Those of us who are picky tend to also want things in our lives to be perfect. Perfection is an awfully high standard to try to achieve, and for us to expect perfection out of ourselves every time we try something is unfair. There is no way that we can live up to our unrealistic standards.
So the thing to do is something that seems easy but is, in actuality, hard. That thing is to embrace imperfection. When you embrace imperfection, you are giving yourself permission to be a work in progress.
It might be easier to choose to embrace imperfection in one specific area, such as organizing a room or menu planning. If the room isn’t totally organized, it’s all right. My room will never be totally organized. My goal is not perfection. If I can find stuff without panic and if the floor is clear, I am happy. As for the menu planning? I’m not there yet. That can be a future goal. And that’s okay. Small changes are always easier than big ones.
One area in which I chose to embrace imperfection is in making self portraits. I’ve always had difficulty in making pictures of me look like me. It is, I think, a fairly common problem. Until just a few weeks ago, this was not a problem at all. Probably because I hardly ever paint portraits of myself. But a few weeks ago, I joined a facebook group that is dedicated to self portraits. One of the interesting rules of this group is that we can only post our drawings or paintings once a week, on Sunday. The portrait has to be drawn from life. That is to say, by looking in a mirror. No self-portraits drawn from a photograph. So I started doing weekly self-portraits. Unfortunately, because of my imperfections, I managed to break my hand mirror and am now sadly looking forward to seven years of bad luck. 👾
I have found the group to be very friendly, very supportive, and made up of incredible artists. I am motivated to continue drawing and painting self-portraits because I know that it is okay for me to choose to be imperfect. And, not only that, it is a way for me to display my imperfections. Human faces aren’t “perfect.” In fact, it’s the imperfections in our faces that give them their character.
I am currently working on my third self portrait. For this one, I have chosen to only use two colors: purple and pink. It is the most limited palette that I’ve tried yet. It’s a fun experiment so I am sharing the work in progress.
How have you embraced your imperfections lately?