Adequate – Step Away From The Ledge


How does one fight feelings of inadequacy?

With Truth I barricade against my lies that I am not enough.  Of course I am adequate; and I fight to know that in more dimensions than just cognitively.  After all, facts change if you don’t believe them.

Take parenting for example.  Wow!  Sometimes I think that strangers would do better.  That the very parts of my soul those children hold would be better off with more distance from their home in my heart.  Am I inadequate to be a mother?  No, but some days I have to beg not to believe the lie.

In these moments of calamitous thinking, I am reminded of the term “all-or-none” thinking.  I am reminded that feelings of inadequacy drink from them like fat mosquitoes.  Catastrophizing is an egotistical view and nothing could ever be that bad or that good.  Not Me.  Not anyone.

Fighting feelings of inadequacy means being a friend enough to yourself to say, step away from the ledge.  To say,

you aren’t so special that you could be that terrible.

To fight right, you have to slide away from all bad into some of the gray area, and stop before getting to all good.  Because believing you are all of anything is just arrogant.

There are temperaments that do better in gray zones than others, those who feel comfortable grazing between thoughts and situations of life.  There are others, however, also.  People who almost seem wired to self destruct; whose own genetics thrash them towards polarity.  Those people are tortured, familiar with the often lonely fight I speak of.

To fight feelings of inadequacy, perhaps you fight your own design.  Hopeless?  Well no.  That is an extreme word and not to be trusted.  Remember at some level, that the truth is in the gray.

Self Care Tip #4:  Move away from the edge.  Be a friend to yourself.

22 thoughts on “Adequate – Step Away From The Ledge

  1. Nobody ever tells you that growing up.
    A friend of mine, who’s going through a tough time, has been watching Sex and the City reruns (for the first time) for fun. She mentioned how Samantha is so comfortable with herself and even says “I’ve been in a relationship with myself…”
    We must be oh so gentle with ourselves sometimes. Like a mother with a baby. We coax and feed and love and find happiness in growth 🙂
    Thought-provoking post, Sana.

  2. I was really encouraged by this post…until I read the part about “those wired to self destruct.” I have to confess that I also felt a little paranoid…after my recent posting about personality disorders and self destruction! Did I prompt your post? And why did you have to end it on such a discouraging note?!

  3. “You aren’t so special that you could be so terrible” in 12 step programs there is a statement that goes something like this “you are not terminally unique”. I am not so unique that I need to isolate myself with drugs, alcohol, food, shopping, sex . . . . etc. you get the idea.

    It seems socially that we have created this lie (that we all hardily perpetuate) that we need to be all, create all, and be the very best at it. Parenting, work, relationships, all of it. What pressure we put on ourselves, our children, our friends and family our co-workers. Yes, we strive to do the best we can each day with what we have, however, its the intent. Ego. Are we doing the best because of a sense of satisfaction for the day, because we chose it, not because we had to.

    The intention is very important here. A sense of self and boundaries is very important, but, to keep that balance.

    I had a polarities conversation with someone today. The more we strive for something the more elusive it becomes. Be still and wait, allow “it” to move to us, and allow ourselves to be ready for when “it” comes. That’s hard, that’s Faith.

    Grey zones. Hmmm . . . . I like grey zones, there is breathing room in grey zones. I like to think of grey as the blank white area around a painting or the mat on a framed photo, the pause in a piece of music, or subtle pulse in a dance movement, barely there, but an essence of movement. It allows the pieces they surround to stand out, clear and pronounced. Grey zones are a place to breath, to pause, to rest, to allow.

    The conversation I had with a friend today was about waiting, and feeling as if God had foresaken her, as she is listening and not hearing. And trust me if she were to be hearing this woman would be!
    I think that she was not supposed to be hearing, there was supposed to be a quiet “grey area” where she could just pause on the way.

    It can be hard to be still, to listen quietly and trust and have faith that its all okay. We live in this frantic world, where the grey areas are not always respected, we want it all in black and white and spelled out!

    Thanks for the great post!


      • Sorry, I missed this reply somehow.
        Strive for excellence . . . while modulating our internal milieu. milieu –
        : the physical or social setting in which something occurs or develops : environment.
        Got it, sometimes I just need a really clear definition of a word. Environment.

