© 2024 Melanie White
If you have ever struggled with being good enough, doing enough, or having enough, let’s unwind that and get to the truth in this episode so you can make peace with these feelings and let them go!
One of the common denominators of discomfort is the sense of not having, doing or being ‘enough.’ It comes up a lot for people in business and life, and any of these three ‘enoughs’ can be a roadblock to your success and satisfaction.
Today I want to talk about the signs that you might be feeling like you don’t have enough, do enough or that you aren’t enough, the results they cause, and how to overcome them.
Please know that all of these attitudes come from a place of lack or inadequacy. If you think with a ‘lack’ mindset, it will show up first in your self-talk – in other words, the thoughts you have – and that will affect how you feel and act, and the results you get.
Lucky, these are things you can change. We will talk about that at the end.
Even if you think that you have enough, the internet, media and marketing that’s out there in the world try to convince you that you don’t have enough – usually, so they can rope you in and sell you more stuff.
This shows up in various guises.
For example, there is the guise that your home needs to be redecorated and so you need all of the latest trendy colours and styles.
Another example is that the clothes that you’re wearing might be “out of date” and so you need to buy some new clothes so that you are dressing in a way that is socially acceptable and ‘on trend’.
In the business world, you have all of these people telling you that they have the perfect formula for growing your business, the perfect way to beat your money mindset issues, or the perfect training to help you grow your Facebook audience, or that you need extra training to become good at what you do in your profession.
While some of these things may be true, while it may be good to update your stuff, learn more or perhaps develop some new skills, the truth of the matter is that what you have is perfectly good right now and it probably is enough.
When I was growing up, there was a saying that people needed to “keep up with the Joneses”. The Free Dictionary.com defines this as when someone deliberately buys or does the same things as the people around them so that they appear as successful as them.
Whether it’s about your own lack of self-confidence, or the desire to appear as successful as other people, this sense of not having enough is a huge impediment to you being authentically you and to succeeding and growing as a person and in your business.
When you are so busy trying to have enough, it means that you are probably collecting or accumulating things that you may not necessarily need.
This is where overwhelm starts, and here’s what the signs of overwhelm look like.
If you are feeling overwhelmed with your business and/or life, you might be telling people you are ‘juggling a lot of balls’ or have ‘too much on your plate.’ You might not be making time for your own self-care and rejuvenation. Maybe you can’t remember the last time you took a holiday. You might be worrying about not remembering everything in all last year’s training courses and needing to go and learn more stuff. Any or all of these are signs that you have too much going on.
RIght now, look around at all of the training courses and books and clothes and things that you have, then imagine how you’d feel if you had to move house right now. What would that bring up for you?
I bet you would feel stuck and wonder where to start, or put it off until ‘later’ because the job is too big to tackle.
If this sounds like you, then you might want to consider listening to my previous podcast Overcoming Purpose Blocks. In that episode, we cover things that get in the way of you being your authentic self and clearing away that clutter so you can define who you are and what’s important to you.
When you truly accept that you have enough, then and only then you will be able to spend more time making the best use of all of the things that you have. You will get to savour them, cherish them, enjoy them, and make good use of them.
In contrast, when you have too many things to worry about, then life and business become a tick-and-flick exercise as you strive to keep up and get onto the next urgent thing.
When it comes to training, we are constantly sold the fact that we don’t know enough.
I recently heard a very good commentary on the Bible as a metaphor for learning. A religious person doesn’t go out and buy hundreds of different sorts of books and read them in order to develop spirituality. They have one book that they read over and over again, so that they truly know, understand, and embody the wisdom within it.
Imagine if you did that with the latest training course that you completed? Imagine if you actually applied what you learnt? How would that change things for you?
I encourage you to consider what serves you in life and what doesn’t, and to make a list.
Stop keeping things “just in case.”
Then, start getting rid of things that no longer serve you.
The next thing to think about is whether you are ‘doing enough’.
Maybe you’re on social media looking at a bunch of happy, successful people who are doing amazing things and living amazing and successful lives, wondering why you can’t have this too, and wondering if you are doing enough to get there.
This is 100% smoke and mirrors. It’s your brain working against you.
I’d like to illustrate this with a story.
A few years ago I made a vignette movie, capturing some really great surfing moments from about a dozen surf sessions that my husband had enjoyed.
The movie was set to a 3 ½ 3-minute, heavy rock song that created a lot of energy and fit with the carving turns and cutbacks he was making in the surf.
