All you have to do is turn on the television, check out a magazine, or log onto the internet to realize that the media is blasting us with the message that we’re somehow “not enough.”
Coming at us from all sides are messages that we’re not pretty enough, smart enough, rich enough, popular enough, skinny enough, successful enough, healthy enough - whatever enough.
But then if you step it up a notch - really pump up the volume - you get the opposite message. “No! Now you’ve gone off and overdone it! Now you’re ‘too much.’ You should be less intense, less honest, less sexy, less smart, less complicated, less personal, less talented, less ambitious, less dramatic, less emotional, less fierce.
The message being sent is that somewhere between “not enough” and “too much” is a perfect setting on the dial that every one of us should emulate - maybe a perfect 7 or something.
Well, I’m here to tell you that’s total bullshit.
Here’s the real truth. If life is a dial from 1 to 10, some days you’ll be a 1. Others you’ll be an off-the-charts 11.
I know how it feels to be on both ends of the spectrum. I feel pretty good about myself when I'm doing what I do best. But when I stray out of my narrow zone of genius (into, for example, the scary, nausea-inducing world of internet marketing or the even-scarier challenge of making any extension of my hand- like a tennis racket or golf club- hit a ball), I instantly feel like I’m lacking. Even when I'm pinching myself, living in the world I always dreamed of being in, like when I spoke at the Hay House Ignite conference and was surrounded by beautiful, famous, talented visionaries, I found myself numbly stirring my Perrier, wondering why I was the only one at the private cocktail party not talking to Louise Hay or Wayne Dyer or surrounded by a crowd of gushing authors. Was I not interesting enough? Not popular enough? Not pretty enough?
No matter how much I become, I always have moments of self-doubt and insecurity, during which I second guess my value in the world.
I can listen to my Inner Pilot Light, who is my biggest cheerleader and who is absolutely certain I have value in this world just because I’m a spirit in a body who’s connected to All That Is and that’s exactly enough.
But in the stray moments when I’m not listening to the wisdom of my soul, I’m going to be a 1 on the dial and feel “not enough,” and that’s just how it rolls.
Other times, I feel pressure to dial it back, tone it down, be less… everything.
Truth is, I’m a lotta woman. I’m intense and passionate and emotional and occasionally gifted, and on my good days, I’m pretty fearless, and that means some people get scared shitless and run screaming in the other direction when I walk into a room.
I’ve had bosses who’ve asked me to stop over-delivering. I’ve had friends “break up” with me because I’m “too intense.” I’ve dated men who thought I was “too emotional” and exposed too much of my heart. I’ve dated others that told me I was awesome but I simply made too much money and they couldn’t handle that.
In fact, I’ve had coaches politely suggest I might want to turn down my dial to make other people feel more comfortable. It left me feeling like it wasn’t safe to shine my light.
Some days, I’m a 10 and that’s just how it’s gonna be.
You remember Goldilocks? She ate the three bears porridge, sat in their chairs, and curled up in their beds because she was testing to find which version was “just right.”
There's so much pressure to be perfect, but keep in mind that there is no “just right” version of you. Wherever you are on your dial in this moment is exactly where I want you to be. You’ll have 2 moments and 9 moments and smack-dab-in-the-middle 5 moments. Some days, you may even have a 1 moment and a 10 moment right next to each other.
And that’s okay. Just feel what you feel. Be who you are. Rest comfortably in your 1-ness or your 10-ness or wherever you are in between.
Don’t judge where you are. Don’t make one setting better or worse than another. Just be with what is and let that be “just right.”
How are you feeling right now? Are you “not enough?” Are you “too much?” Can you manage to be comfortable with exactly who you are, how you show up in the world, and whatever level of confidence or sparkly, splashy brilliance you radiate into the world?
Share your thoughts.
Making peace with my dial,
Lissa Rankin, MD: Founder of OwningPink.com, Pink Medicine Revolutionary, motivational speaker, and author of What’s Up Down There? Questions You’d Only Ask Your Gynecologist If She Was Your Best Friend and Encaustic Art: The Complete Guide To Creating Fine Art With Wax.
When you comment on an Owning Pink blog post, we invite you to be authentic and loving, to say what you feel, to hold sacred space so others feel heard, and to refrain from using hurtful or offensive language. Differing opinions are welcomed, but if you cannot express yourself in a respectful, caring manner, your comments will be deleted by the Owning Pink staff.