I’ve read a lot of books out of necessity instead of pleasure, perhaps that is why I don’t often read anymore. Recently our family counselor gave my husband and I “The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are” by Brene Brown.
I am a bit of a perfectionist and so to an extent I am anxious about making mistakes and fearful that I won’t measure up. I have trouble with doing something simple and letting it be. It could be something as simple as writing an email; I’ll find myself writing, editing, re-reading and re-writing. This has served me well in academia as my papers have been well-written. Although, even when my graduate professors would return my papers with comments like “100 – This was excellent! I enjoyed reading your paper and learning about … I could not find anything wrong with this paper”, I still had trouble accepting that feedback and feeling satisfied.
This year, I made my new year’s resolution a bit broad, I aim to be a happier, healthier me. As part of this, I am reading and taking time to reflect on Brown’s words. In the Gifts of Imperfection, Brown discusses shame resilience, as well as courage, kindness, compassion, and connection. What I am learning to recognize and remember is that kindness and compassion towards the self is just as important as having these towards others. Furthermore, these are also important if we want to make the best connections with ourselves and each other. These are also key if we want to be and enjoy life in the moment.
With that being said, I am going to practice courage in starting a new knitting project, a Slouchy Beanie with a Visor. I am a new knitter and it will be the first hat that I have attempted, so I am a little nervous that it may not come out right. I am going to lean into that feeling though, and just go for it. All of my scarfs so far have come out lovely, so hopefully this project will too!