Are You Good Enough?

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Are you good enough? A poll was done by One Poll it shows that up to 80% of millennials don’t believe that they are good enough. Now, this was covering only millennials but I believe that if they expanded this to cover Gen z and Gen X you would see that this is close to the case of many folks across the board. Most people have a level of inadequacy that is similar to the Gen Y crowd. Yeah Gen X may not express their anxiety of not feeling up to a task but at the same time, I see that they have a key factor that millennials don’t. That is time on this earth and we will get in that detail soon enough.

Inferiority complexes come from many different factors. It could be that you wanting nothing but positive affirmations from other people. Are you always looking for someone to compliment you? If they don’t say something nice are you wondering if there is something wrong with you? Perhaps someone criticizes or expresses their opinion of something you did or how you look.

I remember back in the mid-’80s there was a background that I thought was just way too cool to not have. It was the classic laser background that most kids had a picture of at least once in their angst-ridden life. Well, this one time they had this particular backdrop and I voiced that I wanted the laser background and I overheard a classmate say in a slightly mocking term, “Yeah I want that background” I almost didn’t get that picture in that background out of fear that I was looking like a dork. I suddenly thought that I would be viewed as a dork. Well I was a dork and I am now very much OK with that status, but it took a while to overcome that thought. I didn’t see myself as good as the other kids because they didn’t get excited about a particular background.

Drawbacks of having an inferiority complex

As anybody who has the feeling of having an inferiority complex. You know there are several problems with not being “Good Enough”. There is a lack of friends because you may feel that everyone is judging you. You may not ever take that first step towards something great because of the What If Negative thought patterns. What if they laugh? What if they hate it? What if I use the wrong words? What if something horrible happens? If you focus on something long enough it happens. That is where self-fulfilling prophecies come from. People say they know something bad is going to happen and boom something bad happens. That is because they are so focused on it that the laws of attraction cause you to be compelled to take steps conscious or otherwise to make sure the event happens.

The Drawback is that nothing is done because you don’t feel like you are worthy. There is always someone judging you and guess what you are not wrong. People are always judging each other. They make a judgment call about whether they are going to eat at Burger King or the local Salad Bar. Many people with inferiority complexes tell others to not judge. Well, they can’t help it, and neither can you. Yet if you are not good enough you always see that finger pointing in your direction. It can be nerve-wracking.

Then the stress of it all can cause you anxiety and panic attacks. If you let your feelings run loose, they will run away with you. You have that even scarier sensation of losing control. This keeps you from having friends and meeting goals.  The lack of having friends has their own sets of problems. That lack of connection in your life can cause depression. In your later years has been shown to having a link to developing Alzheimer’s.

At the heart of all inferiority complexes is fear. Fear is the biggest bear in the room. Fear is a huge problem. It is the unknown or the possibility of something happening. You may have had people laugh at you for something goofy or even made a dumb mistake. We all have fear but a light side to being scared you can get over it.

Feeling overwhelmed

Another problem with not being good enough is you start to feel overwhelmed. Which is also tied to the emotion of anxiety. Yet these days it appears anxiety and feeling overwhelmed to have so key ties to today’s society. Overwhelm is when you are trying to do too much. Often it is described as treading water and your mouth is barely above water. There is often a lot that is put on one’s plate. You have social media, keeping up with the Joneses, all that life expects of you, even being a people pleaser is just a few items that can contribute to the problem of being overwhelmed.

Overwhelm only adds to the feeling of not being good enough. Because you are “supposed” to do all this adulting stuff and things, keep slipping through the tracks. There is so much to do and you are failing! How did your parents or even your friends seem to do it with such ease?

You can be stressed out when you feel like you are not good enough
Photo by Christian Erfurt from Unsplash

Social Media

Many millennials and even Gen Xer’s are on Social media. Now there is lots of good that comes from social media. We can connect with others. New and dear friends have been made thanks to the internet and social media. Yet, there is also a lot of comparison going on. We see Instagram stars who only picture the glamorous adventures we are having. Their hair is always great. Men are surrounded by cool cars and hot women. They dress nicely with a great set of muscles. You see this and you think you don’t measure up to their standard, and guess what you don’t measure up to their standards. Why? Because that is their standard and there is a good chance that they don’t measure up to their standards either. You have your standards if you want to change then you need to change how you view yourself.

