by Ivy from Beautifully Simply You
Today I turn 26! 25 was a really great year for me, and at 25 I realized that most of my entire life I was searching for perfection, but that my search for perfection kept me from recognizing that I needed help and kept me from telling my story.
The chase for perfection began at a young age for me. I was rewarded by my parents with money for getting A’s and B’s in school, so I created this ideal of perfection in my mind that I wasn’t good enough if I didn’t get all A’s and B’s. In college, when I became used to only seeing A’s on my report card, I was heart broken when I got a B, something that most people couldn’t understand why I was so upset. But in my mind, I had failed myself and others in my chase to perfection.
The desire to be perfect leaked in other parts of my life as well. I struggled with eating disordered behavior and body image issues because my body wasn’t perfect to society’s standards. The desire to be perfect allowed me to lie to the world about my relationship, claiming it was everything that I had wanted, because I couldn’t let anyone see that I was falling apart and that my relationship was a mess.
At 25, I stopped chasing perfection. I recognized there was no growth in whatever perfection was or might have been. And I realized that happiness, growth and my mental health would come from accepting my messy life, and accepting that I wasn’t alone in this messy journey. I realized that we are all seeking and searching for something and that if we seek perfection, we will just seek it out our entire lives and always be dissapointed for falling short. We may be searching for our higher purpose, searching for happiness, for love, or for the reasons behind our circumstances, but when we stop searching for answers and allow ourselves to just be, allow ourselves to be content with our current situation and know that growth and beauty will be on the other side if we keep fighting, that is when we will find true happiness.
Perfection is an unrealistic ideal, one that you will spend your whole life searching for if you let it. Perfection is an ideal that is different to everyone, so even if you reached your own view of perfection, you will always fall short of someone else’s ideal. And that cycle is disheartening. Accepting your mess will set you free from that cycle and give you an opportunity to build a life that isn’t perfect, but that is amazing as it can be, with flaws, beautiful flaws, mishaps and shortcomings. Those shortcomings are what makes life interesting, beautiful and fun. Why spend your life searching for perfect, when instead you can just search for you and embrace who you are? Being who you are is more beautiful than perfection ever would be.
Throughout this whole journey, we learn a lot about ourselves. We grow with every day, even when it feels like we are stagnant and stuck in the mud. We grow into understanding of our mess and we grow into acceptance and love for those on our messy ride with us, including ourselves.
On this journey, at the age of 26 I am embracing me, with my flaws that make me who I am. By accepting that perfection wasn’t possible or wasn’t even what I wanted, I was able to speak my truth and finally get the help I needed to heal the hurt from my past. At 26, I want to tell myself I am proud of myself for no longer seeking perfection and that it is perfectly fine to be who I am. And who I am is far from perfect. But that’s my favorite part about me, I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Be you, exactly as you are, in your imperfect mess, it’s my favorite look on you!
Be Beautifully Simply You