Self-Care Challenge (Day 60): Defining “Enough”

A white piggy bank

How much is enough? Have you ever really asked yourself that question? What exactly does it look like?

Most of us spend year after year toiling away at some form of employment. We do it to pay our bills, to do fun things, and to keep our families healthy.

But how many of us can say for sure when we’ve earned enough, achieved enough, or accumulated enough? Many of us pursue promotions, raises and recognition without ever knowing what the end point is. Where is the finish line? And when does it become enough?

As Lao Tzu wisely said, “He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough.”

I’m not suggesting that we stop pursuing our personal goals–enough is not synonymous with apathy. I’m suggesting that we invest time exploring our own definition of enough so that we can make adjustments when necessary to experience more joy. Isn’t that what we’re seeking after all?

One of the best examples of defining enough relates to our financial health. We can see the value of budgeting and we understand the need to balance earning with spending. This practice prompts us to ask ourselves insightful questions: How much do I need to pay my bills? How much will I need to send my children through college? How much will I need for retirement? Having clear targets when it comes to our finances can have a huge payoff.

And it can do the same for other areas of our health.

As a self-care exercise, I spent some time exploring my enough. I asked myself some hard questions about what I really, really, really needed to be happy. If I had to leave my home in 24 hours what would I take with me? If I lived in a home that was less than 500 square feet, what would I want in it? How much quiet time do I require to fully recharge my batteries? How much sleep is enough? How much physical activity is enough?

Defining our enough is about understanding the connection between our needs and wants. Some call it contentment; others call it fulfillment. However you choose to label it, wouldn’t it be great to know when you’ve acquired it so you can celebrate it?

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