Actor, director, philanthropist and the person changing how the world understands masculinity, Justin Baldoni, recently asked his fans on social media to share stories about times in their lives they’ve felt like they weren’t “enough.”
His aim? To stop shame from thriving in silence and to help us all understand that our struggles and insecurities make us human, which is the premise of his soon-to-be released book, “Man Enough: Undefining My Masculinity.”
As Justin explains in his Facebook message, “together as a community, I would love for us to bring our stories to light knowing that vulnerability invites connection – to others and ourselves – and that connection reminds us that we belong, that we are enough.”
His post received hundreds of answers from people all over the world sharing stories of heartbreak, pregnancy loss, surviving toxic relationships, domestic violence and so much more. And there was one response from a high school teacher, who described feeling exhausted, constantly anxious and “not enough,” not only as an educator, but as a woman.
Justin replied to her comment so beautifully and with so much empathy – and there may just be a lesson in here for us all to remind ourselves of his words, anytime we too, feel we’re not enough.
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“I feel the pain and ache in your words and I wish I could know the exact thing that you need to hear to know that you are enough,” Justin begins.
“I wish I could tell you that teachers are literally some of the most important people in our lives and have you believe in your impact on your student’s lives. I wish I could say the perfect thing for you to know that you don’t need to foster men or give them a home —that the only person you ever need to be a safe, welcoming home for is yourself,” he continues.
“You deserve the love and care that you so freely give to others.”
Read that bit again.
You deserve the love and care that you so freely give to others.
Justin then explains how he works through his own insecurities by repeating daily affirmations.
“You can set an alarm on your phone or in your classroom and each time it goes off, take one minute, put one hand on your heart and one on your stomach, take a deep breath and say ‘I am enough’ or ‘I am MORE than enough.'”
“I hope you can find ways to keep reminding yourself of the truth until you believe it. Because it is true — you are more than enough and you deserve to rest in that.”
Justin’s book Man Enough: Undefining My Masculinity is due out April 27. You can pre-order your copy HERE.
(Feature Image Credit: Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock.com)