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How to Stop Believing You’re Not Good Enough

Insecure

“All that we are is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think we become.” ~Buddha

Have you ever heard the phrase “your thoughts create your reality”? Have you ever wondered what this means?

Go back to your childhood and recall a time when you got into trouble. I am sure you have at least one of these memories. This doesn’t have to be a major event. It can just be a time where you were scolded for knocking over your drink.

Now remember your parents’ reaction. Were they angry or frustrated? Did they yell or give you an annoyed look? Did they send you to your room?

How did it make you feel? Most likely you felt like you did something really bad or that you were bad.

This feeling, multiplied by all your other similar experiences, created a belief within you. Through this belief you probably, without your knowledge, created a reality of being bad or not good enough.

Now fast forward to the present and watch these memories from a new perspective. Have your friends join in. What are your thoughts now? What reactions do they have?

Through different eyes, through different perspectives, we see and experience different realities.

Here is a personal experience of mine. I was maybe six or seven, and my family and I were sitting around the kitchen table frosting cookies. This was an annual event at our house. We had all the colors of the rainbow of sugary, spreadable, delectable frosting.

I was using the green frosting, spreading it oh so carefully on my cookie. When I was finished with the green I set the knife back into the frosting bowl. The knife, not secure in its vessel, tipped backward, sliding gracefully out of the bowl with a loud and splattering of green onto the linoleum floor.

I don’t remember exactly what my mother said but I do remember her being upset, and I remember feeling like I really messed up and ruined things for my mother and the rest of my family. 

This experience, along with other similar childhood situations, created a belief that if I did something wrong I would make someone angry or ruin a situation—essentially, I would be bad.

So what did I do? Whatever I could to not elicit a reaction, including staying silent.

Now we are going to fast-forward to the present. I can look back at this situation with new eyes. I didn’t do anything wrong. I didn’t ruin the situation, and my mother wasn’t mad at me or even angry.

The knife was too heavy and long for the shallow bowl, which caused it to tip. It was beyond my control.

My mother’s reaction was one of frustration not because of green frosting on her easily moppable floor, but probably because she had a long day taking care of four kids and a house and was stuck in an unhappy marriage.

Similar scenarios often happen to us as adults. I am a natural introvert. Walls are my friend.

In a crowd of people I usually remain in the shadows, merely observing the happenings around me. In my observations I will notice groups of people maybe glancing in my direction while continuing to talk.

My thoughts then go into super sensitive mode and create stories of being talked about. My thoughts go on an imaginative ride of insults and attacks, all on me, by those people across the way.

Now I feel attacked. I am no longer having fun. I no longer want to be where I am.

My thoughts created a false reality out of nothing. My thoughts had no basis in fact, yet they created a reality for me, true or not.

Perspective can change the reality of any situation. Really, what is reality but an experience? And if everyone has a different experience from a different perspective, then doesn’t that mean there isn’t just one reality? That reality results from the arbitrary thoughts of many people?

If we can acknowledge that each person’s thoughts and memories of a same experience are different, then can’t we admit that our thoughts of our experience are no more valid than the next person’s?

If we have formed opinions about ourselves through the eyes of our thoughts and we have concluded that thoughts have no basis in truth, then aren’t our opinions of ourselves based solely on our thoughts, not truth?

Is it possible to re-look at our thoughts and see them as just thoughts formed from different perspectives of memories?

Are you willing to redefine your opinion that you’re not good enough with re-formed thoughts of being more than enough?

Can you choose to see your thoughts as the controlling factor of your self-worth?

If you can acknowledge that they are arbitrary thoughts, then the reality formed by said arbitrary thoughts are no more valid than a stranger’s thoughts about you.

From here on out choose your thoughts wisely, because in some way they will be your reality.

Insecure man image via Shutterstock

About Rebecca Mckown

Rebecca Mckown is a writer, creator, yogi, gardener, herbalist in training, chicken rancher, green juicer, lover of life and kick ass spiritualist. She is a whole living guide and happiness coach helping people navigate their lives in a spiritual, loving and authentic way. Connect with Reb at rebmckown.com and facebook.com/rebmckown.

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  • Andrew

    Thank you for this article. I am an introvert and maybe live with my thoughts too much also.

  • Bullyinglte

    I spent a few years allowing my thoughts make my reality. I try to tell people now that your thoughts and your eyes are not windows to the world, just windows to your mind and whatever your mind is saying is what you will believe. I have found mindfulness practice, like Yoga, working out at the gym, meditation, and gratitude journaling have helped me to realize the authentic me and that he is good enough. Thank you for your article.

  • Rebecca Mckown

    I fully agree with you that mindfulness really helps center your thoughts and brings your reality inward. Thanks for the comment. Have a wonderful and mindful day.

  • Rebecca Mckown

    You’re welcome Andrew. I hope the article helps. Once you are able to see your thoughts as being in control of your reality you will be able to stop before your thoughts get out of control and create a false reality. Have a wonderful day.

  • Daniela

    So very true. Although I so wish my worst childhood memory was of an icing situation and not being beaten by my parents over something I could not control. Then dealing with kids in school who tormented me, and a life full of feeling isolated…I could write a book. However, I treat people very well…just disappointed that I can never feel better or be treated better.

  • Analyst

    Thanks Reb for the article. We have all heard it before in may other ways but cannot be said enough and in different ways to actually make it sink in. That is the problem with principles that are essentially self-evident. They are so self evident that we don’t really grasp their true impact on our lives.
    The only problem I have is that the heading is a bit misleading as it perhaps under-delivers but I don’t blame. It is very very difficult to actually implement any thought/behavioural changes and self perception. We all know logic and explanation and 1000s of articles rarely do the job for us humans. How many times have we tried to change others and ourselves with little to no success? The self help industry with all noble intent suffers from the same problem – we’re humans and not logically thinking, objective machines. We “suffer” from emotions, values, other prior (poor beliefs/references) etc.

