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Last Updated on November 27, 2020

10 Things to Do When You Think You’re Not Good Enough

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10 Things to Do When You Think You’re Not Good Enough

Have you battled against feelings of worthlessness? Irrespective of whatever a situation demands, are you feeling not good enough, like you’re falling short?

If you do, the first thing you need to know is that you are not alone. In fact, we’re all in this together.

I strongly feel every individual encounters this phase when life asks extremely tough questions. And just because we cannot answer every unpredictable question, most of us develop a feeling of hopelessness.

However, these trying times are essential for your transformation into a stronger and more positive individual.

Feeling not good enough can make you or break you. I’m sure you want to make your way ripping those dark clouds hovering over you. Are you pumped up for the challenge?

Here are 11 things to do when you think you’re not good enough.

1. Stop Comparing and Competing

Everyone is wired differently. But the problem with most of us is that, in the quest to become like everyone else, we lose our originality.

With that, we lose an integral quality: self-love[1].

The never-ending comparison with people can evoke a sense of worthlessness, especially today when social media feeds are full of amazing photos to compare out lives to. However, these tidbits don’t represent the complexities of life.

One study found that “participants who used Facebook most often had poorer trait self-esteem, and this was mediated by greater exposure to upward social comparisons on social media”[2]. The more you compare, the worse you feel.

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Take a moment to admire the great things in your own life, and only compare yourself to who you were yesterday.

2. Recall Your Past Achievements

If you can feel you are not good enough, trust me, you are capable enough to feel proud of yourself. Any positive emotion from your memory book can uplift your mind and rejuvenate you.

Be it the smallest thing, any sense of your past accomplishments will help negate the feeling of uselessness.

Switch on your positive reminders. It’s the perfect antidote.

3. Deactivate the Thinking Mode for Some Time

Fortunately, this isn’t as hard as it sounds. The mind is a powerful thing, and in a nanosecond, it can elevate or crush your mood because of the beliefs lurking behind your feelings.

When you think you are not good enough, remember it is just the frequency and quality of thoughts that need to change, not you.

Everyone encounters these hard times where you can’t do much to change things. The best approach is letting this phase pass without overthinking.

Instead of thinking and worrying, do something to take your mind off the negative thoughts. It could be exercise, painting, reading, or talking with a friend. Find what works for you.

4. Express the Negativity

Expressing negative emotions is imperative. It is the quickest way to unburden yourself from the misery of feeling not good enough.

Simply put, whenever you sense something is not right around or inside you, speak out! It might require valiant courage in the beginning.

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If you don’t have someone around to speak out, write out your negative feelings in a journal. This is another way to offload the thoughts that are causing you problems.

5. Choose the Right Person to Share Your Lows

You just cannot unveil your pure unfiltered emotions in front of everyone. This involves a level of vulnerability that demands trust and safety.

When you are expecting a shoulder to lean on that is not there, the effects of feeling useless may intensify and aggravate your pain, so this choice must be a careful one.

Make sure you flush out feelings of your hard times to one who knows you well. You may not get the advice you’re looking for, but you may get the strength to go through the tough times if you know you have a support system behind you.

6. Offer an Act of Compassion

Compassion literally means “to suffer together.” Among emotion researchers, it is defined as the feeling that arises when you are confronted with another’s suffering and feel motivated to relieve that suffering[3].

Yes, one of the best ways of reviving your higher self is by uplifting others. When you fulfill the emotional or financial needs of others, not only does it bring a smile to their face, but it also makes you feel content.

Don’t believe me? Try it!

Whenever you’re feeling like you’re not good enough, follow compassion. Try out some of the ideas below if you don’t know where to start[4]:

If you're feeling like you're not good enough, practice kindness.

    7. Focus on the Process Rather Than the Results

    Do you frequently think about the possessions attached to success before achieving something?

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    It is a common syndrome with many people in this fast-paced, materialistic world. We think about the name, fame, and luxury attached to success so much that when we come back to reality, it leads to frustration and impatience. We simply lose focus that adversely affects the execution of the process.

    Why? Your mind refuses to endure because it has tasted success in imagination. Then, insecurity seeps in to provoke the thought that you are not good enough.

    Wondering what to do? Resist the temptation to overthink success by developing self-control.

    8. Work out to Experience Liveliness

    Feeling not good enough? Most of the time, a small workout session is all you need to push yourself back to life.

    Any form of exercise not only detoxifies your body but also releases happy hormones in our mind. You don’t need to hit the gym every time; there are many exercises to help you stay on track from home.

    A healthy body and mind is the best combination to recover from your lows speedily.

    9. Stop Fulfilling the Undue Expectations of People

    Are you always trying to fulfill others’ expectations of you? Most of us have been doing this for a long time.

