Growing up I guess I always had this idea that everyone else had their life together and I was just a little behind. I thought that I was an outcast and that while everyone was living a life of ease, I was quietly and silently trying to work out my problems on my own.
I mean, you cant just TELL someone that you are terrible at math, or your parents fight all the time, or you have only been eating 400 calories a day for the last 6 months. You cannot just share that you are worried about the future or you feel like maybe you don’t have any friends that ACTUALLY like you.
It would be social suicide to show people who we really are… Right? Or maybe not?
I think that MAYBE just MAYBE, being authentic and vulnerable is incredibly brave and could be the potential solution to some of our problems as women.
I am now 26 years old and I have done a few things in life that I am proud of and a few more that I’m not so proud of. I have let people down and I have made mistakes, I have broken promises and I have fallen short. Through it all, I have come to the conclusion that I am not perfect, I will never be perfect, and in fact, I am now very glad that perfection is NOT the high point on my resume.
It seems to me that whether we choose to admit it or not, the majority of our anxiety, insecurity and all around self loathing are rooted in this false idea that everyone else is better than us, and we have to just be BETTER in order to keep up. Thankfully, this ideology of comparison will fail us every single time. Not only because it steals from us our ability to appreciate the uniqueness in which we were created, but it also dismisses the fact that each and every one of us are walking though something tough. When we get down to the bottom of it, no one has life all figured out, and no one has lived a life free from hardship.
I think we would be amazed to find that not only are we NOT outcasts in our feelings of doubt, but we are actually part of the majority. We have become part of the statistic without meaning to, but never the less, here we are!
That being said, I want to challenge all of us to come to terms with a few things. First off, lets drop the act. There is no need to play pretend and put on the face of false perfection when we know it is not real. Let’s come into agreement that no matter how great our body looks or what a fabulous hair day we are having, or how cute our boyfriend is, these things are not what define us or make us better humans.
Second, it would be best for all of us if we created a culture as women, where we actually felt safe telling our best friends that we are walking through a hard season, or that we need support or that we just want to eat a stinking cookie without prefacing it with “oh I shouldn’t be eating this.”
I genuinely believe that giving each other permission to be authentic is the best gift we can give. But in order to give that permission, we have to be willing to step into that space for ourselves. Perfection is not inspiring nor is it safe. It is intimidating and fragile. What deepens friendships and inspires the multitudes is a woman who is willing to stand boldly and say “I don’t have it all together,” “I sometimes feel doubtful or insecure,” and “I actually value character more than the size of my jeans.”
My desire for all of us would be that we could align with this way of thinking and that we would build friendships that are real and raw and true and supportive and kind. When we step into authenticity for ourselves and allow others to do the same, I think we will see freedom; A freedom that allows us to be rooted in a deeper identity. An Identity that cannot be so easily shaken!
Love you all!