Wednesday, September 29, 2010


That word has come to have such a negative connotation, hasn't it?

Pretty much since I can remember, I have worked SO hard to be perfect.

Don't rock the boat.

Don't upset the apple cart.

I think you get where I'm going, right?

It is EXHAUSTING. The constant wondering if you are saying the right things, making the right moves, looking attractive enough etc.

All too often I find myself apologizing for being me.

Someone compliments me and instead of saying "thank you!" and leaving it at that, I have to add a disclaimer to the end. Kind of like the micro-machine guy talking at the end of a car advertisement, but I say it at a normal pace and leave the conversation with this negative cloud hanging over both my head and the compliment giver.

For example (this actually happened), someone told me a few weeks ago that I have beautiful eyes. She might have actually used the word stunning (or maybe I'm making that part up). Did I just say "thank you!" and move on? Nooo. I had to add something like "I just wish I didn't have to hide them behind these glasses" or something to that effect.

Now that I think about it, isn't that kind of like turning down the compliment? How rude of me! (See...this striving for perfection thing can actually backfire on us!)

Sometimes I try so hard to be humble that I can't even accept praise.

And becoming a mother has only magnified this quest for perfection x 1,000,000. Seriously - how all-consuming is momma guilt? Some days it covers me like a cold, wet blanket.

So I've made a decision friends. Enough with this perfection stuff. Because you know what? It is impossible to attain! And you want to know another thing I've recently realized?

Imperfection can be so beautiful.

Being authentic is delightful.

Figuring out who you are and only doing things that add to that identity is freeing.


Don't those words just put a big smile on your face?

I know I still have a lot of work to do in order to embrace my imperfections (and those of others), so I've decided to give this book a whirl...

The Gifts of Imperfection by L. M. S. W., Brene, Brown, Brene, 9781592858491

It sounds like just what I need to keep this imperfection train going.

Care to join me? You can purchase it for $9.98 with free shipping here. (I'm a sucker for free shipping.)

If you decide to join me in reading it, let me know and we can support each other in our less than perfect-ness. :)


CZ said...

Oh my....sounds just like me...def need to read that book!

{katrina} said...

I just ordered it! I need to read that book. I've been really struggling with myself lately and it sounds like it will be a great help!

Thanks for sharing, Mandy!

{katrina} said...

I just ordered it! I need to read that book...I've been really struggling with myself as of late!

Thanks for sharing, Mandy!

Mandy said...

That's great Kristin - we'll have to compare notes!

Lydia said...

Thanks for your comment on my (in)courage post! I also struggle with perfectionism but I really hope to stop. Holding myself to a standard that only God can attain doesn't do me or those around me any favors. Being Authentically myself, authentically flawed, authentically in need of grace is so much more freeing. Blessings to you, my friend!

Kristin said...

I'm a champ at self effacing nonsense. It's so bad!

Joi said...

This is very interesting, M! I think I'm in the same boat as you. It's part of being a people pleaser which I bet you are.

Mandy said...

Yep Joi - people pleaser here!

DianeTaylor said...

Mandy - I could have written this post. WOW. I was just stunned reading it. I kept saying "this is you, Di" over and over again. I recently found out that I made a big mistake on my 2008 taxes, and now owe a ton of money to the IRS. I've been beating myself up over it. I will definitely order this book and maybe it will help me deal with this latest crisis of my life. Thanks for sharing with us :) I just changed my signature on my work emails to this quote:

"Life is like sailing. You can use the wind to go in any direction"

Have a great day!

Mandy said...

Hi Diane! I'm so glad that my words spoke to you in some way. It is strange when I write these personal posts because I feel like God is speaking through me more than they are my own words, you know? Let me know if you buy the book and we can chat about it!



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