Day 29: Learning to Embrace Our Imperfections

There isn’t 1 perfect person on the face of the earth.  Everyone has flaws.  Everyone makes mistakes.  Everyone stumbles.  So why are we so ashamed of and mortified by our imperfections.  We work so extremely hard to hide them from the rest of the world as well as ourselves.  I’m as guilty of this as anyone.  I can honestly say that I am working on this but it’s taking a lot of baby steps to get to a point where I don’t feel the need to hide my imperfections from everyone.  I don’t hide my mistakes at work.  If I make a mistake and I figure it out before someone else does, I admit it and then fix it or vice versa.  But I do get angry with myself.  Why?  Because other people see my imperfection.  That’s my delusion…that others don’t know that I’m not perfect.  We work so hard at being perfect that we lose sight of what we’re doing.  We don’t take chances with our writing because it might be a mistaken notion and we don’t want to have to admit it or fix it.  I came out of the perfection closet on this blog when I admitted that I went down the wrong path with Rapture and that I’m going to have to backtrack in order to fix it.  I would love for it to have been perfect from the very beginning but not even the most talented writers have perfect first drafts.  Most of them will tell you to just write because the magic usually happens when you edit and do rewrites of the material.  Embrace your imperfections and just let your writing flow.  Don’t read or judge it until it’s done.  And when you do go back over it, don’t waste time by beating yourself up because there are typos and grammar mistakes or the flow doesn’t sound absolutely perfect.  Do what a writer does…fix the typos and grammar mistakes and figure out why it’s not flowing the way you want it to then do the rewrites.  Don’t beat your head against the wall and tell yourself that you’re a loser and a fake and that you should just give up on your dream because you have no talent.  1st, never give up on your dreams.  Dreams are what get us through the rough times, dark times, soul-sucking times, and just plain everyday life.  We need our dreams so hold on to them as tightly as you can and never voluntarily give them up.  2nd, every writer writes, edits, and rewrites their work.  It’s not that we don’t have talent, it’s just part of the process.  You aren’t a loser or a fake.  You are a writer.  So just be a writer.  Accept that you’re not perfect and that you will make a lot of mistakes while writing…that’s why there are erasers and backspace and delete keys.  When you are writing, you’re brain and creativity are in high gear and they have only 1 intention…get the words on the page.  Screw grammar, spelling, and punctuation because if you spend too much time worrying about those things, the words will just evaporate.  I’m not saying don’t try to do your best in those areas while getting your words onto the page…just don’t stress over them.  Turn off your internal censor/editor and just get the words out of your head!  If you do that, there will probably be a more pleasing flow to your writing because it’s more natural and organic.  Just remember, our imperfections are what make us unique and will differentiate us from others.  Embracing them is what frees us from the unrealistic expectations that we place on ourselves.   Just look in the mirror and tell yourself that you’re imperfect and that’s perfectly okay because everyone else is too.  Then go sit down and let your perfectly imperfect words flow onto the page.   

“If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word.” ~ Margaret Atwood                          

About Donna Heilman

I am a writer that lives in Irving, TX with my husband, 3 dogs, and 5 cats. I am currently working on my novel, Rapture, as well as writing poetry and some short non-fiction. I am honestly writing this blog to feel more connected with other creative people.
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