We’ve been taught from a young age to hide away or fix away our flaws. But in the Japanese art of Kintsugi, broken pottery is mended with gold. It stands out on purpose. The art celebrates the cracks and the eventualities that led to those cracks. The pot is seen as something more precious than before. The pot is seen as something that was never truly broken. Just like in Kintsugi, there is beauty in our imperfections. There are stories in our scars. There is strength born out of our flaws. Let’s stop hiding them away. We are stronger and more beautiful for having been broken.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. You’re doing the best you can. It’s easy to hold onto our mistakes. But that’s the past. Learn to let go and move forward. Learn to look ahead. Learn to forgive yourself. None of us need to be superhuman to have a super life.
(Image: The Red Fairy Project)
Have courage. It doesn’t take perfection or genius to get further in life. It takes guts. We shouldn’t be afraid of failing but afraid of not trying at all. We shouldn’t be afraid of stepping out of our comfort zone but afraid of trapping ourselves in it. We shouldn’t be afraid of our flaws but afraid of not realising their magic. We need to keep trying, keep going, to get further. We won’t ever be perfect. We won’t all be geniuses. But no matter what you think, we can all be brave. And that’s what will get us the furthest.
We all have weaknesses. We all have flaws. We all have vulnerabilities. And so we should. We should be raw. We should be authentic. We should be imperfect. It’s precisely our imperfections that promise living rather than existing. Imperfections are the place where we grow, where we dream, and where we act. Imperfections are where beauty blossoms, character builds, and life happens. Embrace your imperfections. Let people see your imperfections. Know that your imperfections are what make life perfect.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? We are all meant to shine.
We’re taught to sabotage ourselves repeatedly through a particular mindset. We constantly focus on the flaws of our body and our intellect and everything in between. We constantly tell ourselves that we’re not enough. We constantly brush off our talents and achievements. Why? We’ve been listening to that for too long. We’ve forgotten the power hidden within. We’ve forgotten that we are all unique and wonderful, that we all have more to offer than we thought possible, and that we’re allowed to let our light shine. Let’s stop hiding ourselves away. We deserve more than darkness. The world depends on us to keep lighting it up. Don’t leave it in darkness. Don’t leave yourself in darkness.
A lot hinges on our relationships and interactions with people around us: our energy, motivation, direction, choices, perspectives. That’s why it’s important we build solid, positive, fruitful and invigorating relationships around us. And cut our ties to those who take away from our life:
- The overlookers – we shouldn’t ever be made to feel worthless by those close to us. We shouldn’t ever be consistently ignored, excluded and belittled. We shouldn’t be constantly taken for granted. Although our self-worth should foremost come from within ourselves, relationships with others should nonetheless make us feel valued and appreciated.
- The nay-sayers – those around us shouldn’t distract us from where we want to go, with doubts, negativity, or self-importance. Our loved ones should encourage and push us forward, no matter how much they do not understand or agree with our choices. No matter how much they wish they could do the same too. Those close to us should want us to thrive.
- The game-changers – people who try to mould us into someone else or who won’t accept us for who we are will eventually be suffocating. And we shouldn’t have to change our very core principles and qualities for other people. We all have flaws and we should be able to embrace them, not escape them. We should be around people who love us for who we are.
What could we do differently? It’s a question we should perhaps ask ourselves more often. We shouldn’t constantly focus on the problems, the flaws and the mistakes, but sometimes there are simple solutions that lie with us. It’s not that we have to do different things, but do things differently. Look through a different lens. Fail fast and learn quickly. Repeat the cycle. We are the students, the innovators, the fixers, the examples, the legacies. When we adapt, we thrive and the world thrives too.
When you look in the mirror, who do you see? Because the only one staring back is you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what others think of you, it’s about what you think of yourself. I hope you see beauty illuminated by imperfections. I hope you see a full heart in spite of your mistakes. Because you deserve to see yourself for who you really are. I hope you love yourself for who you are. And if that’s too hard at the moment, then I hope you at least try to love yourself more.
The concept of confidence can be misleading. Many of us confuse confidence with popularity. Many of us confuse confidence with ideal beauty. Many of us confuse confidence with arrogance. Although confidence can be associated with these, it isn’t reserved for the chosen few. It is rooted in humility, acceptance and love for who you are, no matter how quirky and flawed that is. Confidence can be quiet but mighty. Be your most authentic self, because that’s all we should ever be and aspire to be: ourselves.
Our weaknesses are not a life-sentence. We can always practise. We can always learn. We can always adapt. We can always embrace. We can master our weaknesses. We might lack confidence, patience, determination, optimism, discipline, or another asset. But that doesn’t mean we cannot master them. Whether that’s to hone that new skill or just to accept our weakness and adjust. Because all that really matters is that we don’t let them limit us, but that we push ourselves forward despite them.