Enough is enough. That’s it! I had enough. I couldn’t take it anymore.
I had to hit my own self-determined rock bottom before I was ready to change.
Stubbornness took over as I just wanted to make things work. My blinders came on. I ignored the small and large warning signs and sped by all the flashing hazard lights that things were going wrong. I thought if I worked harder at it, it would eventually work out… right?!
That’s when I learned that the obstacles showing up were telling me that this isn’t the right path versus just challenges I need to overcome. (A fine line indeed!)
This could be applied to whatever that is for you in your life… your relationship, your career, a project you’re working on, investments you’ve made, etc.
You’re suffering some sort of pain or undesired results from this one thing you’ve been so focused on.
You rationalize why you continue forward
You’ve already put in so much time and/or money into this. You need to stay in it for the obligations, convenience, money, or status. The grass doesn’t seem greener on the other side. You’re scared of what would happen if you didn’t have it anymore.
So you continue trekking forward pushing through the pain
Now other parts of your life are falling apart. Drama or distance is surfacing in relationships. Your health might be suffering or ignored as a result. You’re mentally and physically exhausted, and things just seem to get worse and worse.
So when will you call it quits?
When is the pain bad enough that you’re finally willing the make the changes you need in your life?
When is enough FINALLY enough for you?
I had to face this several times in my life in various aspects and in varying degrees. The most recent one was overcoming all negative self talk to get to where I am now—pivoting into this new coaching niche.
I had this exact conversation with myself that I am currently sharing with you.
I realized the “enough” came at me from two different perspectives:
1. I felt like I wasn’t good enough
That was my biggest limiting belief that loomed over my entire life. It is also the cause of me being a workaholic because I had to prove to myself and others that “I was enough.”
It also held me back from what I truly wanted to do, which was to feel free to live my life on my own terms. But I also felt that I wasn’t good enough to deserve that.
I am my own harshest critic, and have said things like:
What makes me think I can do that?
Who am I to think I can do better?
I'm not good enough at that or qualified enough.
It just seems too hard or would take too much time, so I shouldn't try.
Compared to others who are less fortunate, I already have enough. So I should just settle.
Seriously, what the hell… I know the value I bring, and I wouldn’t let someone else talk to me like that. However, I allowed myself to take each gut-wrenching punch to my own stomach.
I shut myself down from even trying. I just kept on finding excuses to wiggle out of taking action towards what I truly did want. Then looking back, I would kick myself later and go “dammit, I wish it followed through and went with it.”
Now I've learned to step back and ask myself…
Good enough compared to who?
Whose standards am I comparing myself to?
What is making me feel like I'm not good enough?
How is feeling like that actually serving me?
What will I miss out on if I keep on believing this?
Break this mental downward spiral!
Take notice of what your limiting belief is and how has been holding you back from making that change you need. Leverage the questions above to ask yourself: Where did you get that belief from? Are you actually making a proper apples-to-apples comparison? How it isn't serving you anymore? (Hey, it used to do you some good by protecting you in the past. But you are no longer that person anymore, so you don't need to be protected like that any longer.)
2. I had enough of not feeling good enough
I finally had enough. No matter how strong and resilient of a fighter I was, I had to understand where my limits were. There are times when it’s smarter to tap out than to continue taking the beating. It’s time to stop… I had to stop making myself feel bad.
At that point, one enough ended up stacking upon the other: I had enough of not feeling good enough, too! Either way, as I see it, the word imposed limits on me―on my life and on how good I could strive to be. Nothing was ever “enough” when it came to giving it my all.
I would give all I had until it was done and done right for that one singular moment in time. But in the next moment, it wasn’t enough again. There was always more I needed or could be doing. But how much overextending and exhausting myself is worth all that?
I would give it my all in a relationship, but if the other person isn’t willing, then what’s the point? I sacrificed my own well-being and my own self-worth to fight for a relationship that wasn’t going anywhere or, even worse, toxic. I had to see for myself that I’m worth so much more than that. If this one man can’t appreciate my value, someone else will.
I can have as much faith and positivity as I want in hopes that whatever it is will work out. But I also have to know my own limits and set the proper boundaries, so I’m not draining myself dry or wasting my time.
You can only try so much before you’re just forcing the situation to work out when it isn’t meant to be.
That’s when we need to listen to ourselves — our higher self, our intuition, our gut, our heart, our higher source, or whatever you want to label it.
Ask yourself instead: Is this really worth the continued time and effort you put into it?
What you’ve given is already a sunk cost you can’t get back, but your future is priceless! You can take what you’ve learned and make it worthwhile. It’s never a waste. Take all of it as feedback on how you can do better in the future. And sometimes, we just need the opportunity to just step back and look at the bigger picture or see it from a different angle than what we've been blinded to.
There’s better waiting for you when you finally decide to let go of what you’ve been holding onto with your dear life.
There’s always another way.
Actually, you are more than enough.
Take all the time you’ve been spending trying to prove yourself to others, and channel that energy into what you truly want instead. No matter what happens next, trust that you’re capable of figuring it out. Remember any struggle is only temporary, and it only makes you stronger and better.
“Everything is figureoutable.” —Marie Forleo
Change who you compare yourself to
Comparing yourself to other people can only help you up to a certain point because you don’t know their whole story. You don’t know what they’ve done and sacrificed to be where they are now. You’re only seeing a sliver of their reality from your perspective. Most often, what you see is just their success on the surface or the side they curated for others to see. When it comes down to it, what you see is merely the end results you want for yourself.
If you want to compare, compare yourself to where you were before. See how much you’ve grown and changed since then. Strive to become a better version of YOU. That’s where the true apples-to-apples comparison could be. Everyone’s life and experiences are different, so those comparisons will always be apples-to-oranges.
Dream up a better version of yourself, and aim to be that.
Take notice of who you would have to become in order to achieve the goals you desire.
Yes, you have to become a better version of yourself to achieve those goals. Who you currently are can only get your existing results. You will have to learn new knowledge or strategies, establish a new habit, and let go of old ways of being that no longer work.
You cannot wait until the “right” time later to make those changes. It starts now. Choose to act like who you want to be with each decision to make going forward. That's how you become that better version of you.
Sure, you can be inspired by other people’s goals, and model what they’ve done to get there, but always remember you are on your own path. What you have to do, what you have to sacrifice, how long it takes, etc. are all unique to you.
You are not a cookie-cutter, copy-and-paste version of someone else, so don’t expect your results and progress to be the same as others.
You do you.
My self-discovery journey has led me to see that the person I am right now is enough to get started. I have the resources and ability to take that first step, even if it's just picking myself off the ground.
It is my choice how I want to show up in life. I take full responsibility for my results. I am capable of continue evolving and recreating myself into who I need to be to have what I truly want.
Don't give up without trying. Toss away any beliefs that you deserve mediocre or less. Stand up and fight for what's possible for you.
You are worthy of so much more. Just take that one step forward, then the next, and the next after. Let the momentum build from these seemly small steps.
Be proud to be a work in progress.
Revised on April 26 2022. Repost from Medium
Cover photo by Zoltan Tasi on Unsplash
April 22, 2022