“I don’t know who you think you are but whoever it is, your not that great!” Those words still echo from the day I had the courage to confront my father about his alcoholism way back when I was in my early twenties. At times, when I am feeling insecure, I find I still believe him, and that feeling of being “not good enough” shows up to thwart my endeavors.
Do you feel not good enough?
Do you feel not good enough: Sometimes? Fairly often? All the time? In the past, I ran from that uncomfortable feeling of humiliation, embarrassment, and self-defeat. I would get really busy with activity, activity, and more activity to cover up my feelings of inadequacy and didn’t know what to do to feel better. Busy-ness was just the sideshow that kept me occupied in my discomfort.
What do you do to avoid those squirrely feelings? What tactic do you use to cover them up? Do you feel more confident when you are done with that cover up; or do you feel like you just dug a deeper hole? If your system isn’t working, here is a step by step system that I find works with most everyone.
Key to Success
First, remember that feelings are just information. Feeling are not a threat to your existence, despite what you may have been told. (E = MC2 . Einstein’s formula means energy in motion, E – Motion.) Feelings, even bad feelings, are there to tell you exactly what is needed next. They tell just where you are off course and will let you know exactly what you need to do to feel empowered.
Listening to your Best Friend
Second, breathe. Breathe three deep breaths. Allow yourself to get in touch with that feeling of Not Good Enough. You may be thinking that I’m crazy, “I already feel bad. I don’t want to feel worse!” But we often fail to realize that it is really within the running and covering up that we scare ourselves into indecisiveness and bad action. Like the fear of the Boogie-man, if we shine the flashlight in all the corners of the room, we see there is nothing to be afraid of. Feelings are, quite often, our Boogie-man and we jump under the covers and run instead of pulling out our flashlight.
Imagine making Not Good Enough your ally instead of your greatest fear. If you greet it like your best friend, what you really find is that it has come by to tell you some very important information. And we all know, that the closest of our friends will usually tell us what we need to hear, and not what we want to hear. Our feelings do the very same thing, but we been conditioned to not listen to them, especially the “bad” ones. (Side note: There are no bad feelings, refer to above: feelings are just information, you’re interpretation is what makes them “bad”.)
Lesson to Be Learned
So your friend Not Good Enough shows up, what do you do?
Ask Not Good Enough, “What are you here to teach me today? What is it I need to know in order to feel more confident?” Although the reply might be a bit different each time, depending on what is happening in your life, the theme of Not Good Enough’s response might sound like, “Give yourself a break. Slow down, give yourself a chance to see new options.” By stopping for a minute and stepping back from the immediacy of what is happening, new information can bubble up. Grateful for the insight, you would say, “Thank you, Not Good Enough for showing up today. Thanks for reminding me that have those videos I could watch that would teach about all that new Facebook stuff I want to implement. Once I watch them, I won’t feel so stupid.” Or, “Thanks for helping me realize that I am just over my head and I need to call my supervisor for some guidance.” Or, “WOW, thanks for reminding me of who I am. What other people think of me is none of my business! You’re right Not Good Enough, I will pull out my list of my Talents, Abilities and Gifts and review it so I remember just how valuable I am.”
Steps to Success
As your ally, Not Good Enough has the info you need to go from feeling powerless to empowered. By stopping and listening to what it has to tell you, you will see new possibilities arise. If instead, you continue to run from Not Good Enough, you will continue to have the same limited options to choose from in anything you try. You already know that these options aren’t working, so why not listen to what Not Good Enough has to say?
Turn the light on and see the power that you have by allowing your feelings to be your best friend. They are ready to let you know what you need to do next to feel more confident and secure.
Go ahead: breathe, feel and ask, “Not Good Enough, what do you have to teach me today?”
What do you have to loose?