Not good enough?

I saw this little wooden box a few months ago, at a second-hand store. It looked just like a friend of mine’s dog so I bought it, feeling almost giggly at my purchase…couldn’t wait to give it to her. As the days passed, when I looked at it, I found myself thinking, “What if she doesn’t like it? What if she thinks it is kind of dumb and now doesn’t know what to do with it? What if it becomes a sort of burden because she won’t want to give it away, if she doesn’t like it, for fear when I visit, I won’t see it?” I put it away in the cupboard by my desk.

The other day, I took it out and put it on my desk. It is totally useless…or is it? At one time, it made me smile…until I started thinking that it wasn’t “good enough”. It reminded me so much of life…of the unique gifts that we all have and how sometimes we hide these for fear that they are “nothing”, not good enough, saying things to ourselves like, who would want “it” anyway?

I don’t know if my friend will like this little box or not. What I do know is that I love buying little gifts and giving them….it is a part of who I am and of what makes life feel full and rich to me. So, what do you and I have that we have been hiding? What talent, ability, perspective or personal quality that feels too unusual, or too insignificant, to be wanted by the world?

Maybe we should name today, April 5th, National Coming Out of the Cupboard Day…sing that song to someone, apply for the job that you really want, ask that guy out, bake that special dish and invite someone over to share it, smile at someone even if they have never smiled back, give that little box to your friend …


17 thoughts on “Not good enough?

  1. Another good post Mary – seems you always say something I’m feeling or need to hear! Thanks.

  2. yes, a great idea – maybe it’s the day – started out sunny here and then getting darker and darker and with tea I’m thinking what am I not showing, doing, cavorting in? I tell my mate how great she is, how much I appreciate some little things she does, and the big things too, like cleaning out the basement and the garage! then I think of a plan I have for a client, how she can have a better relationship – herself and her mate – and then I think, well, there you are, a plan for action. let’s have at it!
    thank you, Mary

  3. I cannot tell you how many times I have found the “perfect” gift for someone and talked myself out of it with all the “what ifs. Funny how we do these things to ourselves. Thanks again for sharing!

  4. I think the unexpected “just because I was thinking of you” presents are the ones that give the greatest delight, both to giver and receiver. No holiday campaign told you to buy it, doesn’t need an accompanying card because it’s “their” day – it’s a just because I like you present. Go for it Mary! We’ll be waiting to hear how your friend likes that adorable box. It’s whimsical, and who doesn’t need a bit more of whimsy in this life? Happy Just Because to all!

  5. Why is gift giving so difficult? I did not buy a similar type of gift two years ago. It was so cute, that it made me laugh out loud. I think I will take a trip back to that gift shop. Maybe it is still there. Happy April 5th!

  6. Mary — good post. For some reason the words, “smile and the whole world smiles with you,” popped into my head after I read it. I have lived in this current place for three years. It is a smiling place and a waving place too. I believe these gifts in total have made this area one of the friendliest I have lived in — and I have lived many places. The folks around here might have different philosophies than I but we do have one thing in common — we feel good when we give and receive a smile or a wave or both. — barbara

  7. So many times in my life I’ve let opportunities pass or left something new unlearned because I was afraid I wouldn’t be good enough. I’m so much harder on myself than I would ever be on anyone else. Now I realize that so much of the joy of a thing is getting better at it, seeing progress. And any gift from the heart is already perfect by the mere fact that is is given with love.

  8. This touched a nerve, instant unanticipated tears flowed. I hadn’t realized how deep the “not good enough” feeling still is.

    I too love to give and recieve the “this reminded me of you” gifts that aren’t attached to Hallmark ocassions. They are so much more meaningful than the “have to” ones and create happy memories and acknowledge what we find endearing and unique in each other.

  9. Gift giving to a friend without a holiday or birthday connected. That is good enough for me to appreciate your thoughtfulness.

  10. That “second guessing” of myself and my gifts, especially during the Christmas Season when there are so many gifts to give to so many people…has been torturous for me. I know that it is all my “Ego” thinking that I will make or break their Christmas/ Birthday/ Tuesday with MY gift. When I can allow the intuitive joy of getting & giving the gift, and LET GO of the receiver’s response, the act of gift giving makes me happy – even if the other person is not appreciative. My husband once said to me…”If they knew what you put yourself through, they wouldn’t want the gift”. I am getting better at this, but thanks for your complicated thinking… I am not alone!

  11. This adorable little box opened up a whole can of worms!
    I think when you shine a light on these ‘universal’ feelings of inadequacy and doubt, we all get to see how very much alike we are. It instills a new courage to follow a first instinct; take a chance that our gifts will be well received and heart-felt.
    It truly is “the thought that counts”!! Thanks Mary.

  12. Mary…YOU’RE the gift…to all of us. Wisdom and inspiration…you need to put a pretty bow on your head! :o) Kay

  13. Thank you, Mary, for this “confession” of something I’m sure a lot of us identify with. I’m still discovering those things that I have ignored, minimized, even denied that, deep in my heart, I would like to share. This Journey is such a process and sometimes something we read (like your story here) reminds us that there are things we need to give a little more attention lest we miss those opportunities to create something new, revealing what we have neglected or hidden, even from ourselves.

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