There was a sad fad for a while that girls thought that the thigh gap was supposed to mean they are sexy. When in fact it was overly skinny girls wanting themselves to feel like they are adequate and they are good enough. This causes many young women to start taking their health down a dangerous road with starving themselves because they were told that is what is attractive when most men would easily stand up and say they like girls with meat on their bones. They don’t look at the gap between their thighs.

Photo by nikko macaspac from unsplash

The one thing that social media doesn’t show you are the struggles people have in their day-to-day life. People believe that this one thing will bring them happiness and fulfillment. When in reality the people who look successful have their own happiness. Skinny girls have their own problems they are not just happy and content just because they are skinny. Men having the favorite car doesn’t bring anybody happiness. Happiness and joy are only giving to yourself. You will not be happy about being your idea weight until you are happy with how you are now. Sounds strange I know but it is true because joy is an emotion that only you can feel.

I had a problem with this after finding an old High School friend, I saw his life and the places he was traveling to, the fun times he was having with his life. I saw that he was single and going out and enjoying life. At first, it bothered me I was feeling jealousy and resentment against myself for choosing to marry so early. My friend had his own business and looked in my eyes that he was successful. This caused me to question what I had done in my whole adult life. I started to get down on myself resenting many of the choices that brought joy to my life.

I changed how I look at what my friend had and instead of wishing I had his carefree life of travel and other adventures I changed the mindset to where I wanted to be there. Instead of wishing my boat was over there, I decided to steer my boat to where I wanted it to go.

Keeping up with the Jones’

Now, this is an old saying that keeps many people in financial bondage. That in turn often creates undue stress on whether you are good enough. You see your next-door neighbor gets a new bass boat. You think you know how much he makes and if he can afford it then you should be able too. Yet there is a lot that you don’t know about your neighbor’s situation. The Comparison Game is a game of assuming the other person has it made. As the saying goes when you assume you make an ass out of u and me. Maybe you are trying to get a blog up and going and you see that you had three visitors last week. You look at a site that is an inspiration for your blog. Don’t compare yourself to them. They are 6 years ahead of you. You are just starting. At one time, that blog only had three visitors in a week.

Each person has their own life. Instead of focusing on one that you don’t have, look at what you do have. You have a happy family. My friend was divorced. I did have trying times so did my high school friend. There are struggles to have succeeded. You have to get uncomfortable if you do it the easy way you don’t develop the needed skill to stay successful. So yeah your next-door neighbor with the new bass boat is finding out that there are two days that having a boat make you happy the day you bought the boat and the day you sell the boat. He also has a large financial burden on his shoulders for an item that he only gets to use 3 times a year.

Photo by ricardo eiras from unsplash

Being too busy

We are all busy. Yet the biggest problem most people who are experiencing overwhelm is that they don’t guard their time. They take on every task that is brought to them. Their day is packed and often people hear them say they are too busy to do many of the fun things in life that would bring them joy. This lack of time is another huge contributor to feeling overwhelmed.

This is a problem for people who don’t feel they are good enough because they are trying to show others that they can carry a load that is way too big for them. Activities creep in and build up until the stack of to-do’s get so large that it starts to topple over, and then they feel as if they have failed. This failure just feeds the thought of not being good enough even more.

Pleasing other people

People pleasers are liars. There I said it, and I stick to that thought. Many people who are out to make sure they please everybody around them often say a thing just to make sure they made the other person happy. They accept any task you through at them because they don’t want to upset anybody and yet eventually they have to break their promise to one or more people because they couldn’t uphold their side of the bargain.

