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Done Enough

I’m not much of a sports fan, but you can occasionally find me on a cold Sunday afternoon watching Crewe Alex Women FC with a few friends. The most recent match I attended saw us playing a team who were high above us in the league, who had beaten us quite spectacularly earlier in the season. Despite these facts our team came out and played a great game, earning them a draw. In amongst the cries of ‘Come on Crewe’ and ‘Well done’ I noticed one of my friends often chiming in with ‘You’ve done enough’, particularly when a play hadn’t gone quite to plan for our team but had succeeded in disrupting the others teams attempt to score. It is a phrase that has stayed with me since and got me thinking about how we can use it in other areas of our lives.

It can be so easy to get caught up on the ideal outcomes of things, or an end goal that we can easily become frustrated with ourselves for not attaining them. However, when this happens, we do not always take into consideration the external (or internal) forces which may be impacting on our ability to do them. Since attending the game I have found myself often asking the question ‘Have I done enough?’ when faced with what I could frame as a failure to do something. This has allowed me to focus on what I have done and celebrate that, rather than be angry at what hasn’t happened.

I may not have deep cleaned the kitchen, but I have wiped down the sides and sorted the washing up so there’s space to cook.

I haven’t managed to make a healthy meal from scratch, but I have eaten something with some nutritional value and given my body the energy it needs.

I haven’t dropped off the unwanted things at the clothes bank, but I did sort things into bags and put them in the car so there’s space in my wardrobe.

I didn’t go for a long walk, but I did manage 20 minutes in the park enjoying nature which still improves my mood.

While in each of these situations I didn’t get to the ideal place, I did make progress along the way, and doing something is better than nothing. It has even helped me to overcome some of the difficulties I can have with task initiation, because I don’t have to be perfect, I just have to ‘do enough’ to get me started. In some cases starting out with the idea of ‘I’ll just do enough’ has led to me getting to the place I wanted to, just through a slightly different route. (It’s how I managed to get this blog out of my head in the end.)

I’d love to hear some examples of when you have ‘Done Enough’ and how it helps.

Picture from a women's football match shows two teams one in red and white and one in yellow and green at the centre line. In the background are spectators and the managers. Text reads 'When have you done enough?'

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