Have you ever found yourself blubbering throughout the day…Bemoaning your circumstances? Feeling that life isn’t fair? Wishing you were so much closer to your definition of success?
Well, I have. And that is why I am writing this post today. Currently I sit in the aftermath of a “woe is me” emotional binge, as papers, notebooks, cups, pens, toys, pictures, and other random objects slide about on my “desk” (a fold out table that works marvelously) as I type this blog. I just came to a re-ocurring realization. Sometimes it comes through the subtle reminder of a beloved friend, or flashes on the horizon like a giant billboard:
LIFE AIN’T PERFECT AND NEITHER ARE YOU!!!
I am thinking of taking my one tube of Sephora lipstick and writing that on my bathroom mirror in mauve so I have a glaring reminder every day. Before you think this blog is just my way of publicly self deprecating, let me explain. If you have compulsive habits that are derailing your life, chances are you are a bit of an idealist.
NOTHING, I repeat…NOTHING, derails us like our own pet ideals. Idealistic notions of appearance, status, emotions, relationships, finances, possessions, health, comfort and convenience can lead to lifelong attempts to escape the rat race created by such expectations.
Conversely, our lives seem to take on more stable overtones emotionally and behaviorally, when we admit our imperfections, and the imperfections that come with our circumstances. When we do not wallow in despair over them, or try to make as if they do not exist. We begin overcoming the urges to numb, cope, and escape by changing our relationship with the miseries of life. We can cultivate appreciation and acceptance versus angst and avoidance.
If you live your life focused on your own pet ideals, or the pet ideals of others, you have the recipe for magnifying the inherent misery of living.
To maintain the integrity of what I am saying I must acknowledge that misery is coming whether or not we have idealistic notions, so your pet ideals aren’t creating the inherent misery that come with living. In my opinion, they simply add to the inherent misery of life as we clutch at them desperately as if they are life itself.
(PAUSE HERE FOR REGULAR LIFE INTERRUPTION)…
…..At this moment I am smiling from ear to ear. Life just managed to illustrate, as if to prove my point on cue, that “Life ain’t perfect and neither are you!!!”
Let’s just say that I had to pause in writing this blog to accompany my little one to the bathroom. The end result involved fecal matter, tons of baby wipes, scrubbing my arms vigorously. Ultimately my child ended up in the bathtub, and I was forced to change my oh so comfy sweater into a generic t-shirt and a hoodie that would have fit me when I was wearing a size 2 in junior high.
Aaah, life. Thank you for that blessed reminder:)
My child is perfectly happy, however, and I hear her playing without a care in the world (at this moment she is literally sounding like a pteradactyl in the bathtub– most likely the pterodactyl is eating her drenched Barbies, but back to the topic at hand….). I think children have mastered living in the moment if we only allow them…
Where was I? oh! Life with all of its imperfections, which of course trickle down to me and every known human being on the face of planet earth. If you are wearing similar shoes today keep reading for a little inspiration for imperfect people with imperfect lives..
For the Imperfect Person reading this today who struggles with compulsive behavior…
Maybe it is time to recognize that you “aint perfect” and life “aint” going to be either. This isn’t self deprecation. Say it with RELIEF. You don’t have to be perfect, your life doesn’t have to be. What freedom..You aren’t everything you think you should be-
And that’s okay!!!
Maybe it is time to accept not only the hardships and things you don’t like in your life, including the things you don’t like about yourself.
Once you learn to accept, you can start to celebrate who you are and what you have done that is worthwhile versus always focusing on what you haven’t done, or what your life isn’t vs. what it truly is.
Constantly striving for an unattainable ideal, avoiding pain or discomfort at all cost eventually will catch up with you. Eventually it will lead to you trying to escape your own life, instead of staying present in it and setting your intention to live each moment fully.
Two Questions to Ask Yourself Every Day When You Wake Up
- What ideals do I have that are fueling my unhappiness?
- What values lead me to a happier, albeit imperfect life?
Once again, I give up the idea that I should feel happy, be on top of my game, have everything I want, be smart, organized, skilled, AND at the same time manage to look great and impress everyone around me….
Doesn’t that sound exhausting? If you haven’t tried it, I hope you will take my word for it, and take it off your bucket list.
Once again, I choose to trade the ideals of perfection and comfort for the power of the moment, no matter what it brings.
You don’t have to be perfect all the time. In fact? You don’t get to be. You don’t have to feel happy all of the time. In fact you don’t get to be. You get to Live this moment, right now, with all of its imperfections, facing the pain and the joy, and the disappointment and the triumphs, all in one breath. What can be better than that?
You GET to be YOU. In all your perfect imperfection. You get to do your own life and breathe and laugh and cope and move! I hope you will take the time today to challenge your unrealistic ideals and just focus on what you truly want out of life.
What does truly living a fulfilled life mean given the fact that you are a real person with real struggles, triumphs, problems, and emotions?
If you are struggling today, take consolation in the fact that you don’t have to do away with the struggle to be fulfilled or to experience happiness frequently. All it takes is a shift in the moment from the ideal to truly observing and absorbing reality.
“Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word happy would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness. It is far better take things as they come along with patience and equanimity.” Carl Jung