As somebody who’s “hobby-blogged” for almost 5 years, I have to say I’ve become a little annoyed.
Not with individuals—especially not with my handful of faithful readers and followers (love you guys! <3)—but more so with the extended blogging community and its central message at large.
I touched on this in an open letter and questioned some things in this post, but what I’m really trying to say is, I think the blogging/wellness community—while often full of inspiration and “real talk”—is partially stuck in a warped mindset that promotes the “should trap” I so desperately try to avoid in my life.
Have We Taken Self-Improvement Too Far?
While blogging is full of incredible entrepreneurs, go-getters, and strong women who break the molds and push against the odds (and we need those types, believe me!), it’s also full of those same nagging voices that try to convince you with the latest inconspicuous “sales” pitch that you’re not good enough just the way you are.
That you must set an infinite list of goals and create a number of awesome habits, and if you’re not practicing mindfulness, eating intuitively (but still 95% “clean”), moving in whatever way your body craves to move (but still sweating and pushing hard), using all-natural everything, and creating the ultimate side hustle-turned-business, or aching to change something about yourself, then you’re doing life wrong.
I’m guilty of this shit, too. I’ve binge-eaten Doritos and gorged myself on king cake in an effort to shun the “all healthy all the time,” borderline-orthorexic mindset that I want to speak against.
I’ve spent far too many hours in my own head trying to nail down every one of my (numerous) quirks and eccentricities in an effort to prove (to whom? I don’t know…) how self-aware I am.
(It’s worth noting that this self-awareness, while often beneficial, sometimes leads to deeper anxiety/depression because instead of just dealing with whatever issues/challenges come my way, I over-analyze the hell out of them.)
I’ve exercised when I didn’t want to (because move your body! get those 10,000+ steps in!) and sat around in the name of “guilt-free Netflix binges” when I wanted to be active.
In reality, I’ve often moved from one extreme (eating too healthily, exercising too much, etc.) to the complete opposite end of the spectrum (eating junk, being too sedentary, etc.).
What I’m trying to say is, sometimes I think we’ve taken self-improvement, as a concept, too far. And sometimes I think we need to cool it with the obsessive desire to better ourselves ad infinitum and just accept our true selves—our quirks, imperfections, ugliness, and messiness—as we are.
It’s essential to have goals and wish to improve or enrich our lives in different ways (I want to be more patient and kind, for example, and less fearful of taking risks), but it’s important to remember that we will never be perfect.
Perfection rests on a plane that doesn’t exist in our universe. It’s a myth. It’s a fantasy that keeps getting wilder and crazier and further from reality with each new discovery or kernel of knowledge we collect.
And, once perfection becomes the end-game and ultimate goal, it will crush you.
Once perfection becomes the end-game and ultimate goal, it will crush you. Click To Tweet
This wordy stream of consciousness is mostly advice to myself, but as I’ve learned through my more vulnerable posts, you guys struggle with some of the same thoughts, so it’s a reminder to you, as well.
Nobody—not one of us—will ever be perfect. We all have flaws, but we also have strengths.
Never forget that true living is within the balance. It’s among the highs and the lows, the wins and the losses, the laughs and the tears.
And when you feel overwhelmed—like you’re not looking far enough or climbing as high as the next person—remember this:
You are enough. Exactly as you are.You are enough. Exactly as you are. Click To Tweet
[linking up with Amanda for thinking out loud]
So tell me…
- Do you think our culture has taken self-improvement too far?
- Do you think you’d feel more confident and content if you just accepted some things about yourself instead of trying to fix everything?