I will say this from personal experience, you win when you take ownership for your flaws and weaknesses.
I have no shame in saying this because it’s the truth. Growing up, I was associated with people who rarely took ownership for their flaws and weaknesses. As a young child, I never understood why and it never sat well with me. It often left me confused and asking myself so many questions. I didn’t understand why people wouldn’t own up to their mistakes, say sorry or just admit when they were wrong.
A simple, “I messed up and I’m sorry” goes a long way. Don’t you think?
When I was young and did something wrong, that little voice inside of me would speak loud and clear. My conscious would take over and I couldn’t help but speak the truth. I think being around people who were not always honest, didn’t make the best choices and lived a life I didn’t want for myself taught me a lot about owning my flaws.
It taught me the true definition of respect.
It taught me that when I was honest, I made people happy and trust me. It taught me that when I owned up to my wrongdoings people looked at me differently and in a way that I knew I had gained their respect. It taught me that using the words I’m sorry and truly meaning it often made the person(s) I was apologizing to immediately feel better and who wouldn’t want that?
Recently, I had to do something really really hard. It took a lot of courage and I was scared out of my mind, but I knew it needed to happen. I won’t get into details here, but I realized that I had some ownership that I needed to take responsibility for. After some self -reflection, I realized that I haven’t been the best version of myself, but I’m working on it. I go to therapy. I am putting in the work, time and effort and I could feel that this weight truly needed to be alleviated from my chest.
What I learned in the time frame of owning up to how I haven’t been the best version of myself, was that I am self-aware. During my time confiding in an individual who I greatly admire and hearing the words, “Jessica, you are so self-aware” was one of the most eye-opening moments in this season of my life. I needed to be validated that I was in fact self-aware.
When I think about those people in my life that own up to when they are wrong, own their flaws, say I’m sorry, call to apologize, and tell me, “I’m just in a really bad place right now,” I can only help but have the most respect. You know those people I’m talking about? The kind that are unapologetically apologetic and the campaign manager for their flaws.
I was raised on the principal, “Respect your elders.” Although I do see the respect in acts of kindness and courtesy, our elders are people too. Quite the contrary, our elders are not exempt from their flaws and being held accountable for their actions for the simple fact that they may have been born a few decades before us /me.
If a 95 year old granny cursed me out in a grocery store for accidentally bumping her basket with mine, I would expect her to apologize for her outburst. If a 15 year old curesed me out in a grocery store for accidentally bumping her basket with mine, I would expect her to apologize for her outburst.
Prime example that age does not make you exempt from your weaknesses and flaws.
If you are a parent, friend, cousin, sister, daughter, son, uncle, aunt etc . the greatest gift you can give the people you love is owning up to your flaws and weaknesses and modeling this to those who are young.
What is so bad about owning up to it anyway? I asked myself this question more times than I can count. I know that contest where you hold your breath can be fun, but holding in an, “I was wrong for telling you those mean and hurtful words” really isn’t that fun at all.
You’re not always right. Say it with me, “I am not always going to be right.”
Sometimes your human will come out and you may be really shitty to the people you love or people around you. You have permission to be human and have these moments because I would be lying if i said I didn’t. We all do.
What you do not have permission to do, is hide behind your flaws and weaknesses and continue to do them repeatedly. This is where consequences come in. This is where we lose respect from people. This is where we damage others. This is where we lose respect.
I realized that I have won, not against anyone else, but I won against myself and beat the odds I had against me. Just like you, I have been given opportunity since birth to hide behind my flaws and weaknesses or go camouflage and hope no one noticed. There are many times I would have LOVED to use them as a crutch for my actions, but I knew that wouldn’t get me to where I knew I was capable of going and where I wanted to be.
So, if you made it this far, my message is still the same. Today, if you know or feel like your flaws have been causing you to hide and your weaknesses have been causing you pain, I challenge you to own up to them. I challenge you to apologize and say I’m sorry, no matter how old you are.
I challenge you to grab your lit torch, do a victory lap and just own the hell out of those flaws and weaknesses because you in fact mastered the race against yourself the moment you own up to your flaws and weaknesses!