I passed my driving test at first attempt when I was 18 years old.
And didn't sit on a driver's seat again for the next 10 years.
The thought of driving a car made me feel sick with worry and anxiety. I was overwhelmed by all the actions that needed to be completed simultaneously. Clutch, accelerator, indicator, look left, right and back, use the side mirrors, watch pedestrians, traffic and stick to speed limits.
Everybody I knew could drive. They got in the car, turned the key and off they went. Naturally, without a second thought. It was easy for them.
So, why was it so hard for me? What was wrong with me that I just couldn't figure it out? It was apparent that everybody else could!
For years, I beat myself up, punished myself for being such a loser. The all-consuming shame about my inadequate, pathetic Being undermined my self-worth and fuelled my harsh inner critic. I swore at myself and tried to force myself to drive.
But my real failure wasn’t that fact that I couldn’t drive. The true issue was that everybody else could.Making me feel incapable, useless and inferior compared to them. I felt like the only failure in a world of successes.
Driving is not my talent. So what? I was doing my best.
Even when I did nothing at all, when I was paralysed, intimidated and stuck. I did my best with the knowledge and awareness I had available at the time.
No shame in that either!
Life is about learning, growing, evolving. What’s the point of cursing yourself for what you can't do, what you should be able to do and where you should be in your life? Failure is never a reason to feel ashamed of yourself. Only an opportunity to learn.
In a year from now you will make different decisions, discover something new that will change your perspective on life, acquire new skills, succeed at something you fail now.
I conquered driving eventually. Bought myself a car, sat in it without turning the key for weeks, started slowly with short distances and built up from there.
I still get nervous if I face a long-distance drive or need to go somewhere I’ve never been before. But I drive.
Yes, it took me years longer to learn it compared to most other people. But I was never a failure. Because I did my very best.
And the same applies to you. Here and now, you are doing your best. And your best will always be enough. No matter how it compares to other people's best.
Because this is what you have to give right now. This is you.
And you are enough.
Dr Berni Sewell, PhD is a health scientist, energy healer and self-worth blogger. She is on a mission to make you feel good about yourself, no matter what. Download her free guide Instant self-worth: an easy 4-step solution to heal your self-worth in under 5 minutes a day” and start to boost your confidence today.