What To Do When You Feel Inadequate
For the past few weeks, I've been struggling with feeling inadequate in different areas of my life. Whether it's this blog, my job, my business or personal things, I've been feeling anxious about not measuring up. I just don't feel creative enough, organized enough or qualified enough to complete the tasks in front of me. Quite frankly, it's a terrible place to be, especially when you're faced with amazing opportunities that you know are awesome, but then a little voice creeps in and says "that's too big for you, you'll mess it up".
I've said it before and I'll say it again, I know that my feelings don't dictate what's true at that moment, but it doesn't stop them from coming. Since I know I'm not the only person to feel this way, I wanted to share tips on how to battle the monster of feeling inadequate.
1. Take each task one step at a time
When I have a crazy amount of things on my plate, everything all of a sudden becomes so overwhelming that I feel paralyzed. I can't focus, I can't create and I can't figure out where to start. This is when the anxiety begins to build.
One thing that helps, is to not focus on your list of tasks as a whole. Prioritize what needs to get done first and deal with one responsibility at a time. Don't jump from one job to the next. Focus all your energy on completing that one thing and once it's done, move on.
2. Stop looking at what others are doing
Now is not the time to spend countless hours on social media dissecting the success of others. This is when it's beneficial to unplug and focus on yourself. Take some time to be reflective. What's going on with you right now that's triggering these feelings?
Even the people who seem like they have it all have felt what you're feeling now. No one has a perfect life. Something I learned when I did track in middle school is: there will always be someone talented in an area that you’re not. It doesn't sound as encouraging at first but it all depends on how you break down that statement. When I think of it, it reminds me that I won't be great at everything my hand touches. That isn't an excuse to do things halfway. I'm an advocate of doing everything you touch to the best of your ability, but I find peace in the fact that I don't have to be perfect at everything. You'll always meet someone that excels in a certain area; but realize when other people meet you, you'll excel in an area they don't. This is because we're all unique.
It's not about keeping up with the Joneses. You can't try to be parts of everyone else because you're ONE person. Trying to be something you're not, causes more harm than good in the long run. Everyone will have their thing, you just need to focus on yours and put your all into that.
3. Talk Back To The Voice in Your Head (And tell it to shut up)
You give power to the thoughts you constantly revisit. When you start voicing these thoughts, you solidify them. The next time a negative thought rears its ugly head, try voicing the truth. If one pops up that makes you feel like you can't accomplish something, verbally say you can. It's all about speaking things into existence. If a fake smile can turn into a genuine one just by doing the action, imagine what speaking your truth can do.
Crop Top: Forever 21
4. Switch Up Your Routine
Get out of your head and do something new. Go on a hike, read a new book, rearrange your room. Anything to break yourself out of your usual routine. A change of pace may be just what you need.
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5. Recognize Your Accomplishments
Take a look at all the things you've accomplished. Living in a technological age has made it too easy to take a peek into what others around the world are doing. The problem with that is we start the comparison game. When I start to do this, I have to remind myself that everyone has their own path and their own timing. You're not too late if you haven't reached a personal goal yet. The key word here is yet. Focus on what you've done and revel in that. You’ve accomplished stuff others couldn't do. You've been through circumstances that made life difficult but you made it. You stood your ground when everyone was against you. You earned that degree. Whatever it is, you did that! Be proud.
Mini Tip: Write it Out
I seriously feel so much better after writing down what I've kept bottled up in my mind these past few weeks. There's something about writing out your thoughts that is so therapeutic.