By Aimee Halpin
Each person has their own struggle with “enoughness” (yes, I made that word up, too). What does being enough even mean? What does it look like or feel like? Well, a synonym of the word is “sufficient” or “plenty”. And sometimes we can feel like we are not truly sufficient in our jobs, or maybe as friends, partners, or even parenting.
There is a lot of pressure in this world to be, well, perfect. But remember, perfect and enough are not the same thing and who wants perfect anyway? Not me. No thank you. I want to do my best and always work to be better than the day before and that to me helps me work on this feeling of being “enough”. But what about on days I “accidentally” scroll through Instagram and see the feeds of the “Yogis” out there on the beach looking all fly in their thongs, no lie, doing some yoga like it’s normal? I keep on scrolling. That’s not for me and that says more about them than it does about me anyway. Hashtag #keepingitreal
If I had a dollar for every time I privately chatted with a potential yoga client, wellness client, or Club member who thought that yoga was for people already in shape I would be rich. Don’t get propaganda and social media fake-accounts, because some of them truly are, confused with real life. One of the primary reasons I started the Head|Heart|Health Club was to provide that support so people could get out of their heads, drop down into their hearts, and start changing their health by doing what they really longed to do.
Trust me when I say the very second I committed to changing my entire life, I had doubts but they far outweighed my alternatives. That’s what makes me real. Approachable and authentic. It didn’t happen overnight but I damn sure wasn’t getting anywhere at all by staying still. It was like that terrible scene in The NeverEnding Story that traumatized you as a kid. The horse just sunk in the mud…and I’m here to tell you that if I can do it, I know you can too, so let’s get busy working. I am going to pull you out, and by the way, Atreyu got him back in the end.
1. Stop comparing yourself to other people.
Other people, well, they are comparing themselves to other people too, but it’s more than that. They might be telling you how to live, what to think, what to do, how to dress, or maybe you think you should look like them because they get loads of praise, etc. Some of it is real, and some of it is in your head. They do not have the most glorious life on the planet no matter how much it appears on social media. They still get up and put their clothes on like you, struggle like you, and have worries just like you. Remember that.
2. Get your head in the “game”.
Use whatever terminology you want here, but if you are in the past, in the future, in the clouds, in some other place, that isn’t now, you have to remember that now is a necessary step to moving forward no matter how hard now actually is. Now can go from being the worst moment ever, to being the spring-board into a new way of thinking. Now can be embraced as the point you decide to take back your life. Now can become a whole new place for you. Life is composed of tiny moments of now and some of your best now moments might be in the making, but you have to focus on this one. Repeat as needed.
3. Don’t listen to everything you think about yourself.
As I was working with someone I said to them, “Your mind is telling you this is hard because it wants you to stay stuck. It’s freaking comfortable there. You have a blanket fort and snacks, and it whispers thoughts of lies. But everything you want is on the other side of that place. You want to change your body image. You want to change the way you start and stop a program. I know for a fact you can do this. Make your hard “place” your new comfort zone. Work so much in that area that if you miss a day there, you feel uncomfortable. That was how I made it through over 200 hours of yoga teacher training when I could barely hold myself up on my wrists. When I couldn’t do the entire pose, I didn’t give up. I modified. Modify and tell yourself this is your new comfort zone.” Modify your thoughts. Stop telling yourself you can’t and say, it’s a start. I can at least do this much today, and that will be better than what I did yesterday.
4. A bad day does not end your progress.
I had a really bad weekend because I did the opposite of what I knew I should do. I caved in for someone I love. (Note to self, listen to your gut.) But it wasn’t the end of the world. In fact, it made me so mad that I pushed even more in my ongoing workout and nutrition challenge…one that seemed almost impossible when I first started it. And then I thought, okay, I have seen that things do not come easy for me, so now I know that one cheat day makes me feel worse. There was a lesson here and I have to move on.
5. Your gratitude cannot be ignored.
You have a choice to feel grateful for the things you have or to ignore them. I want you to know that when I ignored the things I had, when I was in my worst pain, diagnosed with yet another disease, my pain intensified. When I took time out of my day to start or end with my gratitude list, my pain decreased. As I was thinking about all the things I had to be grateful for, my heart would feel full and the part of the brain that reduces stress is stimulated by such good thoughts, that it is scientifically proven to work on turning your day, your week, your life around.
6. Daily practice makes you stronger.
As you work through your doubts, fears, and worries, you replace them with affirmations of strength, sayings of “I am enough”, and gratitude practices, but the truth is you are flexing that ability to change your thoughts. To believe in yourself and your immense power to change. It doesn’t matter what you are facing, you can truly overcome what you once thought you could not do. As you focus on your power to change, to move forward, the entire universe works to help you by showing you little signs that you are truly on the right path. Notice those signs.
7. Each day is up to you…don’t give that away.
As you stay in this moment, this hour, this day, think about what brings you joy. If you have the chance to pause between choosing an action that does not bring you joy, like arguing or stressing out over things that haven’t even happened, try to choose the moment that will give you greater clarity. You are enough. You have enough. You are worthy of choosing the better though. Take it.
8. You have survived all of the worst moments of your life.
I know this is used often, but hold on a second. If this is your one life-line thought, use it to your advantage. Run down all of your worst moments and think about how far you have come. Use your struggles as stepping stones. I know I sure do. Trust me, there have been some pretty dark moments, some days when I wasn’t sure what would come next, and then I slept on it. Got up the next day, and started all over again working towards making this life one I am proud of. No one said life was going to be easy. It really is what you make of it.
9. You have gained more than you have lost, and you have become someone stronger.
This one is very difficult to wrap your head around…especially if you have lost people you care about. I know for a fact that everyone I have lost would want, no matter how they went, no matter the circumstances, the best for me in life. The year after I lost my grandmother to cancer was particularly hard for me. A few years after that, we would discover that I had a genetic disease, not one, but 3, that were not curable, but could be maintained with proper care, throughout my life…however long I was given. I thought of the grace, strength, and faith of my grandmother. I thought of her simple Southern phrase: The Lord willing and the creek don’t rise. And I made sure that I was willing to do the work I was called to do because I know for a fact that I was called to help others. Use your situation in the best way you possibly can. Start something new, and use those gifts from your loss, pain, or feelings of not “enoughness”. Because I know for a fact that someone out there is watching you and thinks you are strong. You just don’t know it yet.
10. Get still and listen to your inner self.
I write for everyone, so you can replace “source” with what you believe, but remember to get still each day, at the end of the day, and listen to your guide. Pray, meditate, journal, affirm you are enough and put in the work. It will happen for you. I know it to be true because I have seen it in my work with hundreds of people that I have worked with as well as in my own life.