People who want to please everybody often feel the most overwhelmed and feelings of inadequacy because they know they are not being honest. They take tasks that they are not competent enough to actually handle and often make a bigger mess than help. I know this because I am a recovering people pleaser. I am learning that there is a priority list that has to be followed. That list is as follows

  1. God
  2. Myself
  3. Family
  4. Friends
  5. Work
  6. Others

Now may people question, why I put myself first? That is for the very same reason that you put your oxygen mask on before helping your child’s oxygen mask. You are no good to your child if you pass out. You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of your family and friends. This also is why I have started learning to say no. A 2-year-old finds out that this is a very powerful word. Yeah, we also learn that people don’t like to be told no. Yet you have to say no if you want to have time to experience peace and joy. If you want happiness, aliveness, and contentment, you have to say no. If they want to know why you can tell them if they don’t accept that answer that is their tough luck. One thing I have found from saying no is that yeah people get mad that they are denied your time but you also develop respect because you have set a boundary and you don’t compromise it.

How to break the cycle of inadequacy

Photo by Kyle Glenn

This task takes work, like anything worth doing. If you want to be able to achieve more find happiness in your life, you have to grow the balls to step out of your cave. Learn that Netflix isn’t doing you any good. You have to stop running from your discomforts. I recognize that this isn’t a walk in the park. You have years of trying to people please and taking on way too much failing so much you don’t see how you even have the skill to change. Change is possible we all can change. Maybe you have a fixed mindset and you believe that you are not able to change in any way and I will let you know that you can. It also takes work. This work is tough and you will fail often. Your feelings will get hurt. You may even be laughed at and made fun of if you do something you know is a rookie mistake.

The first part of any want to change is you have to be ok with yourself. Therefore, that may be a big goal. Not that you love yourself though you will get there, you see yourself as just alright. You start to build that base of confidence and believe in yourself you will have a firm foundation on making progress everywhere else.

Understand that this is just a feeling.

The most important part of being able to change understands that you’re feeling of inadequacy is just that a feeling. Your emotions are not created by anybody other than yourself. Therefore, the inferiority complex you have is all on you. Take that responsibility and own your dirt. Emotions are created by a thought you have. So if you think you can’t do something you feel inadequate. If you change that I can’t do that too, I want to learn how to do that. You change your set of beliefs to that of possibilities.

Your thoughts make your emotions which fuel your actions and cause your results. So if you think you can learn something you will approach that task with the knowledge that you are going to fail the first 20 times. However, that 21st time is going to give towards success. That will become another building block of confidence, and confidence comes from experience. So if you can’t do it, change your thought and try again.

Know what an opinion is

You are ugly. You are such a loser. You are such a dork. Know what these are, Opinions? What is an opinion? I know that sounds strange to ask but I have seen many times where people run on opinions as to the truth and completely disregard facts. The all-knowing Google says that opinion is…

A view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.

This means that you being ugly isn’t true. Now I do believe that if one person calls you a jackass that you can ignore them but if more than one person calls you a jackass then you might want to get a saddle. The difference between these two takes experience. You have to learn how to see that when there is an opinion and why that person said that horrible thing.

People often put down others as a means of making themselves feel better. Yet that doesn’t do the trick at all because resentment towards another person never feels good. You often are grumpy and in a foul mood and that is the farthest you can feel from joy and love. So you might want to feel pity for those poor souls who don’t like you because they are denying themselves the joy and connection of who you are.

You need to also quit making up excuses as to why you can’t. You give yourself opinions in the form of excuses. These are nothing more than lies we tell ourselves and they do just as much harm to as the person who calls you dumb. When you catch yourself being your own bully, stop the dialog and gently correct yourself.

Stand on your own feet

Many of those with inferiority complexes strive for complements. Now if you are familiar with the five love languages you know that words of affirmations are one of those love languages. There are also physical Touch, acts of service, quality time, and receiving gifts. So you may need words of affirmations and that is encouraging words to help you through your day.

Yet there are those folks who strive to get compliments. They ask obvious questions about their appearance, and if they don’t get those compliments, they feel dejected and often get upset. If this is, you then find out why you have to be complimented. What thoughts do you have leading up to you asking for a compliment? Those thoughts can change how you view yourself. If you have to have, a compliment then, start complimenting yourself. There is nothing wrong with liking how you look. Those words from other people are just used to create the thought you want to have. You don’t need the other person’s approval to allow that thought to happen. So look in that mirror and say, “You look damn good”. You can Rely on yourself to feel confident

Stop trying to keep up with the Jones’s

Comparison is the thief of joy. You will not find happiness in what others have. Again, happiness is not found in material objects or from other people. Joy and happiness come from you. Your thoughts make you happy. If you start thinking that if, you think that a new car is going to make you a happy guess again. You are basing your joy and contentment on impractical items. You can only find happiness from you.