We shared the movie with a few people to show the surf highlights from that year.
What I found interesting was that a couple of people came back to us and said, “Gee all you guys do is party and surf, doing a lot of stuff, being all pumped up and energetic. When do you find time to work and clean your house and stuff?”
Isn’t it interesting that someone could look at a 3 ½ minute movie – out of a total of 525,600 minutes in a year – and believe that that was representative of our whole life?
This is what we do on social media.
We see the person who has lost 30 kg and we forget about the months of toil, mental challenge, and physical effort required to get there.
We see the successful person in business who has 40,000 followers and makes a 6-figure income and forget about the years of toil, trial, experimenting and failure they’ve endured.
But at the end of the day, doing enough is really just about staying in your lane, focusing on one thing and doing it well and persisting until the end.
It’s not about doing lots of different things all at once.
In business, doing enough is about researching and developing a solid plan, getting advice and help to test and implement it, and persisting until it’s complete.
Doing enough doesn’t mean that more is better – doing enough means that being selective, focused and persisting in a smart way is better!
In life, doing enough is about acting and giving within your personal capacity, and giving as much to yourself as you give to others. It’s finding the sweet spot between pleasure and achievement.
According to psychologist Chris Skellet, excessive focus on pleasure can lead to guilt and inadequacy, and excessive focus on achievement can lead to frustration and burnout.
I invite you to answer the question right now and to just give an immediate reaction – do you do enough?
Although I’m not a betting person, I bet you $100 that you do enough.
If you’re not sure, then I recommend that you give your brain the proof – write down all of the things that you do for yourself and others, and for the world. Then ask the question again.
The truth will reveal itself!
Most people have a deep-seated fear of not being enough.
Feeling that you’re not enough can show up in your life as comparing yourself to others, buying into feedback from others (no matter what the feedback is), rating your self-worth through your achievements or developing an excessive need for approval or to be liked.
If you feel you’re not enough, you might also attach negative labels to yourself or overgeneralise about how terrible, helpless or stupid you are – those sorts of things.
And further, if you think this way about yourself, please know that your brain will start to seek proof that it’s true.
When someone doesn’t reply to your text, if they don’t return your phone call, if you didn’t get a perfect score on your test, the ‘not good enough’ thinking person will turn those events into proof of inadequacy.
As I say this aloud, it probably sounds illogical. And it is. The problem is, if this dialogue is running in your head, it’s not easy to see that illogical talk for what it is.
I coached someone once who said they were no good at following through on anything and they were always giving up. The funny thing was they had just completed a year-long program that they’d persisted with even when they wanted to give up!
Reflecting that back to this person created a sharp realisation that the belief was not true.
Now it’s your turn. I invite you to think differently – because ‘not good enough’ thinking will 100% NOT help you to get to where you want to be.
That is just going to keep you in the cul-de-sac of frustration and misery.
Stop focusing on perfection, feeling dissatisfied with what you can’t do, and why you can’t do it.
Start asking a better-quality question.
Instead of asking what’s wrong with you, ask what’s right with you.
Make a list. Find the evidence of all the strengths, skills and wisdom you have.
Instead of thinking about how far you have to go, reflect on how far you’ve come!
Instead of talking about what you can’t achieve and why, talk about what you are determined to achieve and how.
You might see that a common pattern in these three cases is negative self-talk.
It’s your inner critic.
The way forward is to watch your thoughts and start reframing those sentences so you can turn your lack mentality into a mindset of adequacy, or even, abundance.
Hire a coach to help you if you find yourself falling into a hole.
I am working with clients on this right now and at times it’s hard for them but boy, have I seen some transformative thinking and feelings as a result of doing the work!
Reframing is simple, and not easy, but it’s extremely powerful and the effect is long-lasting.
Of all the habits you could possibly develop in life, this is by far the most important as it reduces stress, builds resilience and most importantly, builds self-belief.
When you have self-belief – anything is possible. ANYTHING!
Today I talked about three common ‘enough’ thinking patterns.
Not having enough, not doing enough, and not being enough.
They all come from a place of lack rather than abundance.
And none of them are helpful.
The way forward in all cases is to develop a habit of thought-watching and reframing.
It is the most powerful and transformative habit that you can develop because it will change the way you approach your life, it will build resilience and it will build self-belief.
It will help you to find your purpose and passion and to live a more satisfied life.
If you need coaching support for this important work, hit me up on my contact page.
I currently have space for three new clients.
Understanding who you are and what you need will allow your business to thrive! If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.
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