Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Feeling Small

Sarah Chana Radcliffe M. ED., C. PSYCH.

Whether you feel inadequate about something you can change (your parenting skills) or can’t change (your family background), here are tips and tools to conquer those terrible feelings of “I’m not good enough.”

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Think back to the last time you felt old, fat, or frumpy. Chances are, the feeling was triggered after you saw someone younger, skinnier, or more put-together than you. When we feel inadequate because we’re not pretty enough, smart enough, rich enough, popular enough, or even frum enough, it’s almost always because we just compared ourselves to someone else. Perhaps the most painful feelings of inferiority arise when we compare our children to other kids. “My son has a lot of learning issues. When my friends brag about how well their kids are doing in yeshivah, I want to hide under a rug. I never have any good news to report. I feel like a failure as a parent.” In some ways, not having “good enough” kids is even harder than not being “good enough” oneself. It carries the extra stigma of somehow having been a “not good enough” parent, even though the flaws and failings of one’s children do not automatically reflect deficient parenting. The cognitive cure for this type of inadequacy is, of course, to stop comparing ourselves to others (see sidebar for more). It helps to remember that every single one of us has a completely different job in This World and Hashem gave us exactly the right tools for the task at hand. So if we don’t have a certain tool (like wealth or beauty), it means we don’t need it. 

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Weekly Struggle
Shoshana Friedman Cover text: promise big and deliver what we promise
Only Through You
Rabbi Moshe Grylak A response to last week’s letter, “Waiting in Passaic”
Are You Making a Kiddush Hashem?
Yonoson Rosenblum In communal affairs, “one bad apple…” often applies
Chance of a Lifetime
Eytan Kobre I identify with the urge to shout, “No, don’t do it!”
Work / Life Solutions with Bunim Laskin
Moe Mernick "You only get every day once"
Seeking a Truly Meaningful Blessing
Dovid Zaidman We want to get married. Help us want to date
Shivah Meditations
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Equivalence between two such polar opposites is puzzling
Magnet Moment
Jacob L. Freedman Everyone’s fighting a battle we know nothing about
Secrets and Surprises
Riki Goldstein Top-secret suits Eli Gerstner just fine
Blasts of Warmth
Riki Goldstein Keeping the chuppah music upbeat in low temperatures
Behind the Scenes
Faigy Peritzman The intrinsic value of each mitzvah
Good Vision
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Good or bad, nice or not? What you see is what you get
Day of Peace
Mrs. Elana Moskowitz On Shabbos we celebrate peace within and without