Am I Enough?Jan 31, 2021
You know what's scary? Our inner voice.
I have kept a journal for many years, although I don't write in it every day. I do however, go back and read through to see my progress. I was preparing for a masterclass I was hosting in December 2020 and found a journal entry from October 2013.
As I read it, I could feel it in my bones and it sent a shiver down my spine. I know I was trying to convince myself of what I was saying. I know what I was thinking and feeling at that time. I know I was drowning. It was around the time my insomnia was bad and I was slamming the keyboard, throwing in exclamation marks to try and convince myself.
Welcome to my October 17, 2013.
“It is 6:30am and the window is open. I can hear sirens, the bus, the breeze. It is the early mornings that make me happy. Even though I am tired, on 4.5 hours of sleep and feel nauseous because of the lack of sleep, I still like to cherish these times in the morning.
I take a moment and breathe in. It's the city, it's Boston. Today’s exam probably won't go that well because I haven't studied nearly as hard for it as other exams. Actually, this semester has only been mediocre studying, but I’ve been doing a lot.
A thought just came to mind that I haven't thought of in a while—one year from now, no matter what grade I achieve today or tomorrow or the day after, will it matter? No, but potentially yes, and this is what is scaring me.
No, because at the end of the day as long as I am passing dental school, I get to be a dentist and I know that I will put in 100% effort to make sure my patients get the best care possible.
Yes, because I don't know if this grade will affect if I get into an AEGD program? Do I want to specialize? Are my marks high enough? Do I have enough on my resume? Will I be enough?
I think the last question is the most important. Am I enough? Am I enough? Am I? That is the question at the end of the day.
So how can I tell myself I am enough, if I don't know if I am enough? Believe! Believe you are good! Believe in yourself! Believe you are in the right place, at the right time, and you have worked so hard to get to where you are today and guess what? You're here! End of story. Enough said.”
When I reread this, I realize I still ask myself this question, “Am I really enough?” I immediately messaged my best friend and sent her my journal entry. I told her that my the inner voice, that negative narrative, that I have created for myself is so intertwined in my being that I have to consciously make an effort to stop these thoughts from running wild.
Her response, "I sometimes hear my thoughts and think what the hell am I saying. No wonder I don’t have any confidence in myself.”
This is the truth. This is the blatant truth. It sits right in front of my face. It’s simple. Yet, for some reason, it is easier to believe the negative then it is the neutral or positive.
Today, I still work on this. Today, I make a more conscious effort to catch my runaway thoughts because they don’t serve a purpose. They aren’t protecting me; they are destroying me.
How will you make a conscious effort to alter your inner voice or negative narrative?