Could you imagine if you went to Ikea with a friend, purchased a dresser, collected the box, brought it home and upon opening the box your friend yells “It’s broken?!” I assume you would be looking at your friend with confusion (or questioning how much they drank with lunch). How could they expect that the dresser would already be put together? Did they not realize the box is smaller than the display in the store? Did they not know Ikea furniture usually needs to be assembled?
We have this idea in our mind that we are supposed to be perfect and put together. Like we are not supposed to make any mistakes and that we are broken if we do not feel 100% happy and perfect all of the time. We are hurting ourselves by saying we are broken. It is demeaning and is not offering us any good. If anything, we use it as an excuse to stay in our comfort zone. You are not broken. You were never put together to begin with and not only is that OK it is an exciting and wonderful thing. Out of our unfavorable qualities we find room for improvement. In improvement we find happiness and our place in this world.
Back to the silly friend: Imagine asking them to help you put the dresser together and them refusing and saying the dresser is broken. You plead with them. You try to explain, it is not broken it just needs to be assembled. They are headstrong and say the dresser is broken and it would be best to find other broken furniture to add to your collection. What!?
Sometimes we will have a voice in our mind (triggered by anxiety, fear or laziness) that will say things similar to what the silly friend would say. We make a mistake and we try to forgive ourselves and move forward but the silly friend’s limited thoughts influence us and keeps us from moving forward. Whenever you find yourself defaulting to thinking you are broken or to not trying to improve yourself because you think it is an impossible task remember how unrealistic it would be to assume that an Ikea dresser would already be assembled. Remember that you are an imperfect human being and your flaws are what makes you, you. Remember that you are a work in progress and that is OK.
In closing it is important to understand that unlike the dresser you will never be completely put together. No human being ever has been or ever will be. Life is a continual journey in which we are learning and bettering ourselves. All you can do is work to better yourself and be the best person you can be. You will make mistakes. You will have bad days. That is all part of the process. You will forget and get off track. The important thing is to get yourself back on track when you can. As I write these words, I realize I needed this reminder as well.