Diamond in the Rough

“I, myself, am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions”. – Augusten Burroughs

Raise your hand if you agree with the idea that “We’re all our own worst critics”.

Everyone’s hand up? Yes? I thought so.

It seems to be part of human nature that we all give more weight to our flaws, slip-ups and inadequacies than our good choices and successes. It’s not an entirely bad thing; we do need our brains to tell us right from wrong so that we learn the correct lessons in life. The issue, however, is that the mechanism rarely stops there and too often flows into destructive self-criticism.

“Hey”, your brain whispers as you lie awake in bed at night, “Remember that totally awkward remark you made the other day? Other people don’t say that kind of stuff. Your social skills are the literal worst. In fact, YOU are the literal worst”.

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Between the Cracks

Before that, we were just looking at ideas of each other, like looking at your window shade but never seeing inside. But once the vessel cracks, the light can get in. The light can get out.”
― John Green

The Japanese have some really lovely concepts, and one of my favorites (it doesn’t really translate in Western culture) is wabi-sabi, which teaches that there is beauty in imperfection, and that we should place a high value on authenticity.

The idea of wabi-sabi began in the Zen Buddhism tea ceremony, where the most prized bowls were handmade, and thereby unevenly shaped, with flawed glaze and cracked surfaces. These imperfections made them unique, and therefore precious.

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