This month we are talking about Mental Barriers. My life has been defined recently by my largest mental barrier: not being good enough. Or, I suppose I should say thinking I’m not good enough.
When in recovery this was a struggle – what if I’m not strong enough to recovery? I’m not “disciplined” enough… I’m not strong enough… I’m not “special” like the people who recover. All lies.
Now I am through recovery (and thus have proven wrong all of those previous statements) and yet my barrier remains.
Whether it’s a new job, a request for help, or an amazing opportunity, my first response is no. Not “No I won’t do it” but rather “No I can’t do it”.
And even though I have an army of people around me cheering me on, with complete confidence in me (the same way I have complete confidence in them), I still cling to this single phrase: I’m not good enough.
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Truth be told, if I really dissect it (my favourite thing to do!) I think the phrase is more “What if I’m not good enough?”
At its core, I think this barrier is more about fear than anything else. Yes insecurity comes into play, and yes pessimism does, too; but mostly I think it’s about fear. The fear of not being good enough, the fear of letting people down, the fear of not measuring up – of failing.
It’s amazing the power fear will take if you let it – it can completely handicap you and keep you from moving forward, keep you stuck standing in one place while you hesitate to even take one step forward for fear you mess it up.
This is not living. This is not thriving. And this is not justified.
The truth is we are capable of far more than we give ourselves credit for.
And any voice that tells us otherwise (whether it comes from within us, or from the outside) is a lie.
Sure, there are something I cannot do – for example, I probably couldn’t become a successful accountant – why? Because I work in words, not numbers, and the thought of money sends me into a panic attack. But here’s the thing: I don’t really want to become a successful accountant. Why? Because I work in words, not numbers, and the thought of money sends me into a panic attack. I hope you are getting my point?
I believe we are all created with passions and desires that relate directly to our abilities.
If you are passionate about something and feel the desire to do it, then this means you are also equipped to do it. Sure there may be some training along the way, and a few mistakes and trips (of course!) but you will still be able to do it. You will be capable.
The same can be said for recovery – anyone can recover. There is nothing “special” about those who do it. We are not the “chosen few” – if anything, we are the few who chose it.
When you really want something, and you are driven towards it, and you have your eyes, heart, and mindset on the goal, you will succeed. Maybe “success” won’t look exactly how you thought in the beginning, but you still will succeed.
But calling yourself “not good enough” or assuming failure can be a self-fulfilling prophecy – so don’t let it be. Fear is the enemy of progress, but fear of this type cannot exist unless we bring it into existence.
And so even though I know it’s easier said than done, this month I encourage you to start breaking down your mental barriers – whatever they are – and for those of you who struggle with not being good enough, with self-doubt, with fear, I want you to know you’re not alone. I want you to know I am with you. And, most importantly, I want you to know that like any other mental barrier, it is something within us that can be broken down. It doesn’t have to control you and it certainly doesn’t have to define you.
So that job? That big opportunity? That goal? That thought of entering into recovery? DO IT – because you can, and as soon as you embrace this truth, you will.
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The opinions and information shared in this article may not represent that of Libero Network Society. We hold no liability for any harm that may incur from reading content on our site. Please always consult your own medical professionals before making any changes to your medication, activities, or recovery process.