Repeat after me: I am enough

For those of you who haven’t been following along at home (or who just find your own lives more interesting than mine – weirdos), I have been ticking a few goals off my to-do list lately. I ran my first half marathon – a goal since I suffered PND in 2011. Then, just to prove that wasn’t a fluke, I ran another one a month later. I have also recently started my own business and have just generally been buzzing around like a blue-arsed fly ticking things off my Big Life List.

Because YOLO (yeah, she did).

And achieving goals is awesome.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4Kx-jqDgRo

When I finished my second half marathon last week, I realised I needed another goal. Something to work towards. To borrow my friend Danielle’s terminology, I wanted to avoid the ‘suck back’. That is, I was terrified if I didn’t make another goal, I would stop running altogether and just sit on the couch eating chip sandwiches washed down with caramel milkshakes and lard. That’s what led me back on down to my group training studio, and a very clever and gorgeous woman called Nicola.

I went in without thinking things through – without knowing what my next goal should be. I thought we’d talk it over, and come out with something that would excite me and leave me fresh and enthusiastic for my Next Big Thing.

“Do you want to get buff and build some big muscles?” asks Nicola.

“Nah,” says me.

“Triathlons?” asks Nicola.

I screw up my nose. Whoever designed bike seats did not have my rump in mind, or was a sadistic fucker.

We go around like this for a bit, and then Nicola says, “You know what I think? I think you don’t need a goal. What you need is to recognise is that you are enough just as you are.”

There was silence in the room. A tumbleweek may have rolled through as we blinked at each other.

I can’t tell you how much this unnerved me. What does that even mean? What am I supposed to do with that information? We talked about it for a bit longer, and I realised Nicola totally has my number. I love/hate when that happens.

I mean, I’m generally a pretty happy person, and I am very lucky to live the life I live, but it’s true that I do feel like I need to fill every waking moment in my days with something useful; something with a purpose; something that tells the world that I’m totally worth having around.

Nicola looked at me square in the eyes before I walked out and said, “You are enough.”

So of course I walked outside and burst into tears.

Holy shit, maybe I am. Maybe I need to stop chasing goals and trying to justify my existence to the world – and to myself.

So my new goal – and I thoroughly appreciate the irony of calling it that – is to accept myself as I am, enjoy every day, and stop trying so hard. Sure, I can still work towards things – that’s healthy and that’s how shit gets done, but I also need to stop, breathe, and accept myself as I am.

Because I am enough.

It makes me squirm in my chair just typing it but pushing through discomfort is the way to personal growth, right? That, and tattoos.

Are you enough? Is this a life lesson you’ve got down?

And by the way, if you live on the southside of Brisbane and you want to experience the wonder of Nicola, check out Soulfit. You won’t be sorry.

Written By

Carolyn is the editorial director of Champagne Cartel and a freelance writer. In her spare time she is a long-distance runner, peanut butter enthusiast, and single mum to three incredible humans.

41 Comments

  • FFS. Did you write this framed as you, but mean it about me? You can be honest.

    You are so full of awesome (like, bursting at the seams because buff kind of awesome), you can’t possibly mean this to be about you?!!

    Sweet lady – you are not just enough. You are the cat’s whiskers and the cherry on top as well.
    If you ever need reminding – just get a tattoo – and I’ll call x

    • Busted! Clearly I know I’m enough – you, on the other hand… 😉

      Thank you, my lovely, I think it might be another one of those things that goes on inside most of us to varying degrees. And we haven’t chatted in ages – must remedy that soon, I think. That way I can remind you that you’re awesome as well. xx

  • I’m just copying what Champagne Mia said – cause it’s all true and much better than my “you iz da bomb” comment I was going to write. And can I also add that you, Mia, are also so enough it’s not funny. (When are our children getting married?)

    But just on the irony of setting the new goal of no new goals, I remember seeing a counsellor once who asked me if I realised I was a perfectionist. “Really?” I said. “How do I fix that?” (for the record, I’m still working on it – trying to become an imperfect perfectionist!).

