When I dig myself into an Instagram rabbit hole of muscular men, I still sometimes feel that I am not good enough. Not having arms that break my sleeves, abs to grate cheddar on, or the chest to break coconuts with.

All of this despite:

Putting years of work into realigning my values away from how I look and towards how healthy, energetic and strong I feel.

Blocking my social media feeds and unfollowing people and accounts whose content makes me feel inadequate.

Eventhough achieving the perfect body doesn’t fit into my values. I am simply not interested in putting in the work or the discipline to get or stay there. I rather prioritise other parts of my life.

And still, I sometimes find myself in these holes, yearning for the perfect body.

When I feel inadequate about how I look, I have a short dialogue with myself to climb out of the hole:

My emotional brain: “I wish I’d have arms like that.”

My logical brain: “Does the way my arms look impact my goal of being healthy and the best possible dad, husband and creative person I can be?”

My emotional brain: “Fuck. off. Why can’t you just let me dwell on this?”

My logical brain: “Because it’s pointless and doesn’t align with what matters to me.”

My emotional brain: “Ah, you’re right. Having big arms makes zero difference in me being the person I want to be.”

My logical brain: “There you go. Let’s go watch Rick Beato on YouTube.”

My emotional brain: “I love Rick! What’s for lunch anyways?”

As much as we try to curate our environment to support our values, we can’t control everything. Having a dialogue ready when emotions take over helps us overcome these feelings of inadequacy.