One of my beliefs is that I should be doing more. More work, going on more adventures, taking more advantage of (fill in the blank).
It’s a series of thoughts that seem true to me. Of course I should be doing more work if I want to ask for a raise next year. Of course we should be venturing out more if we are in a city like Portland, Oregon.
What I’m doing right now never seems like it’s enough to propel me forward in life.
The effect of these thoughts is that I start to believe that I’m not enough.
When I think that I’m not enough (especially at work), I start to do all these things to prove my thoughts true. I focus on what I’m not doing, who seems to be doing more, the perceived inadequacy of my work. I also find myself checking Slack and email constantly, just in case someone needs something and I can be right on it.
The effect of this is that I do less of what I was hired to do: Lead.
I focus more on me and scrambling to make myself feel better about feeling inadequate and less on what the company might need.
Ultimately I stay stuck and nothing moves forward.
By writing this out, I can see this thought error for what it is: Optional.
This optionality lets me know that I could choose to think a different thought instead.
What feels believable to me right now is the thought, “I was hired to lead.”
This thought makes me feel driven and fuels actions like thinking bigger picture about the business, creating processes for the team, reaching out to other people in similar positions to see what works for them, etc. The result is that I do more of the things that will actually move me and the business forward.
Fascinating, right? When I shift the focus away from me and what I’m getting or not getting and look more at the value I could provide, I actually get more done.
This is something I see in my clients all the time. They create this tug of war in life where they feel inadequate and then try to take lots and lots of actions as a way to feel better about themselves. This never works.
The only way to feel better is to drop the rope and look around at what is actually happening.
When they see that they are creating their feelings of inadequacy and unworthiness with their thoughts, they can work on changing the thoughts instead of trying to fix themselves through actions.
Eventually they can work toward the belief that they are 100% worthy and enough just by being a human person on this planet.
Nothing more is needed.