I often feel inadequate.
Inadequate amongst the people I spend time with. Inadequate amongst the writers and poets I compare myself to. Inadequate amongst the likes of artists, environmentalists and business people who have either created something magical, or an empire, by the time they turned 22. Inadequate amongst the Instagram famous whose workouts are far more intense and regular than I could possibly make the time for mine to be. Inadequate based on my looks, my art, my words, my love and my achievements.
I’m not suggesting that I have created or achieved nothing in the past 21 years. I am 3 semesters off finishing my social work degree; I have an assistant in nursing certificate; I have written a novel; I have been an ambassador for a camp for kids born with various heart conditions and am currently an online ambassador for that same organisation; I have spoken in front of medical professionals who have experienced beyond my years and yet treated by them as if I am an equal; I have survived many a heart operation and have created words and stories and art that I am beyond proud of.
So no, I am not suggesting that I am merely an inadequate. I’m just simply suggesting that I am a master at comparison and thus, often feel inadequate within the presence of other greatness.
Unfortunately, this is not an uncommon feeling.
So many of us feel inadequate and it’s not a nice feeling. For me personally it leaves me feeling sad, numb, angry and constantly on the verge of tears and it’s actually a feeling I’ve been re-introduced to over the past few days, unfortunately. I’m not sure why but sometimes a sadness, an emptiness, a feeling of being totally inadequate because I don’t have *insert object/relationship status here*.
That, is so unfair toward me and my own mental wellbeing; just like it’s so unfair toward you and your mental wellbeing to feel so deeply inadequate that you aren’t sure if it’s going to just leave you alone or swallow you whole.
Thus, I’ve compiled a list of things to do when you have that feeling swirling around inside of you.
Unfollow social media accounts that make you feel crappy!
Seriously. Just do it. It doesn’t matter if that person is consciously or subconsciously making you feel crap, the point is, you are feeling that way and that’s not fun!
So, just unfollow them.
You’ll feel so much better when you do.
FOLLOW social media accounts that value things like art, activism, human rights, or simply just admire and focus on the inside rather than aesthetics!
My personal favourite instagram accounts that I follow that all tend to leave me loving myself, my art and my passions, include:
Although of course there are SO many more incredible, powerful, artistic, passionate and hardworking women who you can follow to get inspired/feeling MORE powerful, these are just a few.
Avoid excessive exercise!
When I’m feeling inadequate or just plain, sad, I tend to exercise for all the wrong reasons and therefore end up lying on the floor, sweating and in tears because I feel like I didn’t go hard enough, or for long enough. That’s not healthy!
Instead of trying to do an intense workout of any kind, maybe stretch, do a light round of yoga or simply go enjoy a long, slow walk surrounded by nature.
Get your feelings down on paper. Or on a word document. Whatever way you feel more comfortable, so long as you’re getting your emotions, your frustrations, your worries and doubts all out.
Being able to get out those feelings is so important and works absolute wonders on what’s going on in your mind.
Focus on your work/art/passion
Whether you are a musician, artist, aspiring doctor or lawyer, or anything in between, focus on that gift!
Remind yourself that you are incredibly talented, that you have a remarkable gift whether that be the ability to create poems from scrambled words you see in the deli section; the ability to create a song from a sound you heard in the streets; the love of researching beyond what Med school has told you that you need to know; or wanting to fight for human rights in a court room-all of those things, and talents and gifts beyond these I’ve mentioned, are beautiful.
And although so many people may have these gifts, the way you work on them, work through them and come to an end product is unique to you and that’s cool.
Focus on that. Focus on you.
What do you do when you’re feeling inadequate? Let me know in the comments below or come start a conversation with me on my instagram page!