Did you ever see a dog run after a squirrel, miss it, and run back to you wagging its tail? The dog is enthralled with the chase regardless of whether it catches the squirrel. The dog never comes back with it’s tail between the legs feeling shame and sadness because it wasn’t good enough. We are deemed the most intelligent species, yet we have some thoughts that really don’t work for us. The primary one is: “I’m not good enough.”
I’m not smart enough, attractive enough, wealthy enough, and on and on the list goes. You know it all too well. These “not enough” thoughts are supported by events in our culture such as: grades in school, spelling bees, beauty contests, sporting events, and singing and dance competitions. They are set up to see who is the best and worse, that is, who is enough and who is not enough.
“I’m not enough” is Survival Mode Thinking. We make it up as a way of putting pressure on ourselves to be our best. It can work temporarily, but it is not sustainable. Over time, the “not enough” thinking makes us anxious to perform and is demoralizing, leaving us feeling inadequate and even depressed.
Thriving Mode is fully accepting and loving yourself right where you are, wherever that may be. My clients have told me countless times, “but if I accept myself where I am, I’ll be lazy and have no motivation to excel.” This is not true. When we feel really good about ourselves, we have energy, enthusiasm, and confidence to practice a skill.
Reflect on ways you believe you are “not enough”. Remember you are making it up. Then accept yourself right where you are, just because. Treat yourself like you would a best friend or young child.