  • Oh bless I nearly burst into tears for you then too. What a fantastic goal to have lovely… I’m WAY underachieving right now so my goal is to get my shit together and then I’ll be able to reach my goal. That is enough for me. Can’t wait to hug you in TWO WEEKS! x

  • LOVE THIS!!!!!! WOW! You are amazing and you are enough! Just as you are. What a cool experience though hey? I love it when you have these weirdarse interactions with people that leave your head spinning. Someone out there in the mother-fuckin-universe loves you my friend, you’ve been given a good hug from afar I reckon!! Mmmmmmm spiritual huggles.

  • Umm no, I definitely don’t have this lesson down. To be honest, I’d never thought about it before. What a novel idea. I am enough … I guess I’m a little like you always working to a goal and pushing myself harder and faster and to do more, more, more, kick butt, repeat, kick butt. It’s exhausting. You’ve given me food for thought now. Thanks 🙂 x

  • Oh wow, that would have had me balling in the doorway. Three very powerful words. It occurs to me right now, that I’ve never said those words to my kids (even though they are completely enough exactly as they are) and never to myself. I’m going to make that my plan for the weekend. Because they and I are also enough. Thankyou xxx

  • You summed me up completely with this sentence:

    “I need to fill every waking moment in my days with something useful; something with a purpose; something that tells the world that I’m totally worth having around.”

    That I am enough is a new belief of mine. I have believed that I am not enough since I was twelve. It is such a liberating and scarily thought, that just me, everything I am, is enough.

    I hope that you’ll get to this understanding about yourself too. xS

  • Am definitely not there yet. But am trying.
    I am impressed with the 2 half marathons in a month!! Running one of those has been a goal of mine for over a year now..still not there yet either..One day!

    • Thanks Zita – just keep going and you’ll get there! I never thought I could do it but then I realised if I just kept putting one foot in front of the other, eventually I would get there. The second one was much less of an issue because I knew I already had the base fitness to do it. What I didn’t take into account is that my body was still fatigued by the first run for about two weeks so the lead up to the second wasn’t great and I struggled to finish. All a learning experience, for sure! xx

  • This is such a great post. It’s taken me a while to realise I can do anything, but I can’t do everything. However, I’m one of those people who likes to have a dream, goal, purpose or whatever. It just keeps me focused. I totally get the thing about running, it’s a bit addictive. I’ve done 4 half marathons since my cancer diagnosis and am about to go and run my fifth in Disneyland. When I get my Mickey Mouse medal, I’ll definitely be enough!

    • Wow Sammie – go you! I agree it’s great to have a purpose – I guess it’s just about balancing that with the ability to enjoy some peace as well. I love that sentence about realising you can do anything but not everything. Nailed it.

      I hope the cancer has nicked off for you – and that you have a blast running Disneyland – what an experience! xx

  • Nice one, Carolyn. Sounds like you’re setting yourself up for something awesome! I see and hear so many people trying to follow so many life coaches’ ideals about how to live a prescribed life that isn’t necessarily how they want to live, it’s great to hear you’re following your own drumbeat… by the way, is it me or are there a lot more life coaches around these days?

    Anyway, keep up that chin up. You’re doing the right thing!

    Jxx

    • Thanks Jim! Ironically/hilariously enough, I have a life coach as well. I work with her to help me focus on achieving specific career objectives, and I think that I let that ambition spill over into all areas of my life instead of keeping some relaxation time as well. Balance is the key, they tell us. Sounds so simple…

  • Such wonderful words thank you! I have a gorgeous sister going through a rough patch and sometimes I think she is trying to achieve too much. She is enough! She is sooo enough. I shall now go and have this conversation with her. Thank you xox

  • This is something I’m working on believing, and I find it’s hard work. Almost like I’ve been programmed to think the exact opposite.
    Maybe we should just keep reminding each other?

  • I love this post and this quote… reading through all these comments I can see you are definately enough.
    Thanks for making me take the time to stop….. and remember that I am enough too x
    Lovely to have found you and look forward to following along.

  • Love this! After a somewhat mediocre morning (week) of just not feeling it… this was just fantastic to read – thank you! Automatic pick me up. I am glad to have stumbled upon your blog and look forward to my inbox receiving some pre subscribed champagne love (will be a nice change from bills and wedding spam)! Congrats on the massive miles you have accomplished – cardio and life wise! x

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