Enough. It’s a funny word, especially the more you say it or write it. After working on this post for a while, I’m tempted to just spell it the way it sounds: enuff. But that’s the English language for you—definitely not WYSIWIG. Anyway, funky spelling aside, let’s ponder this word enough.
Perhaps your first thought is of how you use it with your kids—accompanied by an exclamation point and a slightly higher pitched, stress-full voice. What do you mean when you say it? You’re fed up, right? Because little Sally and somewhat less little Joey have been chasing each other around the house, screaming at the top of their lungs. Thirty seconds of it, and you smiled, quietly amused. One minute of it, and you sighed, shaking your head. Two full minutes of it, and you felt your muscles tighten, your chest constrict, and you let loose with one forceful word: Enough!
Their antics have disturbed your concentration as you were trying to work, or perhaps they interrupted what was “supposed to be” your quiet time. (We can talk further about supposed to be another time—definitely a topic worth pursuing.) So you may associate the word enough with feelings of frustration. Totally understandable. However, I’d like to discuss enough from another perspective.
What happens when you’re working on something? Let’s say you’re weeding your flower beds or painting the house or creating a presentation for your boss. You work diligently for a time, and then at some point, you think or say, “That’s good enough.” What do you do then? You stop. You’re done. You’re satisfied to accept it as is and move on.
There’s a sense of peace with enough—when you commit to it, when there are no perfectionist after-murmurings of “but I really should touch up around the windows again” or “just one more revision.” When you believe it’s enough, you’re calm. You feel free and easy—about whatever you apply it to. So what would happen if you applied the concept of enough to yourself, to whatever is important to you? What would happen if you said these things—and meant them?
I’m good enough.
I’m pretty enough.
I’m thin enough.
I’m rich enough.
I’m strong enough.
I’m secure enough.
I’m smart enough.
I’m happy enough.
No longer are you struggling to make something different than it is right now—because everything is sufficient as is for this particular moment. If you can stop the struggle in your mind regarding what is true right now (and you can), then you can approach your relationships, your job, everything in your life from a place of peace and clarity.
For example, if you believe it would be healthy for you to lose a few pounds, then you can go about making changes that will help you do that. But no longer are you beating yourself up for not already being thinner at this moment. Because at this moment, you are thin enough to survive and take the next step.
You have the ability to make changes in your life, every minute of every day. At the same time, every minute of every day, you are enough.