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How to be enough?

Community Member

I've been facing my issues for 13 years. A lot of that time I was aware of my issues but didn't do much to fix them. In the past few years, I've made a lot of progress. I have a stable job with bosses and colleagues who love and treat me well. I've gotten better at socialising - still not fantastic and can get anxious, but not as much as before. The people in my life have nothing but good things to say about me.

The one thing that I have not had in the past 13 years is love, dating, romance. I haven't had it because for the most part, I haven't gone after it. It could be a cop-out for my avoidance, but I want a happy and healthy relationship and to be in one, you need to be happy and healthy yourself. So I've been a work in progress for a long time.

But I'm starting to think that for a while now I would have been enough for a nice woman, it's just me that I have not been enough for. I'm trying to be perfect, but it will never be enough. I'll fix all my superficial flaws - it won't be enough. I'll have friends tell me that I'm a great guy, attractive, sweet, sexy - they must be lying or just trying to be nice.

I don't even know what I'm doing anymore because I don't even know what it would be like to feel enough. 
How would you describe your feeling of enough? The feeling that lets you put yourself out there and gets people to love you in the way that I've been missing.

3 Replies 3

Hey there JSP, 

Thank you for your bravery and openness in sharing here, it’s a really good place to come to hear from others. We’re sorry to hear you've been going through a difficult time, unfortunately sometimes putting ourselves out there can lead us to feel self-concious or less than. We think sharing here is a great step towards feeling better and hopefully our community will have some words of wisdom.  

If you want to talk through what you’re feeling at any time, the Beyond Blue Support Line is here for you 24/7 on 1300 22 4636, or online here. It’s ok to reach out when you’re feeling anxious or upset, they can talk you through some ways to find a bit of calm, and then help you to figure out some options for further support. 

We’re sure we’ll hear from the lovely community soon, but in the meantime, here’s some strategies you might like to have a look at it. It sounds like you've put a lot of work into improving yourself and as you've mentioned you've made a lot of progree. Sometimes we forget our achievements or they get overshadowed by what we perceive as flaws. It can be helpful to learn how to stop this 'inner critic', we understand you might have been through some of these in the strategies in the past and it might feel like cold comfort right now, but they’re here in case they do pique your interest: 
Thanks again for sharing and congratulations on all the effort you've put in to get to this point. We’re always here to listen and offer support, and you never know how your story might help someone else. 

Kind regards, 

Sophie M 

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor



As a 53yo gal, it's taken me about 5 decades to finally recognise what it means for me to be enough. Maybe it's because I've had time to develop many different aspects of myself and have worked so hard on self understanding in so many different ways, something that's helped me manage my mental health over the years. Mind you, there are some aspects that I still want to develop, some that I've neglected over the years such as the adventurer in me, my highly creative aspect and a couple more facets). For me, if I imagine there are so many different parts to me that go toward making up who I am as a whole, it becomes about falling in love with those parts and, in turn, loving myself. Then I am enough. From what you say, it sounds like you've been developing parts of yourself in brilliant ways that give you a sense of pleasure and fulfillment. Takes a lot of work, hey.


I figure, if we bring the comedian in our self to life more, how can we not love that part of us? If we bring to life the adventurer, the creator, the carer, the sage, the philosopher, the researcher, the hard worker, the wonderer (of wonderful things) etc, how can we not love those parts of us? There is just so much to love about our self. Of course, there are parts of us that aren't so lovable but all that's a work in progress too. I think we come to life gradually, bit by bit. And when so many facets of us really start to come to life, there's the chance to not only discover that we're enough, we can also discover we are downright amazing. I imagine you've amazed yourself on occasions. I bet you've said at certain points in your life 'I can't believe I achieved that. I just can't believe it'.


I've found, for myself, the question can come down to 'What part/s of myself do I really need to develop at this point in my life?'. Some parts are developed out of curiosity, 'I wonder if I can bring the thrill seeker out in me'. Some parts are developed out of necessity, 'I need to bring the financial manager/saver out in me'. Some parts are developed out of desperation, 'I need to bring the researcher and analyst out in me, parts that are going to lead me to better understand myself and serve me as I manage depression or stress'. And then there are some parts that are developed for sheer fun and amusement. We're such multifaceted creatures. Might sound a bit flowery to say but with there being so many different facets to us, all coming to light, when you take a step back there's the realisation that we're kind of like a diamond in a way, with challenges having cut us and shaped us and certain practices having polished us. We are truly brilliant, the way we can appear, when we look at our self from the right angle or perspective. What facet of that diamond that is you would you like to cut and polish next? Perhaps the romantic in you or your sensual self. The choice is yours. You are more than enough, you're a gem in the making. 😊

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello JSP,


Thanks for your really open post. It was a very interesting and sad read, as it sounds like you've been really trying hard and are struggling to see the 'results' of all the work you've been putting into yourself. I'm a 32 year old male for context, and I think we are always a work in progress. As you say, there will be some other people who we may never be enough for, but hopefully we can get to the point where we say, "that's their loss, I'm good enough for me".


To your point, it's hard to aim for something that we don't know the shape or feeling of.


From your post, it sounds like you've been putting so much effort into self improvement because you had goals around your job and socialising. Maybe you've actually done enough active work on yourself for now, and it's time to explore a bit? 


It reminds me a little bit of when we have a hobby, say running, and we train really hard for a 10km fun run. People often lose motivation when they hit that goal, because they don't know what to do next. Do they aim for a faster 10km? Aim for 21km? a full marathon? It can be hard to work out what the goal is because they may have also forgotten what they liked about running in the first place, so don't know which goal makes most sense.


I could be way off base, but something in your post reminded me of that feeling of feeling a bit unsure about your place and where you are going. In my running anecdote, what I did was I just started running with no goal, except to find literally new routes that I liked. I did some trail running, I went to different suburbs, I tried cycling. Perhaps that could be something for you as well, to just see what in life you do enjoy. Perhaps those things you've never tried will give you that sense of feeling enough, or at least a direction.