December 16, 2016
Being imperfect is human. In fact, the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi teaches that all things are impermanent, imperfect, and incomplete. What’s psychologically more important than perfection is is the drive toward betterment and the journey toward wholeness, and integration.
We are all different; with various strengths and attributes. This is part of being human and contributes to our uniqueness as individuals. Remembering this can help you work towards building your self-esteem as you strive to create a life filled with happiness and greater contentment.
Additionally, perfectionism can be a coping mechanism; often having deeper roots such as: internalized critical voices from childhood, over-functioning, and rigidity.
Perfection is difficult to achieve, because nature is always changing.
A well-known tale about wabi-sabi tells the story of a gardener who created an apparently perfect landscape. Before finishing, he shook a nearby cherry tree to cause pedals to fall and disrupt the illusion of the “perfect” order.
What appears to be perfect in one moment can be changed by circumstance or unexpected events. To focus on your goals, you should look forward; your “perfect” exists at some elusive point down the road.
Comparing yourself to others may sometimes prove inspiring, especially when you can learn of another person’s accomplishments and feel a sense of empowerment. But, it’s all too common to feel like your own life doesn’t measure up. It’s easy to forget to give yourself credit for your own successes and positive contributions to the lives of others.
There are many paths to success, being “the best” is only one. You may be better served by embracing creative problem solving, building your confidence in failing, and cultivating your resolve. Remember that you are a unique individual. You have a different path and comparing yourself to someone else might not always give you the answers that you are looking for.
Practice compassion, both for others and for yourself, as everyone is on their own journey to happiness.
Wabi-sabi is a philosophy you can use in your daily life to provide yourself with support and encouragement. Embrace the idea that the world and your life are always changing. Each moment is simply another opportunity to offer what makes you special and unique to those around you.
Talking to a therapist provides an opportunity to express concerns about your life and help put you on the path towards what you want. A therapist is there to listen and provide insight for your situation, providing you an opportunity to take another step toward your own personal goals.