I Am Not Good Enough
Is this you right now? Do you resonate with this statement somewhere or everywhere in your life? This is the most common statement I hear from women when they come to see me. They feel unworthy, unloved, insecure, unhappy, with very low self-esteem, and it is affecting every relationship they have because they simply feel “not good enough.”
We all crave to be whole and complete as human beings so, to not feel good enough, is one of the biggest inner conflicts we face in striving for this.
Feeling Not Good Enough is Painful, but it is Not Permanent!
Let’s not put a band-aid on this, and let’s look into how you can help yourself be a worthy, happy person. We must go deeper and heal the actual wound. The more common mother-daughter wound is the most profound and intensely painful wound you could ever experience, and it does affect every relationship you create in your life. It really is crucial that this relationship is healed before you look to heal the other important relationships in your life.
Why do I believe this?
Because in my own experience, healing this incredibly complex relationship has transformed my life. I also know this to be true in the lives of thousands of other women. I am good enough. I truly believe this affects every area of my life from romance, family, friendships, to even in business. So, it is something that is worth putting the time, effort, and hard work into.
When you are born, your mother is your world and she loves you unconditionally. However, if your mother is unable to express this love because of her own wounds, she could end up verbally, physically, and emotionally abusing you. The child then puts a condition on the love because of her mother’s wounds. An example of this would be, “I will only be loved if I do well.” The child doesn’t receive the love he/she craves, and as a result, has nothing to relate to inside of her, so she has to create things in her external world for her to feel good enough about herself.
And so, the seed is planted and will continue to grow into the belief that “You are not good enough.”
Once this is a belief, your behaviour will drive you and will keep you in the space of unworthiness. Being ‘not good enough’ now feels like its actually part of you, BUT the inner conflict inside of your mind continues to rear it’s ugly head because the real truth is, you are in fact, good enough. The reason it hurts so much is that it’s not actually your belief, but one that was created from your childhood wound. Not only do you not feel your mother’s love, you are not living by your own beliefs.
Not being loved by my mother in a way I desperately wanted to be, affected my entire life, creating a hugely destructive relationship with her for over 35 years. During this period, I tried everything I could to feel that love and failed every time. This chipped away at any self-esteem and self-worth I had until I hit rock bottom. My mum told me to my face that she didn’t love me. I felt as if I’d hit the end of the road and I had nowhere else to go, as it wasn’t worth trying anymore.
But that was the turning point in my life.
I felt like running away from everything I had created. But something stopped me and I faced reality for the first time by reaching out for help. After months of therapy and not speaking to my mother, I started to connect with her again. Over the years, we have been able to create a deep and loving bond. After 16 years in Dubai, we are returning to the UK to live down the road from my Mum and Dad so miracles truly do happen. I feel whole, worthy, and more than good enough in every area of my life, with an exciting future ahead.
If therapy doesn’t feel right for you right now, look for some new ideas to start your journey.
Here are 11 Ways to Get Past Feeling Not Good Enough and Raise Your Self-Esteem:
- Be aware of your feelings, notice what feelings you have when you ‘don’t feel good enough’ in situations; do you feel overwhelmed, anxious, scared, insecure. or jealous? Acknowledge these emotions.
- As you become more aware of these feelings (and not pushing them deep inside anymore), start asking questions about that feeling, is it longing to be accepted, does it want to be appreciated?
- Now you are aware of what that feeling really wants, for example, to feel you belong (this was a huge one for me) think back over your life and try to remember a time you felt like you belonged, maybe it was with a school friend or you were part of the netball team? Recreate that feeling because that is what you are craving.
- So, now that you understand you have a need to feel that ‘you belong’ start to create this into your life by perhaps starting a new hobby, joining a therapy, volunteering in your community, look at how YOU can create that ‘belonging feeling.’
- What is being good enough anyway? List what that means to you in all areas of your life from your relationship with your partner, your finances, how many friends you have, etc. Start to deconstruct the word ‘enough’; it is only the meaning you are giving it.
- Now you are developing an understanding of how you can look at the person who taught you that you were not good enough and realize that this is actually what they are saying about themselves. For me, my mother believed that she wasn’t good enough at achieving good grades at school, so that belief was projected onto me.
- Now you can start asking yourself, “I’m not good enough for whom?” This might make you think that the whole ‘good enough’ thing is ridiculous and give you the opportunity to explore further how you can heal this.
- The voices that tell you that you aren’t good enough may have become an addiction, so by becoming aware of this, you can consciously change the language around it. Start repeating throughout the day “I am enough.”
- Be kind to yourself and show yourself compassion. This really is key in every area of your life. Begin to look at yourself as if you were talking to your best friend. How would you show her kindness and how can you start doing this for yourself today?
- Use this daily mantra when the negative feelings arise: “I’ll discover something if I listen without attachment.”
- Keep asking these two questions: “What are my definitions of ‘good enough’ and ‘not good enough’? and, Can I really define these?”
Keep exploring and never give up!
Feeling not good enough can be very painful, but it is not permanent!
When it feels right for you, seek out some therapy to support you through your journey so you don’t have to do it alone.
I believe we all want to be in the place of feeling enough. Get yourself in the space where you are no longer assuming that you’re not good enough, not turning your back to the fact that you are enough, and no longer trying to find evidence that you’re worth it.
Positive affirmations work really well with helping you get past feeling not good enough. You can find downloadable affirmations on my website.
And the beauty is everyone can do this, and you can start today. As always, I’d love any feedback.