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Pause. Take a breath and ask yourself, “When Will I Be Good Enough?” and wait.
- finish everything on your to-do list?
- live life in your terms?
- quit your job?
- successfully raise your kids?
For many people the answer to that question is “I Don’t Know.” The self-help, psychology answer is: You are enough right now. You are enough just because you are on this planet as a member of the earth. I believe while, yes, on a higher plane we are all enough right now AND I believe on a practical level the answer is personal for each of us, we just haven’t chosen to really examine the answer because we have falsely tied our productivity to feeling worthy, to feeling ‘good enough’.
Much of our society is fed by the rule: The more productive you are the more worthy you are.
When we go to a party we are asked, “What do you do?” or “Where do you work?”
When we are asked the question, “How are you?” We reply with “Busy, busy busy, I don’t know where the time goes” and you are met with a knowing nod.
We are plagued by the “never enough time” lament and the “who had less sleep” competition. And because of it we are an overwhelmed, exhausted, unhappy society.
The first night of the Daring Greatly course we talk about Brené Brown’s Guideposts for Wholehearted Living and #7 is Cultivating Play and Rest: Letting Go of Exhaustion as a Status Symbol and Productivity as Self‐Worth.
When I read that out loud to the group there was a audible sigh followed by, “Yes, I want to do that!” “I want to stop tying everything to my productivity!! How do I do that?!?”
And the answer is one of those simple yet oh so hard responses: Pay attention and gradually start re-programming the go-go-go mentality.
- Notice how many times you get stuck in the busy busy busy mentality. How often do you lament “I am SO busy” or litany off your todo list to yourself or someone else in the hopes of looking busy. Because busy is such a comfortable habit for many of us…I have found it helpful to build natural stopping points throughout the day so I can check-in and see if I am falling victim to my to-do list. You might post sticky notes around the house so when you see a sticky note you check in or set an alarm on your phone and every time it rings you check in.
- Notice how often you monger starts hammering you when you decide to enjoy some play and rest. Notice what he/she says. Notice the themes of the messages. Lovingly ask it to be quiet because you are playing right now.
- Each time you catch yourself getting caught up in the belief system “that the more I do the better I am” remind yourself that you are good enough now.
- Ask yourself:
- What do I want my life to feel like?
- Is doing, doing doing helping me feel that way?
- Does feeling anxious, stressed and busy make me feel good?
- Can I step out of the busy busy busy mode for 5 minutes?
- Gradually as you practice building awareness and taking a break from the go, go go you will be able to take longer and longer breaks. 5 minutes will be 10 will be 45 will be 90 and over time your body will recognize how wonderful it feels to not be chasing the carrot.
- Find like minded people who also want to decrease the concept that I am only worthy if I am productive. Engage in real conversations about:
- What you really want out of life,
- How you would answer the question when will I be good enough
- How you want your life to feel?
- What you can do to decrease the pull of society to be busy, busy, busy
No matter how much you check off your list the carrot will just keep moving. Serenity only comes when you start letting go of the societal definition of success and get clear on your personal definition of success.
I’ll ask it again: When Will I Be Good Enough?
Coming up at the Live Happier Loft--we have a few workshops/courses that touch on this topic:
Live Happier Wine Night Overcoming Perfectionism: Thursday August 11th, Join us for a presentation and discussion on letting go of the need to be perfect.
Seminar Saturday: Productivity as Self Worth: Saturday, August 16th, A Workshop taking an in-depth look at the Brené Brown guidepost of Cultivating Play and Rest and Letting go of the belief that your Productivity defines Self Worth.
Daring Greatly Wednesday Intro Class: Wednesday, August 20th, This is an intro to the 4 week Course that will be offered in September. The Course is based on Brené Brown’s work in the book Daring Greatly and will be covering the guideposts for Wholehearted Living. Group discussion, presentation and interactive exercises will be used