This is a follow-up to our last article, How to Overcome the Fear of Inadequacy: Part 1.
So, you’ve been practicing the steps that we talked about in the last article. You’ve been developing your self-awareness, compassionately witnessing your emotions, and working to change your inner stories. Here are three more steps you can take to free yourself of feelings of inadequacy, once and for all.
Be Patient with Yourself
While you’re practicing all of the steps above, be patient with yourself. Changing habits takes time. Here’s a typical progression of what happens when you’re practicing awareness of your habits, emotions, and thoughts:
• First, you’re aware that you’ve engaged in an old habit way after that fact.
• Then, you notice that you’re engaging in an old habit in the moment.
• You begin to notice that you’re about to engage in an old habit, but you don’t stop yourself.
• You notice that the old habit is arising and you stop yourself.
• Finally, the old habit simply no longer arises, and a new behavior that serves you better is now your new habit.
Just as pro-athletes need to practice and practice and practice to get to where they want to be, so too, do we need to practice compassionately witnessing our emotions and shining light on our stories.
Part of being patient is also watching out for the Spiritual Judge, the part of us who tells us that we should just be able to rise above our inadequacies. It’s the part that says that you shouldn’t freeze up and shouldn’t get embarrassed. It’s important to understand that this part is just another flavor of judgment and that this judgment doesn’t help us to let go of our fear of inadequacy. Although it may be uncomfortable, there’s nothing wrong with you for feeling the way you feel.
I often quote my teacher, Ana Forrest, who says, “Never waste a good trigger.” Whenever you feel triggered, use it as an opportunity to practice self-awareness, compassionately witness how you feel, and shine a light on the old stories.
Know that Everyone Feels This Way Sometimes
Have you ever found yourself thinking that everyone else has it figured out? That you’re alone with your fear of being inadequate? It’s very common for our inner Judge to tell us that we’re the only ones. However, the truth is that most people struggle with the fear of inadequacy.
Self-compassion researcher, Kristin Neff, writes that one of the three pillars of self-compassion is knowing that we’re not alone. So, the next time you find yourself freezing up, remind yourself that everyone feels this way sometimes.
Plant Yourself in an Environment of Support
While it’s true that other people’s judgment can’t make you feel nervous or defensive or ashamed if no part of you believes that their judgment is correct, it’s also true that you deserve to be with people who accept and support you. While it is necessary to do all of the steps I’ve mentioned already—practicing self-awareness, witnessing emotion, changing stories—it is also important to surround yourself with people who treat you well.
Please know that I’m sending you love and support on your journey to overcome the fear of inadequacy and embody your full authentic self. If you are looking for more support developing the confidence you need to pursue your dreams, I invite you to check out our confidence coaching services. Wishing you all the best!