The gifts of imperfection
I've used this title before and it happens to be the title of one of my very favorite Brene Brown Books. But it fits too well to not use it again.
This morning I taught my eMOTION30 class to a group of women I adore. They are my sisters. I was up late last night planning every moment of this class and pouring it out from my heart, perfectly enough in the light of the full moon. I was so prepared and ready and excited. And then, the internet went out in the middle of class. And my music got picked up by another bluetooth speaker next door. And I watched myself unravel a bit inside, all the while keeping it together as best as I could, though I spoke to it and tried to take a dose of my own medicine in the meantime. Afterwards I was so disparaged. I was ready to quit completely or cut live classes all together and just film them moving forward even though that is antithetical to the connection I am seeking.
Thankfully, my girlfriends are amazing and the work that I have been doing all these years kicked in. They held me up in my moment of frustration. I turned to my oils and a very specific practice that I will share below. And here’s what happened: The more I nurtured myself through the discomfort, the more appreciation I had for it. It wasn’t that it went away fully, even now recalling the morning brings a bit of an internal sting. Instead, I had some major epiphanies about my response and how I wanted to move forward.
The first epiphany was that leaning into support both in the best and worst of times does not come easily to me. I had asked each one of the women in that class to show up to help me get this thing off the ground. To be a safe space for me to explore what’s possible. That in and of itself was uncomfortable for me as I am used to coming up with an idea, launching it and throwing it out into the world with very little input or presence from anyone else, by choice. Even in the positivity and excitement of a new idea I am always reluctant to invite people in. I hold fiercely to this idea that my self-sufficiency and independence matters. This leads me to my second epiphany:
My commitment to doing it on my own is harming my potential. I learned at a young age to be fiercely independent and self-sufficient. I also learned that it was ok to be different and in fact, craved to not run with the crowd. These sound like really good qualities in many ways. And they have served me well in certain facets of my life. They also generate a kind of loneliness and cut me off from the possibilities and expansion that comes from collaboration and community. I am just now at 37 years old understanding the power of communal existence and importance. But up until now, I have often shrugged it off because I didn’t want to “be” like everyone else and something about following the norm became a negative thing in my mind. It has taken me this long to invite people into my process, raw and real and imperfect. And so today when my process got real, the old stories of not being enough and failure started to roll because all of a sudden, I wasn't the only one witnessing it, never mind that it wasn't actually anything to do with me personally.
And here is the gift: that I am even able to articulate and type that to you right now. When I say that when I nurtured myself through that old story and gained appreciation and gratitude, this is why. Because we can only know what we are aware of. And now I know that a blindspot for me is not only asking for support and help, but wrapping myself up in the warmth of community, sisterhood, even and especially when things don’t go the way I wish them to. When I can’t “make perfect” happen.
The final epiphany is the simplest of all; asking myself the question “What is the next obvious thing that has to get done?” and doing that. These are the words of my teacher, another sister with whom I also had a call with shortly after this morning's events. Today it was buying an ethernet cable and adapter so I am not reliant upon wifi. I mean super simple and practical right? The fact that my brain wanted to walk down the well-worn pathway of old stories is not all that surprising. This is neuroscience 101, we do what we have always done until we consciously and actively change it. The epiphany of just answering a simple question that led me into the forward momentum of what I CAN do was what allowed me to take a deep breath and find even more gratitude for today’s learning.
I teach these tools of movement and stillness and daily ritual for emotional well-being. I hope to make clear to you through this sharing that what we are looking to do with these practices is give ourselves tools to move through the layers of healing we all carry around. I teach these tools not because I have somehow healed myself fully but because I am always in the active process. And each and every time a moment of seemingly imperfection happens, I see it has a great gift in my unlearning.
I also want to share two small rituals that helped me, in the event that you may need a similar tool:
May this help you and may you understand the gifts of your own imperfection and see the beauty of your Being Human, in all moments.
Share this with someone you love today who could use it and subscribe to stay updated for more daily practices, rituals and insights.
10/1/2020 11:04:58 pm
Lady. You are amazing. I am constantly blown away by your grace and intelligence.
Leave a Reply.
is a Mama, Wife, Yoga and Meditation Teacher, Coach, Writer and Activist. You can read more about her here.