Ever struggle with feeling enough in one way or another? I definitely have. I’ve recently felt rejected and un-liked when I was doing my best to facilitate a relationship where I was being my genuine self. Early on in life, I learned to gauge who people want me to be and adapt so that I am liked. People pleasing. It’s something I have been working to overcome so that I can be at peace in my own body and have honest relationships with those in my life.
When we decide to not be true to ourselves to make other people feel more comfortable, we go to war with ourselves. Additionally, it is relationship suicide to any type of relationship: friendships, family, romantic relationship etc. We are ultimately giving up on someone and writing them off as incapable of handling us before they even had the chance to meet us in a real way. If you have a relationship with someone, and they don’t know the real you because you are afraid to show up as your true self, who do they even know?
If you’re pretending in certain areas around a person, the relationship is ultimately fake. What would happen if you showed up as the real unadulterated you? Maybe, they’d abandon you in disgust, but MAYBE they’d stick around and love you anyway. Maybe, for the first time, you’d have an authentic relationship with this person.
By giving ourselves permission to just be who we are, we choose to be at peace with ourselves. Every minute of the day for our entire lives we are with ourselves. The relationship we have with our self is the single most important relationship we will ever have aside from God. By daring to be authentic, we attain peace inside, and we facilitate relationships where we are actually known and seen.
Ever feel surrounded by people but completely alone? Loneliness is an epidemic. So many people express feeling alone, but they don’t realize it’s often a prison we create for ourselves. Let’s stop trying to fit in and instead, just be ourselves which will allow us to attract people who we BELONG with.
After my divorce, I slowly started to learn how to be my authentic self with most people. I struggled most to overcome my people pleasing tendencies with Christians. I was so afraid of their judgments that I just let most Christians believe that I was on page with common Christian dogma and widely accepted beliefs. I wasn’t really a big part of any churches, and my core people knew who I was, so it didn’t feel like a big deal.
When Erik and I started singing at church, I felt like a fraud. I did not agree with many commonly believed things in the Christian church in general, but no one in the church really knew what I believed. It felt very wrong.
At one point, I opened up and started having some awesome email discussions with a pastor that I have come to greatly respect and value. I said some pretty edgy things that I haven’t even dared to put in this blog yet, but he heard me out and sought to understand my heart. We have a mutual trust in each other’s heart for God. We don’t have to agree on every little thing to know the other loves Jesus and is seeking truth. Those conversations actually were a big part of what gave me the courage to start this blog and share my heart with the rest of you.
When I had my leukemia scare, I realized that life is too short to go to war with ourselves to make other people comfortable. If I was going to be a part of churches and ministry in any way, shape, or form, the true beat of my heart needed to be out there. Whether people liked the real me or not, I am enough. I am His. Sometimes, when you’re judged and disliked for being real and honest, this is hard to remember.
The other day, during my morning Sadhana (time with God) I was journaling. I noticed that I had some stuck energy. It had been an emotionally exhausting few days, and I definitely had some stuff I needed to process through in a healthy way.
In the past, when I don’t like how I’ve been treated or how someone is acting towards me, I shut down and retreat emotionally and sometimes, physically distance myself from the person or people. There is no communication. There is just my own quiet boundaries and a separation with the individual. God recently spoke to me about keeping my heart open and gently sharing my hurts or triggers with people rather than emotionally shutting down and freezing off to them to keep the peace but ultimately, ending the authenticity of the relationship.
I went to a Kundalini Yoga class later that morning. For those of you who don’t know, Kundalini is an extremely powerful yoga practice that helps move and balance energy.
Apparently in Kundalini Yoga, it is common to cry. For years, I’ve heard my teacher mention this in class. I found it interesting that I never really had that experience in my many years of practicing this style of yoga.
Anyway, in that yoga class, I noticed myself resisting the hard parts and wishing I could just plow through it, be done, and on the other side, feeling great, and having my break through. Obviously, this is not how these things work. You have to actually be present with yourself and your uncomfortable feelings. I recognized this, took a deep breath, and actively readjusted my mindset and decided to be present with myself and the practice.
At one point, my teacher started cuing the class. She mentioned that what we were doing could help us with feelings of not feeling enough. Until that moment, I didn’t consciously realize that what I had been battling was in fact, not feeling enough. I was being myself as kindly and gently as possible, but I felt rejected despite my best efforts to peacefully be different. As the realization hit me, so did the water works. My first real cry in a Kundalini class. It kind of felt like a rite of passage.
As my desired breakthrough came around, I felt a cool, slow, steadily moving stream of clarity, peace, and balance replace the stuck energy. God reminded me that I didn’t need to have people agree with me or even like me to be enough. My value has nothing to do with anyone else’s view and opinion of me. My value comes from inside of me.
The only opinion that matters is His. He says we are loved (Romans 8:39). He says we are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). He says we have the mind of Christ (Phillippians 2:5). He says when we feel weak He will strengthen us (Phillippians 4:13). He says we have in us a spirit of power, love, and a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7).
If you are struggling with feeling worthy or enough, please breathe in the fact that you are more than enough. You are worth the time it takes to be understood even in your big ugly emotions. You are worthy of being comforted and held in your hurts, fears, sadness, anxiety, anger etc. You are worthy of being met with tenderness and compassion.
Even if no one else is able to do that for you right now, your worthiness of it does not change. Learn to re-parent yourself and do it for yourself. Adult you, right now, can show inner child you the kindness, patience, and tenderness you’ve been seeking externally. When your inner child starts to feel seen and important BY YOU, life begins to shift radically. You are worth your time. You are enough.