Being perfect isn’t worth it

09 July 2019 | Columns

Thin. Fat. Big. Small. Tall. Short. Pretty. Ugly. Useless. Loser. Hero. Hated. Loved.

The power and impact of just one word. One word can make or break a person. One label assigned to someone can define them. As society we have attached certain meanings to words and we use these words to create an impact, whether this impact is positive or negative. Without even thinking twice, we judge a person based on what we see. What you see becomes the defining factor of a person. We make jokes and we say we are just kidding. At some point in time we started to feel that using the excuse of just joking justifies what we say. We forget that our words can create scars that might never heal. We forget that our words are powerful beyond measure.

Those imperfections and insecurities we have are buried and kept hidden out of fear that someone might use them against us. Those slightly bigger feet, crooked nose, funny laugh, weight issues, low self-esteem and depression are regarded as our own dirty little secrets. We try to keep them hidden, but anyone who has ever had a secret knows it is almost impossible to keep it. It starts eating away at you and the pressure keeps on building. We would go to any lengths possible to strive to meet those standards. To be more popular, we are willing to sacrifice a piece of ourselves and rather stay quiet than voice our opinions. We adapt and change our mannerisms to copy those around us, just in order to fit in. To be prettier and thinner we exercise more, we eat less and we become so focused on our appearance that we lose ourselves in this striving towards perfection.

People would rather suffer in silence than speak about their issues, because these issues need to stay buried as deep as possible. We judge others based on their imperfections, but we are blind to our own. I’ll be the first to say that I am most definitely not perfect. I have serious road rage, I love eating way too much, I trust way too easily and I place a ridiculous amount of pressure on myself. But I love my imperfections, because they are a part of what makes me unique. They set me apart. We need to make a serious mind-shift from our idea of perfection, because let’s be real. Flawless does not exist and striving towards this diluted idea of perfection causes more harm than good.

The change starts with how you see yourself. Your perception of you is what matters, not the yearning we have of acceptance from others. Self-love and inner-happiness are infectious. Your courage and bravery to embrace your differences are what makes you human. Your bravery will inspire someone else to do the same. This is definitely not an easy task, and surely easier said than done, but it is not impossible. Start with giving yourself some credit and live to make the moments you have count. You are wonderfully made and it is your responsibility to stay true to yourself and your heart.

I would much rather be an original than a copy.