Are You Good Enough

There are many definitions of stress. The one that I like best is this one: stress is the difference between what you think others expect from you and what you can actually do. What you think you’re expected to do is based on reflexive learned social, cultural, and family norms. It is not based on who you are, or what you can really do. In any situation, you are good enough. You just have to believe it. And not believe someone else’s expectations. One of my expressions is, “Don’t believe in what others think, believe in what you know.”

Too many people go through life, performing what they think others expect them to do. It is a lot of pressure (stress) that comes from what we’ve been taught. Feeling pressured into doing something different than what they really want, or pushing themselves to somehow fit into a situation better. The results are anxiety, depression, and medical illnesses.

The trick to changing our stress level is to truly believe that you are good enough. That takes trusting in ourselves and what we can do, and being O.K. with what we cannot do. What we do will be perfect. Not the dictionary definition of perfect, but by a higher definition of perfect. Perfect, in that we did the best we could, in that particular moment.

Don’t be fooled by what usually happens. After something goes wrong, we look back and say, “Oh, I should have done it differently. I could have changed how I did it.” That line of thinking is typically not correct, because now you’ve seen how the situation unfolded and have information that you previously didn’t. So in the moment, you did the best you could have. You tried your best. That is perfect. It couldn’t have been any better.

The next time you start feeling stressed out, stop for a moment and think about why you’re feeling pressured. Nine out of ten times it will be caused by pressure you put on yourself, as you reflexively raised the performance bar on yourself. It may seem like someone or something else expected you to, or pressured you, but it is really in your control.

You are good enough. Your health and happiness depends on it.

Ryan Seay, Ph.D.

2 Responsesto “ Are You Good Enough”

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