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April 21, 2021

How Vulnerability can Soothe the Sting of Perfectionism.


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I had a thought this morning as the birds chirped and I sipped my tea …

Maybe vulnerability can cure perfectionism, or at least soothe the sting.

What do I mean?

Vulnerability does the exact thing that perfectionism refuses to do—it acknowledges our humanness.

It exposes our tender spots and bares our wounds; you know, the things we struggle to keep hidden at all costs . In reality, these so-called imperfections are often quite beautiful. Magical. Endearing. Wise.

As the curtains of the “holding-it-all together-so-we-don’t-f*cking-fall-apart-show” slide down, we are naked. We are seen, touched, and known.

So maybe vulnerability is not just this really difficult and scary thing, but a healing balm for our curious souls.

Vulnerability nourishes our freedom to make mistakes and learn from them.

It emboldens our right to tell the real stories, not just the ones that make us look good. It encourages our ability to fail, without being a failure.

It gives us room to just be who we freakin’ are, even when that isn’t so pretty at the moment. Even if it’s cracked in places and our flaws hang out at the sleeves.

It grants us space to claim our truths, speak our minds, and have opinions.

It reminds us that we don’t have to hide. Or know everything. Or do everything right.

Life is not a tightrope, but an adventure. An exploration.

Vulnerability whispers to us between the smog of suffocating thoughts, like the familiar tune of “I’m not good enough,” that maybe it doesn’t matter.

Maybe we don’t actually care to compare ourselves to some impossible ideal or live up to some sparkly societally-imposed standard that’s not even real.

Maybe we can let our imperfect, messy, lovely, well-intentioned selves come out to play, every damn day.

Maybe the thing we’ve been searching for is not enlightenment, but the simple, gem-like wonder of our humanity—which is natural and tender and awkward in moments. Yet, it shines. It shines like nothing else.

Maybe we don’t have to try so hard.

Maybe we can laugh, cry, feel, f*ck up sometimes, learn, and just be.

Maybe that is truly living.


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