    Perhaps the only viable change approach that is when it is rooted in deep self compassion as it creates a positive emotional connection with the intended change intent – a sort of re- framing. A lack of self compassion is normally the root of most our ills which can lead to active self sabotage and the associated stuck stages and poor beliefs we experience/have.
    Let’s be good friends to ourselves – I know it’s hard 🙂 Good luck!

  • Many people have the belief that others are thinking about them. This is so far from the truth. The reality is, they are too busy thinking about themselves and how they look and sound to others. So if you are a wallflower, they are not wasting too much time thinking about how you are alone in the corner, they are busy thinking about how they look to others.

    Then you get to midlife and realize that no one ever really cared about what’s going on in your life (except maybe your parents) because they are just too busy making sure they measure up to their peers.

  • You are right Rebecca. I find that when we are able to look at a situation with multiple perspectives, it will give us the ability to choose our thought and the feelings in a way that empowers us.

  • It may be less of a question for how to stop feeling not good enough and more of a question of what does a super sensitive person do in situations where their sensitivity isn’t well received?

  • So true, Rebecca. For me, realizing that I have certain thoughts about a situation which another person involved apparently doesn’t have, helps me to also to forgive that person. We all make our own interpretation of something happening to us, but we rarely realize that this doesn’t have to be the truth. Understanding one’s own perspective is absolutely game-changing.

  • I think this article needs to be read by many. Feeling unworthy is main problem for so many and a killer in any life endeavor. Thank you for sharing! I checked out your website and signed up for your newsletter!

  • I so agree with you Emily! Uses – everyone else is busy thinking what other think of them! So funny!

  • lv2terp

    You make excellent points! I like when you say..”then can’t we admit that our thoughts of our experience are no more valid than the next person’s?” Thank you for sharing your perspective/this message! 🙂

  • Rebecca Mckown

    Thank you for commenting. Have a beautiful day!

  • Rebecca Mckown

    So happy to hear that Lolita. I seek to inspire and to shed the light that we are all worthy and deserving of utter and pure happiness. I am so glad to have you a part of my journey. Have a beautiful day!

  • Rebecca Mckown

    My thought that is if a person’s sensitivity isn’t well received that would be the issue of the other person/people. We must remember that it is our thoughts that create the story of the not well receiver. If in fact they have an issue with a super sensitive person’s reactions then they have their own thoughts to contend with. We must learn to accept ourselves fully, sensitive or not, and feel fabulous with our selves no matter what reaction or judgment we get from others. I would love to talk further if you would like. Have a beautiful and confident day.

  • Rebecca Mckown

    Absolutely Martina. Understanding that it is perspective and not fact is the key. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Have a great day.

  • Rebecca Mckown

    What a great way to approach it, by looking at a situation from many perspectives we can’t get trapped in our initial stories. Love it!

  • Rebecca Mckown

    Like. That is exactly it. We aren’t the center of the Universe as our ego’s want us to believe. What we need to focus on is being the Center of our own Universe and lighting up the world with who we are, which is Greatness. Thanks for sharing.

  • Rebecca Mckown

    I so agree that self-compassion is essential. Once we are able to accept ourselves for who we are and love that self then we will no longer create negative thoughts. Why?Because we will know that we are perfect just the way we are and other’s so believed opinions of us will not be valid.

    Thank you for your deep thoughts. Have a beautiful day.

  • Rebecca Mckown

    Daniela, My heart goes out to you. I have to challenge your last thoughts. I have no doubt that you can feel better and be treated better. Sometimes it is as easy as changing your thoughts about yourself and others. This in no way means that the treatment you encountered as a child is acceptable. It is completely the opposite. Your experiences have heavily weighed on you and it is now time to release that weight and move forward. Don’t let the past stop you from living a magnificent present and future. Please reach out to me I would love to help you release you from the confines of your past. rebmckown@rebmckown.com Sending lots of support and love your way.

  • JOIE JAMESON,R.N.

    You speak of ” Virus of the Mind” by Richard Brodie.”~It’s a book worth reading.

  • I’m still here

    The heading was a double negative

  • Analyst

    Too many deep thoughts, too little action 🙂 Just by accident I stumbled over your great site, great material. Need time to digest. Loved your Manifesto. Moved me nearly to tears. Beautiful – have tried mission statements (7 habits) before and never was able to truly connect to it. Love what you say. As Covey used to say “the most personal is the most universal”. How true.
    Lots of work to do to blow away old conditioning and negativity. Yearning for Freedom! Sure I’ll be back to you with some other comment.
    Thanks for all!

  • Rebecca Mckown

    I hope you stay connected. I love connecting with like minded people and finding ways to inspire one another. You should try out the Manifesto. It was very freeing. I actually need to do more things like that. I agree that through our vulnerability we help light the way for others. Have a grand day and stay in touch. -Reb

  • Connie

    I understand how you feel. My childhood my parents faught. My mother constantly trying to commit suicide. I was alone in my own world except for my grandparents who loved me. It took a long time for me to speak. My family thought I was mute. Be still is all I ever wanted. Peace and calm.
    I grew up to have bad relationships. Raising four boys on my own and now I’m a grandma I still have not found love from a partner.
    But I do love other’s with all my being. Get along wonderful with even strangers.I would give my only dime to help.
    Yet I wonder why sometimes. How much I love do bad things happen. To have love in return.
    You get exhausted. Depressed. You can’t go on. But your love for others keeps you going.
    Because you are love even though it can be lonely.
    Know you’re not alone and although my words may not help at the moment. Tell yourself if anything and this is true. You are not alone always reach out.
    Wishing you love and the sweetness of inner peace.