    If yes, you are digging your own grave. Not only will you lose people, but you’ll also lose your individuality. If it continues, you won’t be able to respect your priorities. It is bound to evoke the feeling of uselessness.

    Learn to say no to expectations and, instead, follow your own path with the people who accept it[5].

    10. Stop Criticizing Life and Start Appreciating It

    Are you blessed with the basic necessities of life needed to qualify for happiness—food, clothing, and shelter?

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    If you are this fortunate, you are ahead of most of the world’s population. So, whenever you think you are not good enough, just stop and appreciate your life for all the blessings it bestows on you.

    A healthy sense of gratitude enables you to see the bigger picture, and you adapt to demanding situations better.

    If you’re not sure how to develop a gratitude practice, check out this article.

    Final Thoughts

    “All of life is peaks and valleys. Don’t let the peaks get too high and the valleys too low.” -John Wooden

    Look on the bright side! You are one brave individual who has the guts to accept that something isn’t quite right. Not only that, but you are also ready to fix it.

    If you are not feeling good enough, that means your feeling quotient is working fine. And that’s great!

    The only concern is the uncontrollable negative thoughts that drive you away from positivity. What you need to do is slow down the thinking process and gradually revive your positive self.

    Always remember:

    Whenever you feel down, you need to handle yourself with extra love and care.

    More on What to Do When Feeling Not Good Enough

    Featured photo credit: Ivan Karasev via unsplash.com

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    Reference

    [1] tiny buddha: What Self-Love Means: 20+ Ways to Be Good to Yourself
    [2] Psychology of Popular Media Culture: Social Comparison, Social Media, and Self-Esteem
    [3] Greater Good Magazine: What Is Compassion?
    [4] Blessing Manifesting: 56 Random Acts of Kindness Ideas
    [5] Happy Realization: Either you are nude or naked; know the difference?

    More by this author

    Amanpreet Singh

    Amanpreet Singh is a soulful blogger by passion and a mindful businessman by profession.

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    Published on October 14, 2021

    How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome

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    How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome

    Do you ever worry about being exposed as a “fraud?” You’re not alone. It’s actually quite common for people to feel like imposters. In fact, approximately 70 percent of people admit to having experienced impostor syndrome[1] at some point in their lives — a Twitter poll found that 87 percent of people have experienced this.[2] Even successful and famous people like Tom Hanks, Howard Schultz, and Natalie Portman suffer from imposter syndrome.

    But, what exactly is imposter syndrome. And, more importantly, how can you silence it?

    Originally coined in 1978 by psychologists Pauline Rose Clance, Ph.D., ABPP, and Suzanne Imes, Ph.D., the term “impostor syndrome” describes symptoms that include being unable to internalize accomplishments and being afraid of being exposed as a fraud.

    The individual may also be plagued by chronic self-doubt and believe that they’re unqualified for success despite evidence to the contrary. Inadequacies, fears of failure, and disbelief that success is a matter of luck or timing are also common.

    If you don’t address this phenomenon, feeling like an impostor can prevent you from achieving ambitious goals. Moreover, those experiencing these feelings tend to over-prepare or procrastinate — which obviously hinders productivity and reaching goals. And, as if that weren’t bad enough, imposter syndrome prevents you from pursuing new challenges and opportunities.

    Do you feel like you’re suffering from impostor syndrome? If so, don’t beat yourself up. After all, there are effective ways to overcome these feelings in a healthy and proactive way.

    1. Don’t Hide It.

    “Firstly, acknowledge it,” advises Claudine Robson,[3] the Intentional Coach. “You give strength to imposter syndrome by letting it continue to peck away at your confidence unchecked.” It can only be banished if you acknowledge it as soon as possible and break the silence.

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    “Then you need to separate your feelings from facts,” Robson adds. “One thing imposter syndrome does very effectively is to mix up your perceptions of reality.”

    If you can, take a step back and look at the situation objectively. “Recognize when you should — and when you should not — feel fraudulent,” she says. Appreciate and acknowledge the task, intellect, and insight that have led to your success.

    You might even be able to take action by recognizing that the reason you feel fraudulent is that you’re new to a task. “That gives you a path forward; learning is growth, don’t deny yourself that.”

    2. Implement the STOP Technique

    In her book Cognitive Enlightenment, Melinda Fouts, Ph.D., outlines a technique to overcome imposter syndrome using what she calls the STOP technique.

    “STOP is an acronym for ‘silence the oppressive player,” Fouts explains in Forbes.[4] “You need to eradicate this tape that is playing 24/7, whether you are conscious of it or not. It plays loudest when we are tired, hungry, or feeling defeated.”

