People think that they don’t measure up.  They aren’t meeting the goals that determine whether they are a success or a failure, that define their self-worth, that make for a “happy life” and so something must be wrong with them. Many times they can number those wrong things in great detail.  They spew out reams of examples and explanations and discussion points. Then they ask how they can fix the situation, resolve the conflict, improve themselves once again some more so they can meet these goals.

Not always, but often my answer is to look at the stick they are measuring themselves by.  This is a confusing answer because to them the measuring stick isn’t a stick at all but physics. It’s gravity. It JUST IS!!! (It helps if you read that with the great announcer voice of doom.)  I keep pointing them back to looking at the stick.  Because rarely is anything about their situation physics. Yes, there a consequences to action or inaction in the situation.  The situation they are in, their current life, exists.  No doubt about it.  That’s separate from the question of whether they measure up and to measure up you first must have a unit of measure that you are using, and that’s the stick being wielded.

It is my experience that an overwhelming number of people are using the wrong stick to measure themselves by.  It’s not even in the ball part.  Like trying to use a ruler to measure their height.  They are at least 5′ and the rulers only has a max of 18″ so they can never get an accurate measurement no matter how hard they try.  The stick itself is defeating them because it’s not meant to be used in this manner. Or trying to use a ruler to measure around someone’s head.  How do you measure the circumference of something with a stick that is unbending.  (All math geeks can zippit with their equations and all the biology geeks can rest assured I know that the top of the head can be removed so we can measure across but such an enterprise would render the need to measure it moot because of the whole trauma and death outcome.)

Looking at the stick you’re not measuring up to can be one of the biggest “aha” moments of a lifetime.  Was it handed down to you by your family? Does it belong to someone else and yet they have made you believe you need to be measured by it?  Is it something cultural that you are trying to make relevant to you when it isn’t? So here’s a thought. If you aren’t broken or flawed, if you aren’t failing to measure up but instead are measuring the wrong thing with an inappropriate stick, what stick should you be using?  You get to choose, you know. 🙂 By using the right stick you might find you not only measure up but you have exceeded expectations.