Silence The Inner Voice That Says You Are Not Good Enough
Here is what a not good enough mindset looks like: “Nothing ever works out for me”; “what a slob”. “I’m so useless”. You focus on your weaknesses, amplify them, and feel powerless to change the course of your life.
You’ve tried different techniques to boost your confidence. You paid lots of money to the highest-rated life coaches and read tons of books on positive psychology. But in the end, no matter what you did, you’re still left with that deep-seated feeling you are not good enough. And even worse — you’re terrified you’ll feel like that forever.
5 Signs That Indicate You Don’t Feel Good Enough
The deep core belief of not being enough is not something we actually think about. For example, if you’ve had a bad day at work because your boss was not pleased about your project and you came home upset, you might just think you had a terrible day.
So how to tell when you’re just feeling down about a current situation and when it’s something much deeper than that?
Here are the signs you view yourself as not good enough, inadequate, inferior, and less than others.
You settle for lame quality of life
Because you believe deep down that you are useless, flawed, and unworthy, you don’t even try to change your circumstances. You pass on career opportunities, give up on high education, or don’t even apply for good jobs that match your real skills.
You think that there is no point in you trying to set goals or achieve them because you’re just going to fail anyway, so you become passive about shifting your results.
Have low standards
When you see yourself as not good enough, you feel like you have nothing valuable to offer to others and the world. So if you perceive yourself and your time as invaluable, you’ll settle for people and jobs that don’t bring you any value either.
You’ll most likely hang out with loser friends or people who thrive on gossip and drama. Or you’d attract to your life romantic partners that will put you down, control you, or reflect back to you what you think about yourself.
You beat yourself up every time you fail
Failures are the worst-case scenario for you because through them you receive the validation that you are not good enough.
Instead of seeing failures for what they are — a learning curve — you terrify them and try to avoid them at all costs.
When they do occur, you are so harsh on yourself for making mistakes, small or big.
Your bruised ego simply can’t handle failure and your inner critic pops out and starts talking down to you.
This type of self-smack talk is not meant to spike a motivation to do better, but you re-assure you how insignificant, incompetent, and loser you are (obviously, that’s not true. Just because you feel like that, doesn’t mean it’s factual).
You are ashamed of who you are and tend to suffer from anxiety, depression, and anger issues
Having such toxic programming about yourself, you might be struggling with sadness, anxiety, depression, shame, and even anger problems at times.
You are so frustrated with your poor results in life and your perceived inability to change them. On the other hand, you know that there is more to life than this. You see others are moving ahead and accomplish their goals, while you settle for a lot less. The frustration keeps adding up and you find yourself fall into depression.
Moreover, it doesn’t take much for you to lose your ground. It’s fairly easy for you to get stressed out about things because you don’t believe you’re good enough to handle what life throws your way.
So whenever things don’t go as planned, the anxiety rears its ugly head and the fragile, temporary inner peace you had is now gone.
Life is painful when you carry shame within and don’t think you’re enough. It’s hard to keep your head up when you’re struggling with constant self-doubt.
It’s hard to be in the present moment and enjoy the small things if you are always worried about the future and how well you’d cope with it.
And it’s not like you haven’t tried to feel better about yourself. You’ve really put the effort into improving your self-image and self-esteem.
You’ve tried faking confidence postures and raised your voice to not sound too weak. Positive affirmations became your best friends for a while, you recited them every morning and hung them on your fridge.
But all of these attempts, real attempts, did not solve the issue at its root cause. Yes, they were somewhat helpful in making you feel slightly better, but the destructive “not good enough” paradigm has remained stuck inside you.
Before we see how to overcome this unhealthy internal state of not feeling good enough, let’s see the main reasons you ended up this way.
Why You Never Feel You Are Enough
Like most of our adult issues, the root cause probably stems from traumatic childhood experiences.
And yes, you might have been lucky enough to have loving parents. Yes, you may have had a pretty decent childhood with caretakers who bombarded you with affection and nurture. But that doesn’t diminish the possible painful experiences you endured as an innocent child.
You had controlling parents
If you had controlling parents, then their overbearing nature may affect you negatively. If you were often told what to do, how to do it, and when to do it, then some of your core needs that are critical for healthy development have not been met.
For example, your needs for freedom, choice, autonomy, independence, respect, and spontaneity were not addressed very well. As well as your needs to be seen, heard, growth, and learning was affected.
Therefore, if you were never taught how to make your own decisions or that you absorbed the message that your needs and wants are not important — then you are not important.