    Steps to implementing the STOP technique and rewiring your brain are as follows:

    To replace the tape of not good enough, you need a “launch sentence.” “I’m more than good enough” would is an example of a solid launch statement.

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    Put your launch sentence in prominent locations, such as your car’s dashboard or computer. How come? The reason is that as the tape plays, you won’t be able to remember your launch statement.

    Continue to say “stop” until you recall your launch sentence, says Fouts.

    Put your launch sentence into your own words and pontificate.

    While going about your daily tasks, like while driving or exercising, practice your launch sentence so you can recall it when you need it in the future.

    “I am told this sounds simple and it does,” she adds. However, this technique is challenging when your negative tape is playing. You will not want to replace the tape every day while your brain is rewiring itself. “It is these moments you can’t give up.”

    3. Distinguish Humility and Fear

    When it comes to hard work and accomplishments, there’s humility, and then there’s fear. In other words, having a high level of competence can lead one to discount its value occasionally. However, as Carl Richards wrote in an article for the New York Times,[5] “After spending a lot of time fine-tuning our ability, isn’t it sort of the point for our skill to look and feel natural?”

    The problem is that we feel unworthy from time to time. But, as Seth Godin explained in a blog post,[6] “When you feel unworthy, any kind response, positive feedback or reward feels like a trick, a scam, the luck of the draw.”

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    Feeling worthy without feeling entitled is possible. And, finding the right balance between them is critical for overcoming impostor syndrome. “Humility and worthiness have nothing at all to do with defending our territory,” Godin continues. “We don’t have to feel like a fraud to also be gracious, open, or humble.”

    4. Keep a “Brag Sheet”

    When you were sending out college applications, did you build yourself a “brag sheet?” If not, here’s a clean description from Shawna Newman,[7] “A brag sheet is very similar to a student resume – it highlights your accomplishments, key experiences, leadership skills, and employment throughout your secondary education.” In short, “it’s a quick reference guide with all the details and achievements for someone trying to get to know you better.”

    While it may be awkward at first, you can apply the same concept when coping with imposter syndrome. Just compose a list of your accomplishments, activities, skills. That’s it. Just remember Godin’s advice and also be humble and gracious.

    As an added perk, besides being an effective way to talk myself up, I’ve also found that this has helped me stop comparing myself to others. Instead of harping about other people’s milestones, I’m honing in on what I’ve done.

    5. Celebrate Wins, Period

    Speaking of accomplishments, they shouldn’t be categorized as small or big. After all, you feel as if you don’t belong when you have imposter syndrome. So, the more you celebrate your wins, the more confident you’ll become.

    Furthermore, accept compliments without qualifying them and practice listening to praise every day. Finally, become kinder to yourself by saying at least one kind thing to yourself daily. And, give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back.

    6. Assemble a Legion of Superheroes

    “You know how corporations have a board of directors to — in theory — make them stronger, maintain checks and balances, leverage resources, and help advance the organization’s vision?” asks inspirational speaker, speaking coach, and creative consultant Tania Katan.[8] “Why not assemble your own board of directors to leverage resources to help make your career stronger, keep you in check and balanced, and advance your vision?”

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    “My friend Alison Wade, president of conferences, training, and consulting at Techwell, calls her personal board of directors her “front-row” — those are the people she invites to sit spitting distance from the stage, cheer her on, challenge her, and review her performance,” Katan writes.

    As for Katan, she calls hers a “legion of superheroes.” The reason? “I dig the idea of joining forces to do good in the corporate galaxy.”

    It’s important to have a diverse group of individuals who will defend you. Ideally, they should be varied in all dimensions, such as cultural background, way of thinking, and skills.

    Katan recommends that you meet together frequently, whether if that’s once a week or every quarter. “Share your experiences, fears, creative ideas, aspirations,” she adds. “Celebrate each other’s accomplishments.” You also need to both support and challenge each other. “Discover what you are capable of doing when you combine your powers.”

    7. Visualize Success

    Follow the example of a professional athlete by imagining yourself crushing that presentation or project. You’ll enjoy the relief from performance-related stress. And, more importantly, it can help you avoid focusing on the worst-case scenario.

    Final Words of Advice

    While there’s no single formula to cure imposter syndrome, the tips listed above are a start. After all, your success depends on your ability to fight the negative effects of it. For example, feeling unworthy over time can lead to crippling anxiety and depression if left untreated.

    If you’ve tried the above, then make sure that you speak to someone about what you’re experiencing, whether it’s a mentor, peer group, or licensed professional. And, above all else, there’s a place at the table for everyone — no matter what your inner voice is telling you.

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    How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome was originally published on Calendar by John Rampton.

    Featured photo credit: Laurenz Kleinheider via unsplash.com

    Reference

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