Ladies, It´s Time to Stop Chasing the Ghost Called Miss “Perfect”
“I was born a little broken, with an extra dose of sensibility”-Glennon Doyle
Currently, I am reading a galvanizing “Untamed” book by Glennon Doyle, Sunday Times bestselling author. As reviews yell powerful messages “this book will shake your brain and make your soul scream”, many women dive into this intimate memoir hoping, that they will find the promised “True Untamed Self”. I am not an exception to this endless hunt of “true-self” and I too dig into the author´s inner enlightening moments, hoping, her experience will enlighten me too.
I fully recommend this book. It is a must <3
So here I am, came half the way through the book, and stopped by the urge to re-tell one of the chapters. Which truly touched me. Made sense. It was written right there in this book. Explained. Thoughts and emotions lost and unstructured in my head for years, finally came to sense. Something has moved within me. It made me make a decision. Like Glennon did.
The Perfect Woman
I am going to re-tell Glennon´s words, that are speaking on behalf of so many of us. In the Chapter called “Ghosts”, Glennon goes back and remembers: “When I was in my twenties, I believed that somewhere there existed a perfect human woman. She woke up beautiful, unbloated, clear fluffy-haired, fearless, lucky in love, calm, and confident. Her life was… easy. She haunted me like a ghost. I tried so hard to be her.”
I was the same. This never-ending hunt for the perfect-best version of me started in my teenage years and continued throughout my entire twenties. And here I am, tired and sick of hunting that ghost when coming closer to that big 3 and 0. What Glennon did when she hit her thirties? “I gave that ghost the finger. I quit trying to be the perfect woman and decided to celebrate my imperfection. I claimed a new identity: Jacked-Up Human! I announced to anyone who would listen, ´I am a hot mess and proud of it! I love this crappy version of humanity that I am! I am broken and beautiful!! Eff you, perfect woman!”
Give that pretty ghost the finger. You are enough!
How freeing! How easy it sounds, but let´s be honest, it is harder to truly feel it. Exactly! The problem is, even if we may come to this realization, we continue to believe, that there is an ideal human and that “I am not her.” And this is what Glennon calls “GHOSTS”. If you decide to stop pursuing those ghosts, you just decided to ignore it. But this rebellion is as much of a cage as obedience is. Either you pursing or ignoring, which means, it is just a reaction to some else´s way instead of forging your own.
The question we should be asking more and more is: “Where did we get the idea that there is some other, better, more perfect, unbroken way to be human? Where is the human being who is functioning ´correctly´, against whom we are all judging our performances? Who is she? Where is she? “
Glennon got free the moment she realized, that her problem is not that she is “not good enough”, but that she is not good enough GHOST. That ghost we all created in our heads, which does not even exist. Have you ever met a perfect, happiest, unbroken human being?
Shared Human Experience
When I think about it. I have never met. We all hurt people, and we are hurt by people. We all feel left out, jealous, tired, and sick. We lie and we are lied to. We have fallen in love and have also fallen out. We sweat and bloat. We are gassy and oily. We do not want children, we long for children and we love our children. We are at war with our minds, bodies, and souls. We are at war with one another. We wish we said all things while they were still here. And we are not saying those things when they are still here. We want to be forgiven and we cannot forgive. We believe, or we don´t. We are lonely and sometimes we want to be left alone. We want to be loved.
This is our shared human experience. Show me one person who does not feel those things. How and when did we come up with the “perfect” and “unbroken” human? There is no such human.
So we must stop hunting that perfect “us”, that lasting “happiness”. This uncomfortable feeling of deep pain, anger, yearning, confusion means that “you do not have a problem. It means you have a LIFE”.
We do not go through hard times, because we live our life wrong. Our life has ups and downs because we are doing it right. If you won´t accept that life is hard, then you will chase forever that ghost of “easy life, happy me, perfect me” and never catch it. It is alright to be broken, flawed, or imperfect, it means you are alive.
You are flawless with all your flaws.
Glennon stopped calling herself imperfect and in her forties, she re-wrote her self-description:
“I am forty-four years old. With all my chin hairs and pain and contradiction, I am flawless, unbroken. There is no other way. I am hunted by nothing.”
What Glennon made me realized is, that I have been hunting the ghost too. The ghosts I would never touch and feel because I am only human and always will be. The sooner I accept this, the sooner I can live my life freely with all the good or bad and never compare it to unreal ghosts created by our imagination.