Other needs that may have gone unmet are discovery, contribution, competence, meaning, and consideration.
You had critical parents
If your parent(s) always wanted you to become smarter, or organized, or sportier, or if they favored your brother or sister…. whatever it was, the message was that you were not enough as is.
That is how the damaging state of shame has been developed because you were never good enough just as you are.
So, in order to get your parents’ approval, you chose a strategy, which is completely unconscious to change who you are. The child you thought something like –
“There must be something wrong with me that dad calls me names and mom scolds me. It is my badness that causes them to behave this way. It is my fault. So if I just find the right way to behave, they will give me the love I need”.
As children, we naturally seek approval and love. So we learn to suffocate our real personality and become the ‘good’ kid, at the price of turning into an adult who lacks a sense of self and never feels worthy.
Other types of dysfunctional types of parenthood include: neglecting parents, abandonment, caretakers who could not provide stability or safety (whether they were constantly angry with you, or engaged in dangerous activity such as drugs, alcohol, gambling, reckless driving, and etc.), or parents who gave you mixed messages: they were caring and loving one minute and all of the sudden were bursting in anger and screaming.
The common outcome for all these types of traumas is that you ended up viewing yourself as damaged, unworthy of love, and not a good enough individual.
How To Finally See Yourself As a Good Enough Adult
Luckily, our brains can shift with simple daily mental exercises, so you don’t have to continue living your life thinking you are not good enough.
Let’s explore some practical techniques you can perform, starting from today to shift your toxic inner talk and start seeing yourself as the divine being that you are.
It’s Not You — It’s Your Programming
The not good enough limiting belief that you have — that’s not you. It’s simply your destructive programming. You learned to feel like that. It’s a mental and emotional habit of yours, but it’s not you.
As you keep reminding yourself that and detach the ‘not enough’ from your identity, it will be easier for you to overcome it.
You are good enough for God
The fact that you were born, means you’re good enough and lovable in God’s eyes.
Here’s the thing — you are good enough simply because you exist, and you don’t have to prove your ‘goodness’ or worthiness through achievements. Your value as a person lies in the fact that you exist.
Think of your pets, for example. They don’t have to prove themselves to you to be good enough for your love and care. They are good enough just because they were born into this world and they deserve all the love, warmth, and kindness you can give them.
Listen to specific meditations
In my audio library, you can find a specific program that is targeted to remove the toxic, false paradigm that says you’re not good enough.
In addition, there are other empowering meditations that are designed to support you in your journey to heal your inner child.
Check out my unique mind training tool that can help you get rid of the thought patterns that make you believe you are not good enough.
Reframe Your Memories
A great technique I often use in my personal experience is reframing my memories.
I bring to my attention painful memories from the past that made me believe I was not good enough.
Then, I allow myself to feel the pain.
Usually, during painful experiences, especially as children, our body was stuck in freeze mode. So by letting myself reconnect with my bodily sensations, I enable the energy to finally move and get out of the immobility mode it was on for so many years.
After I feel the pain in my body, I reframe the memory. That means I create a healthy script of how I’d like things to be.
Repeating it enough times makes my brain believe the new script is the actual memory so that releases the pain and the stuckness as well.
You might want to do it with a practitioner since this can be a sensitive process.
In addition, you can reshape your conditioning by using the ‘overcome the programming you are not good enough’ tool I mentioned above.
Read Books for Healing Trauma with Practical Exercises
There are many books on self-esteem, but they’re not really addressing the real problem, which is your underlying conditioning that was formed in your unconscious many years ago.
Instead of looking for quick-fix motivational books that will make you feel awesome for a week or two, look for practical books on how to release trauma.
Dr. Peter Levine, one of my favorite somatic experiencing professionals, shares his profound knowledge and techniques in the book — ‘Healing Trauma: A Pioneering Program for Restoring the Wisdom of Your Body’.
The false, ineffective idea that we aren’t “good enough” ends up driving our life decision making process, especially our relationships and career path.
Our feelings of insecurity affect everything we do. It makes us more stressed, less joyous, less present in relationships, less goal-oriented. We’re also prone to reach quick fixes such as alcohol and junk food to comfort ourselves and bury the bubbling stress and pain of being who we are.
The early rejection you might have experienced from your caretakers caused you to keep looking for ways to impress others or gain validation.
As adults, trying to prove our worth becomes the intention behind everything we do.
But if you just internalize the ultimate truth that you are good enough just as you are and that you don’t have to prove yourself to anyone — you will set yourself free.