Realize that you can only be you

This goes with Keeping up with the Joneses but we try to act like other people who we view as being happy. This is often from people we see on Instagram with huge smiles on their faces. They look happy and fulfilled and they very well may be but they are not you. They can’t make you happy. Adventures may be a good distraction but again it will not bring you joy. Many people lose weight only to find that when they lost their desired weight they are still not happy all the time. That again is because being skinny doesn’t make you happy. You make you happy. The only way you can achieve happiness is if you accept yourself for who you are and start being you. You find that there is only one incredible person in the world who is you and you just happen to be lucky enough to be that person.

Be different

My kids often ask me why I don’t have any tattoos. I tell them because I want to be original. Everybody else has a tattoo and to stand out and be original, they have inadvertently made themselves look like everybody else. Striving to be like successful people only brings you to feel inadequate. That is because you can’t be like other people. Accept that you are different. You have a goofy sense of humor. You laugh oddly. Embrace the fact that you are a snorter. Maybe you like to build towers with marshmallows and spaghetti noodles. You have a particular passion that is yours. It does no good to worry about what other people think. Tough I know and it is a daily struggle, but people admire those who let their freak flag fly.

Realize what is going to make you happy

You have a passion. Find that passion and peruse it. It may not make you money but it will feed your soul and give you the confidence to understand that you are adequate for your life. You are good enough. You have kept yourself alive this long so you are doing just as well as everyone else. Everybody struggles, not always with the same thing that is because each person has their own set of strengths. Find those strengths and be proud of them. You will find out that you have more to offer with that confidence.

Put down the phone

Social Media is a good thing. I have said that before. Yet being on it all the time does nobody any good. Go walking without your phone. Marvel in all the thoughts that come across. Yeah, you may have some internal arguments and you may even get angry. That anger will eventually fade away. If you want, more friends then put the phone down and talk to those around you in real life. The sad point is that social media and I use this in quotes “addicts” have problems making and keeping friends. That is often because they are feeling inadequate and inferior.

Try having a digital detox. A great thing to do is just get outdoors go camping for a few days. Bring a friend along. Even better, someone, you have wanted to get to know, invite them to go camping with you for the weekend. Without phones, you start to slow down and you see your potential friend with more detail.

Photo by Oleg Magni from unsplash

Drop the What if’s negative

One of the biggest excuses you tell yourself starts with the what-if and something bad. What if I fail? What if they laugh? When I find myself asking myself those questions, and I do often, I change the question to what if something good happens. What if I succeed? It may feel weird when you start asking that question but it does get easier each time you ask. What if you do succeed? You get that positive mindset going with those questions your brain will start working on making that good thing happen instead of the opposite.

Learn to laugh at yourself

Finally, one last tip is to learn to laugh at yourself. Accept that you are a goober and make life fun. If you can laugh at your mistakes, they don’t seem quite so bad. You don’t have to dive into putting yourself down but you can roll with the punches and laugh it up. Life is far too short to take seriously.

So are you good enough? Yes, you are. You can do what you set your mind to. It takes work especially if you were raised in a negative family environment. You can rise about the negative mindset and feelings of low self-esteem. There is an element of maturing, and experience needed to show to yourself that you can grow. You can change, and you can be better. If you struggle, you can always get a coach to help with the mindset shifts or perhaps you want to get out of your comfort zone and change even faster and join a group of guys who will help you out like in the Conclave of Men. Where each person wants to make sure, you become better. However, you want to grow and become the better person you know you can be there is a way. Good luck and talk next week.

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About Bryan Goodwin

I like being able to help people find their "why" and achieve the personal freedom they desire. Besides writing for Relaxed Male I also am a life coach. By helping men find the leader that is found in each and every one of us. I do this by encouraging men to get outdoors and find the balance they are missing. Realize that they need to be in contact with the outside as often as they can. It is not only good for them but for their families and relationships.

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