Utne Blogs > The Sweet Pursuit

The Sweet Pursuit

Former Associate editor Margret Aldrich on the hunt for happiness, community, and how humans thrive

Are You a Self-Improvement Junkie?

 by Julie Hanus

Tags: health and wellness, spirituality and faith, self-improvement, expectations, self-kindness, collaborative projects, Notes on the Written World, I Am Enough Collaborative, Tracey Clark, Julie Hanus,

a woman standing in yellow stringsBefore yesterday, I never would have thought to apply the phrase self-improvement junkie to myself. But as I was reading about the I Am Enough Collaborative on the blog Notes on the Written World, I couldn’t avoid swiveling in my chair and staring down the prodigious stack of your-life-but-better books that I’ve got stashed in my cube.

I Am Enough is the newly born brainchild of Tracey Clark, a photographer and writer who has two motherhood journals published with Chronicle Books. It’s a response to her realization that she’d worn herself out “living the hustle to become better,” always striving for improvement, never feeling she was good enough. So far she has been updating weekly on Tuesdays (“maintaining feasible expectations for myself . . . is one of my recent acts of self-kindness,” she writes) and seems to be quickly lining up guest bloggers and storytellers. As she explains:

I have been a self-improvement junkie for most of my life; vigilant about getting to the bottom of my “issues”, digging deep to better understand myself, reading every book written to inspire personal growth, incessantly working on becoming a better person, etc, etc.  Although I had let go of trying to be “perfect” I was still striving to be better. Always better. Never quite enough.

. . . I have realized that I am not alone; that being enough as we are right now, today, as is, is hard for most women to really acknowledge and yet, it’s the key to living our best lives. . . . I can only hope that by sharing images and stories of worthiness and self-kindness that we can each embrace our own enoughness.

Source: Notes on the Written World, I Am Enough Collaborative 

Image by Michael (mx5tx), licensed under Creative Commons.