        My children in high school had a really hard time with this. How can I be me and yet be playing the game that is school and or life. I explained that its a game, and there are rules which we live by (play the game) and we can be who we are while still playing within the rules of the game. Who makes the rules for the game? Society, or environment. Okay, we live in our domesticated environment, and there are rules which we follow because that is what is expected of us. However, we can be free thinking individuals who go along with strong knowledge of who we are and what we believer in. Our own morals and values.

        I think that morals and values have had a bad rap. We have become homogenized to be part of a society wheel, rolling along. Our middle daughter just explained graduation ceremonies, “where everyone is dressed exactly alike while being told that you are an individual”. LOVE IT! We strive to teach our children to be individual, free thinking people. They have figured out how to do that somehow. Have they taken some knocks, oh yea. It can be lonely, however, they have figured it out and I admire them deeply. They see their world around them and the people in it and they can spot the people or situations to walk away from. Or allow themselves to be who they are and be within it and still come out the other end.

        How do we do this. We make a decision of who and what we are (morals and values) and we allow ourselves to be these people within the structure of our environment. As we develop over time we perhaps become more graceful in this place, not necessarily hitting people over the head with our own opinions and allowing other to have theirs. If we are comfortable with who we are and what we are we can allow others to be too, and the world to be as it is.

        I think when we have a sense of ourselves oh ya, confidence, then we can be in pretty much any situation and come out the other end.

        I have seen our eldest daughter almost dead on life support in a coma for 8 days with a serious brain injury, (she’s in 4th year university now and an honor student) THANK YOU GOD! I have helped my father in law to die at home from brain cancer, I have watched parents lose their son a year after our daughters accident, and yet we got to have our child and they didn’t. I have watched so many other families lose they loved ones at very early ages, and we have all somehow or other survived. My father in law, was Grace personified as he was dieing and all the experiences he went through and never complained ONCE! Not once. He ultimately reconciled his milieu with who he was. It was stunning to watch.

        It wasn’t always pretty, and we stumbled along the way, however we all came out the other end. With our morals and values in tact and re-enforced in many cases.

        The human condition is amazing. We strive to survive. I am beyond grateful for God, His Son and the Holy Spirit who moves me along!

        I am beyond grateful for your website and generous spirit of giving. Thank you!

        • i had to smile w “morals and values have had a bad rap.” totally agree. they r tired words for something of fresh beauty.
          celebrating your children, living yes!@ after such threat, and brilliance. celebrating yours and their confidence.
          grateful w u for God, His Son and the Holy Spirit. Grateful to share space w u here. (you’re welcome too 🙂 – hard to say for many reasons but one being that i have a hard time believing that i’m not getting way more from this than any one else :).) keep on.

          • Learning from others. I completely agree. I am a fitness inst. and I learn so much from my participants. More actually. Its real.
            “We keep what we have by giving it away” – saying from 12 Step Program. We all learn together, grow together, live and love together. Blessings for your day!

  4. …those wired to self destruct… those whose own genetics thrash them towards polarity. These phrases take some pressure off. This state of being was beyond my control. I did not wire myself nor pick the genetics. Going grey sounds good.

    Nice to have reinforcing words. Very meaningful post.

  5. We must always remember to tell ourselves the truth. We ain’t perfect but we are more than just ok being who we are.

    When I think about the lies I told myself–and believed!–I am amazed

  6. One would think that, at 70 years of age, one would feel comfortable in one’s own skin. It’s a huge disappointment to me that, in my case, that is not so. It’s uncomfortable to hear the words “not special enough to be that terrible” and apply them to ourselves, but you are right on in saying them! I’d never considered being special and being terrible in one thought. Interesting. A lot to think about here.

  7. I sometimes feel quite inadequate, but I don’t feel so bad about my imperfections anymore. None of us are perfect, so why would I be ashamed that I’m not perfect, either? I have finally learned to pretty much be happy with my shortcomings. I agree with how you say that we’re not special enough to be that terrible. I didn’t think of it that way, but it’s true. Who are we to think that we are that much different than anyone else in regards to our imperfections? I’m imperfect and proud!

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