Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Be Kind to Yourself

As I've mentioned before, a while ago I started reading zenhabits. Basically, it's a blog about self-improvement, and believe me, I have a lot of things to improve - don't we all?

Some of the things that are touched upon in this blog are simple living, de-cluttering, exercise and health, time management, creativity, and generally making the most out of life by doing the things that bring you happiness (yeah, sounds very new-agey, but it's all presented in a very practical way). I could spend (and have spent) hours going through the various sections of this blog, always finding new things that I could improve about myself, from flossing to exercise to taking the time to do the things I love, like writing. The blog is such a great resource when it comes to simplifying your life and improving it, and yourself.

Then, I found a post titled Quashing the Self-Improvement Urge, and linked to it, another; you're already perfect. Here are some excerpts from the first post:

One of the driving forces of my life for many years was the need to improve myself. It’s one of the driving forces for people who read my work as well.

It’s an incredibly pervasive urge: we are always trying to improve, and if we’re not, that’s something we should improve.
So what’s the problem? You could say it’s great that people are constantly trying to improve themselves, but where does it end? When is anyone ever content with who they are? We are taught that we are not good enough yet, that we must improve, and so … we always feel a little inadequate.
We are never adequate, never perfect, never self-confident, never good enough, never comfortable with ourselves, never satisfied, never there, never content.
What if instead, we learned to be happy with ourselves?

There's then a link to the second post:

A powerful realization that has helped me is simply this: You’re already good enough, you already have more than enough, and you’re already perfect.
The thing I’ve learned, and it’s not some new truth but an old one that took me much too long to learn, is that if you learn to be content with who you are and where you are in life, it changes everything.
We don’t need to improve our lives. We don’t need to improve ourselves, because we’re already perfect.

Once you accept this, it frees you.

You’re now free to do things, not because you want to be better, but because you love it. Because you’re passionate about it, and it gives you joy. Because it’s a miracle that you even can do it.

You’re already perfect. Being content with yourself means realizing that striving for perfection is based on someone else’s idea of what “perfect” is … and that that’s all bullshit. Perfect is who you are, not who someone else says you should be.

Maybe this is what I should concentrate on, instead of all of those other things I feel I need to change about myself. Then maybe I could see that the list of what needs to be changed isn't really as long as I thought.

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