Have you ever thrown your phone across the room while scrolling social media?
I was lying on my couch a couple of days ago, feeling anxious and out of sorts, not sure what to do with myself. And I don’t know about you, but when I’m in that kind of jittery, can’t-focus-on-anything mood, I tend to reach for my phone.
So I’m scrolling Insta, and there’s a pic of someone on the beach, with the caption “living my best life!” My mood shifts from “out-of-sorts” to “rankled.”
As my eyeballs and thumb continue their practiced scrolling (when and why did I get so good at this mind-numbing activity?), another picture shows up that just gets. under. my. skin.
The image is of a cabinet full of holistic remedies – fish oil, vitamins, supplements, etc. The caption starts with, “You can tell a lot about a person by what they have in their medicine cabinet.”
“Rankled” quickly turns into “infuriated.” I shout to my empty living room “I’m so sick of the personal growth industry!”
Cue my phone arcing across the room.
I grab my journal and start writing furiously. The words that come out are:
STOP TELLING US WE’RE NOT GOOD ENOUGH.
Today, with a little distance, I can see that an old familiar story was playing out: I was feeling not good enough, so my mind looked for evidence to prove its hypothesis. It’s an ego tale as old as time.
But at the same time: I really am sick of (much of) the personal growth industry. It’s becoming more and more clear to me that it largely stems from the same roots as the diet and beauty industries:
- Create insecurity in people by subtly telling us we’re not ok as we are.
- Offer your product as THE solution that will make our dreams come true.
The “living my best life” post that implies that if there’s not room in your budget or time in your schedule for vacations, you’re doing something wrong. The “you can tell a lot about someone by…” post that hints at how you’re a good, worthy person if you use holistic health remedies as a way to “unlock your highest self” – but if you don’t, you’re missing the boat.
Here’s the two-part irony: 1) an earlier version of me could have easily posted either of these posts. And I totally would have believed that I was inspiring/helping people. 2) I love beach vacations and holistic health remedies.
But I’ve had it up to HERE with personal-growth messages that imply we’re not good enough. And I certainly don’t want to create spaces for others from that energy.
Here’s what I know:
I am a work in progress. So are you.
But that doesn’t mean we need to change A THING about ourselves.
What if, instead of telling ourselves that we need to heal our relationships (with food, body, money, sexuality, our partners, our moms), like, yesterday…we could give ourselves permission to be in the midst of the struggle?
What if, instead of believing that we need to figure out the key to:
- Master our habits
- Live our purpose
- Step into our power
- Find our truth
- Manifest abundance
…we could simply trust that who we are, and what our life looks like, right now, is enough?
It’s radical, I know. And perhaps your mind is arguing: “But if I accept myself as I am, I will never amount to anything” or “This sounds like a convenient excuse to be complacent and lazy.”
To that, my response is a quote from Carl Rogers, a founding father in psychotherapy research:
“The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.”
This principle is at the core of all my coaching. I guide people towards self-acceptance because it works. When we stop the constant self-shaming and accept ourselves unconditionally, we remove the chains that keep us stuck in self-harming behaviors.
On that note: I’m thrilled to announce a new round of Food Freedom Book Club!
This time around, we’re reading Radical Acceptance: Embracing Your Life with the Heart of a Buddha, by Dr. Tara Brach. Here’s a teaser from the back of the book:
“Believing that something is wrong with us is a deep and tenacious suffering. This suffering emerges in crippling self-judgments and conflicts in our relationships, in additions and perfectionism, in loneliness and overwork – all the forces that keep our lives constricted and unfulfilled. Radical Acceptance offers a path to freedom, including the day-to-day practical guidance developed over Dr. Brach’s twenty years of work with therapy clients and Buddhist students. Step by step, she shows how we can stop being at war with ourselves and begin to live fully every precious moment of our lives.”
Are you ready to ditch not-good-enough and trade self-improvement for self-acceptance? Click here for info and to sign up!