Life is always toughest for me in October and March. In October, reality is setting in for both students and teachers at school. The honeymoon has worn off. The summer has worn off, and, in October, there is tons of school year left.
In March, quite the opposite happens. Teachers and students can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Testing begins. Spring break and Mardi Gras break arouse hints of summer. Yet, we are not quite done. We are the living, breathing embodiment of the word almost. Everything is culminating at once.
For me personally, my husband’s birthday is two days before Valentines Day, which is two weeks before my daughter’s birthday, which is the day before the first track meet of outdoor season, which is the day before my daughter’s Mardi Gras parade (which, of course, requires a float), which is less than a week before my son’s birthday.
In between, there are math department meetings, summer job trainings, and sick children. Paperwork is due, and grades are due. Deadlines loom, and I am trying to keep my head above the water. I get rid of stuff. I get rid of tasks. I try to be present but busy is about all the calm I can muster. Right here is where self-doubt creeps in.
Perhaps they chose the wrong teacher for the job. Perhaps the chose the wrong trainer for the curriculum. Perhaps they chose the wrong head coach. Perhaps He can use someone else to put words to a computer screen. Perhaps I am not the mom they need or the wife he needs. I am not enough. I am just a girl, forced to grow up, who just wants to survive.
I overspent, and now I have more month leftover than money. My strength is low while my stress is high. My energy is low while my anxiety is high, and I wonder if perhaps I am not a perfect fit…for any of it…for all of it.
At this point, I would prefer to throw in the towel. I gave it everything I had, and I am coming up short. Every. Single. Time. I just want everyone to know that I am sorry. I am doing the best I can, and I am sorry I cannot do better. I tried. I did. I really, really tried…
And now I give up.
For anyone who ever gave up on themselves and found themselves staring at the same full plate the next morning,
For anyone who thinks life chose the wrong person for the task,
For anyone whose self-doubt caused them to give up,
BE ALL IN
Self-doubt is okay to admit for a brief moment in time. Everyone doubts her abilities at some point. Doubt just means you have pushed yourself harder than you have ever pushed yourself before. You are doing more than you have ever done before. You are outside of your comfort zone, and you are right where you are supposed to be. Let it all out – your doubt, fear, and discouragement. Scream it out. Cry it out. Pray it out.
Then, once it is out, be all in. Your boss needs you to be all in. Your athletes need you to be all in. Your co-workers and students need you to be all in. Your children and your husband need you to be all in.
Your purpose needs you to be all in.
YOU ARE NOT ALONE
You are not enough. You need help. Accept when life extends you an olive branch. Your journey requires other people. Your success requires a team. I need my husband to get the kids ready in the morning, to lay out the uniforms at night, and to make sure we all eat dinner. I need my coaching staff to run practice while I wade through the paperwork. I need my inclusion teacher to give certain students specialized attention. Each person in your corner complements you. Your tribe adds to your overall value. They give you just enough. They refuse to accept or acknowledge your self-doubt. They cheer you on. They lift you up. They step in when you step out. They pick up where you leave off. They see your shortcomings and smile as they embrace your flawed imperfection. Your brokenness gives them light. Your brokenness is how the light gets in.
THE WORLD NEEDS WHAT YOU HAVE TO OFFER.
Self-doubt wants you to dwell you what you lack. Self-doubt wants you to believe that life has made a mistake – that God has somehow made a mistake. Self-doubt wants you to give up and walk away.
Self-doubt can take a seat. Choose to dwell instead on what you have to give. Life makes no mistakes. God makes no mistakes. When you consider giving up, take a moment to reconsider. Your purpose is bigger than you and your doubts. You have something that no else else has to offer. Your job needs you. Your co-workers need you. You athletes, students, children and husband need you. You are the only one who can do it. You are custom made for right now.
Should your self-doubt lead you to give up, know that the only one who can answer your calling is you. Whatever it is that you are avoiding, that keeps you awake at night, will let you rest only briefly. It will be waiting for you to get back up. It can only operate with you and within you.
Growth is calling. Next level living is calling. Promotion is calling. Your blessing is calling. Purpose is calling.
Need you to answer.
What are some ways you do away with self-doubt?
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