From a very early age I have battled with this warped sense that ‘I am not enough’…
Like so many of us, I have an annoying internal voice that recites monologues to me at the most inappropriate hours in the most unpleasant and overpowering theatrical body-voice imaginable saying things like – you are not smart enough, loud enough, talented enough, skinny enough, pretty enough, political enough, smiley enough or fast enough – sharp breath – you are not bold enough, creative enough, friendly enough or successful enough – sharp breath – you, kiddo, are just not enough.
I have a few theories about where this voice came from and although I’ve worked long and hard to make that little fucker decrescendo to a pianissimo, it is still there waiting in the wings for something or someone to trigger it.
NO MORE REPEAT SIGNS motherfucker! *Chocolate peanuts BE GONE!
Now, I’m now 31 years old and I’ve realised I will probably live with this acerbic cunt of a voice for the rest of my life, so I need to figure out some ways to deal with it and the volume in which it harasses me.
Let’s workshop some simple ideas and strategies together…
- When you feel like you aren’t enough, look outwards and explode with love bullets
- Some of the most meaningful things I have ever done have been born out of what felt like interminable darkness. Instead of focussing inwards, I got to a point in my life where I chose to reach out instead. My community choir – Cheep Trill – grew out of a feeling of loneliness and failure while I was living in New York. I decided I wanted to fall in love with music again and bring it back to basics whilst trying to create a supportive local musical community and fill some hearts with joy, maybe even heal a few – including my own – along the way. To so many, this simple act of bringing people together each week to sing might not seem like much. But through this group I have found meaning and purpose and I truly feel like I am contributing and helping my community with the skills and the knowledge I have. Look outwards. Try to help others. Maybe start with the people you know and love (it can be devastatingly easy to forget this!). As someone Australian and famous once said in a well-known song: “From little things big things grow”…
- Put on a dirty pop song and dance in front of the mirror like a maniac
- When ‘the voice’ has me by the balls I like to take off a lot of my clothing and dance in front of the mirror like a maniac. There is no scientific research that I know of to explain why this feels so good (and even if there was, I kind of like the mystery), but just try it. I highly recommended attempting “the snake”…but not on concrete.
- Run that cunny of a voice away
- Put in your headphones and go for a walk or a run. Drown the bitch of a voice out with the sound of your panting. Run fast. Run true, little unicorns.
- Stop talking about all the things you want to do and bloody do them
…or at least start putting the wheels in motion! You. Can. Do. It. You. Can. Do. It!
- Find your tribe and dress like a lion(ess)
- Find the people who make you feel good about being you and hold on to them. They are your tribe. There might only be one. There might be ten. Whoever they are, cherish the shit out of them. They will be the ones who catch you when you fall, and you must learn to catch them too. It needs to work both ways. And seriously, get a lion costume, some leopard print and paint your face. It works wonders.
- Remember that you are exactly where you need to be
- The feeling of not being enough might make you want to fast track the learning process and you might feel more inadequate or worse off than when you started. You’ve got the tools. Be patient.
- Eat a salad
- Just eat a fucking salad.
- LOVE – This is a tough one for many but try not to over-complicate it. You don’t have to say “I love you” after every conversation or at the end of every text message. Just open your little heart and it might come gushing back in too. The world needs more of this exchange. Go forth brave love warriors and just fucking love. Allow yourself to be happy. Don’t intellectualise something so magical. Go with it and… *surrender.
*Chocolate peanuts BE GONE: This was something my body attack instructor, Luke, once said during a pre-Christmas workout. An inside-joke I share with my little fake sister, Indigo that has always stuck with me and made me giggle.
*Surrender: I have this tattooed on my forearm in Italian as a daily reminder. I got this ink in Florence when I found myself fighting against the flow of life and love. I didn’t want to fight anymore.
Hush. Be still. It’s going to be ok.