One of my more recent posts – 7 thing women need to know or be reminded of was well received. The response on social media was good and within a small, private Facebook group I’m in, we discussed the post at length. In our discussion, a couple things showed up : – Unworthiness. Feelings of lacking, of being less.
I was not surprised. Many women struggle with these feelings. And if I am to be transparent, I too struggled with in the past, mainly when I was in an abusive marriage. Much of the value we put on ourselves we base on our relationships with others. And in my case, when my spouse who was supposed to love and care for me turned around and started physically, verbally and emotionally abusing me, it was pretty easy to struggle with the feeling of not being enough, not being worthy. After the relationship ended, I had to do a lot of work on myself to get past this. The reality is, I have always been enough. I was enough before I met him and I was enough when he was beating me. I was, and am, enough after that relationship ended. My ‘enoughness‘ is not determined by external factors or people, I am simply enough because I am a Child of the Creator and there is completion and ‘enoughness’ in each of His creation.
What people do and say to you often bear reflection on themselves; it rarely has anything to do with you. To pull our sense of worthiness from how others treat us is a gross mistake we women often make. To look at others and feel like we are lacking or have fallen short because of what they may appear to have or what they are doing or have accomplished is also something we need to avoid doing. We each have our highs and lows and we each struggle with different things. But even in those struggles, we are enough. There is always some area of our life that’s worth celebrating.
We have to get past pulling our value from things and people. We have to train ourselves to believe that we are enough just as we are. In those outdated jeans, we are enough. In those extra pounds we may carry, we are enough. In the reality that we dropped out of school early to have a child, we are still enough. Even when we make poor relationship choices, we are still enough. And when other talk behind our backs and malign us, we are still enough.
We are enough, enough, enough.
We recognize that we are enough because we understand that being enough does not stem from what we do, don’t do, have, don’t have, who we know, or don’t know. It stems from the reality that we are children of a Creator whose handiwork is not flawed. Everything He makes is perfect and enough. And you my friend, are an expression of this handiwork.
Stop pulling your value and sense of worth from the compliments and praise others may heap on you. Remind yourself it does not come from stuff or who affirms or validates you. Let’s get past the external because when we don’t get the external we crawl into the shell of feeling insufficient, not enough.
And as for feeling insufficient and inadequate, here’s the thing – no one makes us feel insufficient without us allowing them. Feeling insufficient, believing that we are not enough is a personal choice. So many times we fail to realize our worth, talent and gifts, opting to feel like we are lacking or missing something. We pull our value from relationships, possessions and fail to realize that we, just as God created us, are enough.
In order to build lives that inspire and excite us we must start from a strong, loving, secure base of self-worth and we must believe that we are sufficient, just as we are and that we are deserving of good things. More and more I’m realizing that self-love and self-acceptance boils down to the ability to declare “I am enough and I am worthy”and more than saying it, believing it with every fibre of our being.
Brene Brown is a researcher, speaker and author and has done ground breaking work on worthiness, shame and vulnerability. I love her work and her books. She talks about the importance of being kind to yourself and the courage to be imperfect. Her books and talk resonate with me on a deep level and I think it is worth the time for check her out. I always learn something and feel more enriched after consuming her content. Check out her video on shame and vulnerability below.
Finally, here’s a video from celebrity therapist, speaker and best-selling author Marisa Peer on The Biggest Disease Affecting Humanity: “I’m not enough”. Check it out and know that just as you are, enough. Make today a happy one and celebrate your ‘enoughness’.
Carlana Charles is the visionary and editor-in-chief of FemmePowered. She is a womanist, writer, speaker, story midwife and facilitator of meaningful and engaging conversations. When she is not working in or on FemmePowered, she can be found resting, baking, reading or scribbling furiously in her journal whilst sipping wine or coffee, sometimes both at the same time. She is currently working on her first book and hopes to release it in September 2017.