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How to Finally Get Over the Fear of Not Being Good Enough

No one has perfect self-esteem, although we would all love that. But don’t beat yourself up. Here’s how to get over the fear of not being good enough.

fear of not being good enough

We live in a world that is just toxic to all of our self-esteem. Our society tells us that we have to look a certain way, act a certain way, make a lot of money, and be wildly popular to feel good about ourselves. But guess what? That’s a bunch of crap.

If you want to get over the fear of not being good enough, it all starts with you. And what I mean by that is that it all starts in your head. You see, everything is subjective. And how you feel about yourself was all constructed in your mind based on how you THINK you measure up to the expectations of other people. It could be your parents, your religion, your peer group, or just the media.

How to get over the fear of not being good enough

Even though we don’t think of it this way, fear is usually just an illusion. It’s something that our mind has created that may actually be irrelevant. The fear of not being good enough is no different. [Read: Build your self-esteem – 35 funny things to tell yourself]

If you have created that fear, then you can also un-create it. Even if you were programmed to think that way by other people, you need to know that you still have the power to change it. So here are some tips for how to get over the fear of not being good enough.

#1 Try to understand why you feel that way. Okay, so where did this feeling of low self-worth come from? Just because you think you’re not worthy doesn’t mean it’s true. Did your parents tell you this? Did you get bullied as a child? Why do you feel this way?

Once you understand where the thoughts came from, then you can start to unravel why these negative images of yourself are false. But you have to start here.

#2 Seek help. Most people can’t do this alone. It takes a tremendous amount of self-reflection and emotional intelligence to be able to examine yourself and look at your thoughts objectively. Ideally, you should probably enlist the help of a trained therapist.

However, not everyone has that luxury for one reason or another. So, if you don’t, then at least ask a friend to help you. Our friends love us, so they will most likely be willing to help you love yourself more too. [Read: How self-respect affects you and the relationships you have]

#3 Discover your life purpose and passion. Sometimes people have the fear of not being good enough because they just haven’t found their life purpose – or even a passion that they can pursue. Trust me, you don’t have to be the next Oprah or President of the United States to make a difference in this world.

We all have our unique gifts and passions. So, it’s time to explore yours. Once you discover them, then you can focus on channeling them into either a career or a hobby. This will give you a lot of satisfaction about yourself. [Read: The need for purpose in life – 5 really big things it can do for you]

#4 Forgive yourself. We’ve all done things in the past that we regret. So, if you feel that way, you are not alone. But sometimes it feels like we’re alone. We look back and ask why the heck we did or said something. And we wish we could take it back. But we can’t.

All we can do is forgive ourselves. As Maya Angelou said, “When you know better, you do better.” So, you really have to forgive yourself. If you don’t forgive yourself, then you won’t love yourself. And if you don’t love yourself, then you can never get over the fear of not being good enough. [Read: Achieving self-acceptance – 10 little steps for one big change]

#5 Stop trying to be perfect. And I repeat… stop trying to be perfect! First of all, there is no such thing as perfection. It’s a myth. It simply doesn’t exist. What is perfect to me is not perfect to you. And what’s perfect to you is not perfect to the next person.

So, stop trying to achieve perfection, because you never will. You can’t achieve something that doesn’t exist. Instead, focus on excellence and passion. Do your best. Focus your passions.

#6 Stop comparing yourself to other people. It’s so easy to compare yourself others – we all do it. But this is only adding to your fear of not being good enough. From the outside, everyone looks like they have it all together. And if you factor into social media, well, people can create pretty much any persona they want. But that doesn’t mean it’s real.

So, stop comparing yourself. But if you do, compare yourself to people who are worse off than you. Not because you are cruel, but because it puts into perspective all that you have to be grateful for. Trust me – there are always a lot of people who are worse off than you. [Read: How to stop being jealous of someone else’ success]

#7 Focus on your strengths. When we have the fear of not being good enough, then we are only focusing on our weaknesses. But we all have strengths! Sit down and write down in a journal all of your good qualities. Are you a good writer? Good at computers? Can you sing really well? What do you do that is your special gift?

Once you know what that is, then focus on those. Ignore all the things that you are insecure about. I know, I know, easier said than done. But all it takes is some conscious effort to brush those negative thoughts aide. [Read: 18 ways to have high self-esteem and start winning at life]

#8 Visualize and do affirmations. This may sound cheesy to some people, but it really works. Numerous research studies have shown the power of visualization. In fact, Olympic and professional athletes use it all the time in order to reach their goals. So, take some time to visualize yourself and your life the way you want it to be.

If you’re not a visual person, then try some affirmations. Write down positive statements about yourself, and then repeat them over and over. Make this a habit. Do it every day, as often as you can. This will literally re-wire and re-program your brain, and eventually it will become your new thought pattern.

[Read: How to build self-confidence – 16 ways to realize you’re truly worth it]

You don’t have to live with the fear of not being good enough. Do you know why? Because you ARE good enough. You just need to make yourself believe it.

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Carol Morgan LP
Dr. Carol Morgan
Dr. Carol Morgan has a Ph.D. in communication and is a professor at Wright State University where she loves corrupting young minds. As a relationship and succes...