Day 13 of The Vulnerability Challenge: What do I not accept about myself?
I just sent a WhatsApp message with a mistake in it. A WhatsApp message.
WhatsApp must be littered with roughly three hundred thousand mistakes a second but I had to check mine and cringe because while other people’s mistakes are a forgettable slip, mine will surely tarnish my reputation until the end of recorded history.
One of the things I find hardest to accept about myself is that I make mistakes.
I expect myself to be good at everything which is ironic because at exactly the same time I also think I’m completely mediocre and not particularly good at anything. It’s what the endlessly wise Brené Brown, would quickly diagnose as perfectionism, “the 20 ton shield” I keep thinking I’ve put down until I feel it crushing me again, a way of thinking:
I can hear its voice in my head right now about this post:
“It’s not very good, is it? Are you really going to post that? It’s not very interesting. Other people have much more interesting things they don’t accept about themselves. You should give up writing.”
This is not the cheerleading voice waving rainbow coloured pom poms trying to help me to strive for excellence. It’s the voice of shame pretending to be my friend. So I’ve made a decision.
I need to make more mistakes.
I need to make spelling mistakes because it means I’m writing. I need to say the wrong thing because it means I’m speaking. I need to get chocolate on my face and spinach in my teeth (although maybe not before a big meeting). I need to mess up more.
Creating beautiful/flawless/perfect things has its place. But so does making a mess… and making a mess is fun!
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