Words make us laugh. They make us weep. They seize us in uncontrollable rage. They also can calm us into angel-like tranquility. The power of language is self-evident.
But what would you say if I tell you four words will help you achieve anything you want in life? Too good to be true, eh? And, what are they anyway?
“You are good enough.”
Yes, just that. Two decades of working with language closely developed my sensitivity to language, particularly how it influences the way we experience ourselves in the world. Language is not merely a tool that we use passively to communicate. It also acts upon us. It defines who we are and how we think and feel.
“You are good enough” speaks a “can do” attitude that will drive you towards your goal. It stops your self-sabotaging thoughts like, “Is it possible for me to achieve that?”, “Am I good enough to do that?” or “What if I fail?” Instead, it directs your attention to “How can I achieve it”, thus opening your eyes and leading you to new possibilities. It anchors your mind in a positive, uplifting state where you can harness your potential to achieve what you want for your life.
“You are good enough” echoes a positive feeling that is desirable in and by itself. But you may ask, “What if I don’t believe that I’m good enough? After all, there are so many things that I don’t feel good about myself.”
My dear reader, you are not alone in thinking like that. Luckily, there’s an easy exercise that can help you get out of that “I’m-not-good-enough” mindset.
Now take out a sheet of paper and a pen (or anything you can write with), and write down ten things you feel good about yourself. Don’t think. Just write. Your answers may surprise you!
Now read them aloud. Does it make you feel good about yourself? I bet you do (In case you don’t, it could be a sign of trauma. You might want to see a professional therapist). Deep down in my heart, I believe, for sure, that you, my dear reader, are unique. You are good enough. You can achieve anything you want for your life.
If you like this exercise, you can also try inviting your friends to share with you the good qualities you have in their eyes. Trust me; you will love them!
Now you’ve collected all your good qualities, from your friends and yourself, start creating your I-am-good-enough board! Include all those words you get and put a picture (or a photo, a drawing) along with the words—one depicting the situation when you achieved your life goal. Images help the brain visualize easily. Or you can get creative and work with any form that appeals to you, as long as it gives you the feeling of “You are good enough.” Once you’ve created your I-am-good-enough board, put it on the wall or anywhere you can see easily. In doing so, it’s like you are practicing the “I am good enough” mantra every day!
For me, I especially like poems. The following poem is one I wrote for myself when I was struggling with the feeling of “being not good enough” and scared of what others might talk about me. In writing it, I found the courage to be just who I am by appreciating my uniqueness. Every time I read it, it makes me feel on top of the world!
I’m a Pretty Pretty Peacock
I’m a little little peacock
in a big big world
I’m known for my iridescent tail
When I spread the covert out
It forms a flashy train
But I had so much fear
That I was not good enough
not agile when I was with cats
not fierce with dogs
And not powerful with tigers
I simply forgot to look back at my tail and see its colors
But when I do remember
I keep telling myself that I’m a pretty pretty peacock
So much that the saying starts to act back upon me
I’m a pretty pretty peacock
In a big big world
I’m not afraid to be seen
I’m not afraid to be talked about
It’s not a big deal that I’m not agile like a cat,
fierce like a dog
or powerful like a tiger
These qualities do not mean much for a peacock
It’s not a big deal that
cats, dogs, and tigers can not appreciate my beauty
It’s not a big deal that
They don’t like me
I don’t need it as a pretty pretty peacock
But I’m grateful for them, all the same
They teach me to understand what I’m made of
They teach me to love myself
In this big big world
We are all different
Yet we all seek nourishment, belonging and fulfillment
We all desire to love and to be loved
We are more similar than different
And we all live in this same world
Sometimes I can see the cat, the dog or the tiger in me myself
Sometimes I can see the peacock in a cat, dog or tiger
Hence familiarity in the other
And otherness in the self
We can agree to disagree
And find harmony in diversity
What a beautiful world we live in
In this big big world
I’m a peacock from outside
But deep inside I am just ME
And I can be anything I choose to be
I’m beautiful for who I am
My beauty comes from within
The peace and power in my mind and heart
Nobody can be ME better than myself
If you were an animal, what would you be? I hope by reading it, you discover the unique beauty and power hidden in you as well so that from now on you know that YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH, and you are going to achieve anything you want in life.