulnerable we are to the opinions of others.