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Overcoming A Sense of Inadequacy and Belief of Being Not Good Enough

People may struggle with the sense of inadequacy from time to time. They may compare themselves with siblings, friends, peers or colleagues. Quite frequently, the feeling of inadequacy is only brief and fades away to the background. However, there are times the sense of inadequacy lingers, leading to a feeling of being incompetent. When this happens, motivation decreases and hopelessness increases.


The core belief of being “not good enough” often develops early. It often comes from painful childhood experiences or memories that continue to linger in the present. Some of the influences that influence the onset of this negative core belief includes:

  • Childhood abuse or neglect

  • Frequently being accused or held responsible for the things you did not do

  • Being held to unrealistic standards

  • Being subjected to harsh punishment

  • Being negatively compared to peers, family members, friends, etc.

  • Being told that you will never succeed or achieve your dreams

  • Constant criticism by caregivers who are critical or trying to use reverse psychology

  • Being shamed, bullied or criticized harshly

  • Being subjected to micromanagement and not allowed to make decisions


Quite frequently, people who repeatedly experience criticism, shame and other adverse events feel restrained from moving forward and achieving their best. The sense of not being good enough is so overwhelming that they feel anxious and fearful. They also struggle with a sense of hopelessness and depression.


If you constantly feel not good enough, steps that you may take to reduce it include to stop comparing yourself unkindly with others and being encouraging to yourself instead of harsh and critical. It is also helpful to look at a setback as an area to improve instead of the end.


While changing of mindset and focusing on the positives is helpful to reduce the negative cognition of being not good enough, some people continue to struggle with inadequacy. That is a good time to then consider seeing a professional counsellor or a psychotherapist to process the challenges.


Restoring Peace Counselling & Consultancy offers counselling and psychotherapy services for individuals who struggle with a sense of not good enough, anxiety, depression and other mental health challenges. For more information, please visit www.restoringpeace.com.sg or WhatsApp us at +65 8889 1848.



Keywords: Singapore, mental health, private clinic, therapy services near me, therapist, counselling

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