“There is no perfection, only beautiful versions of brokenness.”Shannon L Alder
I am without a doubt, my worst critic. I have high standards and expect near perfection of myself. It is not because I think I am nearly perfect. Believe me! I am not. It is because I think I need to be better in so many areas of my life. Always. I am never good enough. Sound familiar? Why is that?
Truly, I no longer lack confidence. I am not insecure. I love myself and I think I am amazing and deserving of all things good. I am not egotistical nor am I arrogant. I am just happy with where I am in my life and I am proud of how I got here. I am proud because this was not an easy place to get to. It required hard work. Really. Hard. Work.
For 24 years I was made to feel like I was not good enough. Let me give you an example of why. For most of my adult life I have been up and down with my weight but have always been interested in improving my health and nutrition habits. I remember one particular kick I was on with healthy eating and wanting to get my weight down. I had a goal to lose 12 lbs and I was half-way to that goal. I was feeling so good about myself. We were going out to a hockey game that night and stopping for pizza before the game. I was going to give myself a night off and enjoy that pizza to the fullest! I started talking about how good I was feeling and that I had only 6 lbs to go. He got out his phone, googled a height and weight chart and kindly informed me that even if I lost another 6 lbs I would still be overweight.
I was crushed.
To understand this story better, know that I was still a healthy weight at this time. I was only a size 8. And knowing what I do now about health and wellness, height and weight charts should be thrown into the garbage. And people who say things like that to you, well… ditto.
So is it any wonder that I regress from time to time into the ‘I am not good enough’ mood? 24 years of hearing comments like this do incredible damage to your self image. You cannot reverse this damage in a year. Or 2. Or even 5. It will always be there. But you can make those moments smaller. More and more insignificant. Insignificant. They do not have to define you. They should not define you. They no longer define me.
I still feel I need to be better at everything. Almost everything. I accept that I will never be able to win the Indy 500 or perform brain surgery. I am okay with that. And I remind myself regularly that I can have a bad hair day. And I can lose a squash game to my friend Tammy. (Over. And over.) And that’s okay. I don’t have to be good at everything. I do not have to look perfect. Be perfect. Neither do you. Love your flaws. Love your imperfections. Have goals and put in the work but don’t try to be perfect. Just try to be better today than you were yesterday.
I am not perfect. I am flawed. And I am amazing.
And I am better today than I was yesterday.