Tuesday Toss-Up

Are You Good Enough?

Looking in the MirrorAll of us have asked ourselves this question at one time or another. Some of us ask it a lot. And it can mean different things depending on how we ask it.

Maybe we’re facing a challenge and wondering if our skills are up to par.

Maybe we’ve just put ourselves out there and we wonder whether our efforts hit the nail on the head…or missed the mark.

In either case, we can use “am I good enough?” to spur ourselves on, to get ourselves asking the questions we need to figure out how we can get better.

But sometimes we’re really asking if we are good enough. If who we are, especially what we look like and how “cool” we are is good enough.

Good enough to fit in.

Good enough to be accepted.

Good enough to be loved.

Those of us who grew up not quite fitting in know the pain of “am I good enough?” all too well, even if we’ve grown past it as adults. Then again, even those who belonged to the it-crowd probably asked themselves this question now and then. It’s a very human question.

Kristen Lamb’s recent post on Michael Jeffries’ (CEO of that clothing brand) abhorrent marketing strategy really touched me. Check out her post. It’ll make you think.

The older I’ve gotten, the more important “am I good enough?” has gotten for me, especially as a parent. I am a role-model to two (so far) impressionable human beings. How I ask and answer this question is critical to their development.

On the one hand, I want to always be growing and learning.  Good enough is rarely good enough, at least for things we are passionate about doing or things we must do well. I’m not terribly concerned with becoming an expert at changing my car’s oil but I am determined to become an awesome parent, a spectacular (and humble) human being and a great writer.

On the other hand, I want my children to know that they are always good enough to be loved just as they are. Each one of us is precious beyond compare. What you look like, wear or posses does not make who you are.

Beauty and fancy things have their perks but, in the end, they can do nothing for us a good character and a loving heart cannot do better.

What do you think? How do attitudes like Jeffries’ affect our self-image, especially kids’? How should we ask and answer “am I good enough?”

4 thoughts on “Are You Good Enough?

  1. Wisdom from one so young 🙂

    Inner beauty always has and always will outshine outer beauty, which fades, by the way. Inner beauty, on the other hand, grows with age.

    1. Just had another conversation about this with my daughter yesterday. I reminded her that true beauty is in the character and it’s the only beauty that matters in the end.

  2. It’s an interesting point you make – especially our own battle to exceed mere “good enough” ourselves, while wanting our children to know just being them is more than enough. It frightens me to think that someone could question their own self-worth because of a bully like Mr. Jeffries – but we will all encounter many throughout our lives. Some will think they have the right to determine the value others.

    I think it’s difficult to answer that question, both because the question and the answer are deeply personal and shifting with our own definitions and even mood. But I also think we’re the only ones who can determine if we are “good enough” – and do our best to live up to and exceed our internally-determined potential. We must remember to be as kind to ourselves as we would be to our best friend and children, while also encouraging ourselves in the same way.

    Just my two cents. 😉

    1. Excellent points! We are definitely the only ones who can determine if we’re good enough. Of course, that cuts both ways.

      I don’t think just one person will determine our self-worth (usually). But folks like Mr Jeffries definitely speak to attitudes of a larger group. I knew them in school. Most of us probably did. We probably won’t change their attitude but we can be the voices that speak louder and have a bigger, more loving, influence on those around us.

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