Sometimes I feel inadequate. And because I’m a woman, or even more so because I am a HUMAN, I feel inadequate. I get lost in my mistakes, my down falls. I critique everything…my not-six pack abs, my cellulite, my pasty skin. I hate myself for struggles I cannot control, such as eczema, letting this battle control how confident I feel in my own skin. There are times when I just look at myself with such disgust. There are times when I just feel down, not good enough, knowing I haven’t reached my goals. How many times have I given myself unrealistic expectations to be perfect? To not make any mistakes? Countless.
I know I’m not alone here. I see it in the social media accounts I follow. In the comments there are judgments. Some of the posts are responses to this…sometimes responses of defeat, sometimes responses of defense, sometimes responses of triumph. I see this thought of inadequacy, imperfection, in my friendships. How many times have we gone to our girlfriends and just complained about something we don’t like, or maybe even something we completely hate, about our bodies? I see it in my family. I even hear it from women I don’t know in clothing stores and coffee shops. And I’ve realized how sad it is. How can we keep telling ourselves lies? What is going to benefit from living in our imperfection? I don’t know about you, but I need affirmation. I need encouragement and words of truth. And if that’s what I need, what am I doing by continually breaking myself down by criticizing every imperfection? Where is the praise? Where are the words of affirmation? So, ladies, here it is…. I hope some of these words reach you. I want you to tell yourself this. I want you to tell others. Maybe, just maybe, if we start telling each other the beautiful things we see, we’ll stop criticizing the other parts.
- You totally rocked that workout today! (No matter WHAT time you did it, and how long it was, and how hard it was to complete)
- You are beautiful. (Period.) You. Are. Beautiful. (Believe it!)
- Wow, you are so strong! I admire so deeply how you handle situations. I admire the strength to be patient. I admire your strength to stand up for what’s right.
- You are so hard working! You deserve a rest.
- You are loved. Deeply. Passionately, Forever.
- There is grace in your life, please accept it. I care so deeply about you that I don’t want you to be burdened by perfection.
- Your struggles (what you may call flaws) they are beautiful. They are real, they make you unique, and I love them.
- You are stronger and more beautiful than you know. This goes far deeper than the skin covering your muscles. It lies deep within your heart.
I could probably keep writing these forever. But, I do want to get this message out, so I’ll stop there. I would like a favor though. If you’re reading this, please comment with an affirmation that you would like to share with someone, or a struggle that you need to take off your heart. Share it with me so I can pray for you. Share it just to get rid of that burden. I don’t always have a solid answer for everything, but what I do know is this. YOU…yes you, are so loved. Feeling inadequate, imperfect, is normal. As humans we fall short all of the time. God knows this, he knows all of our imperfection. But, Jesus was sent to make us perfect and new again. This has already been done for you. This was done so that we do not have to carry the burden of trying to be perfect. So those feelings of imperfection, shame, inadequacy…they are lies that you are not meant to be telling yourself. So, let them go. You may set perfect goals and come out with imperfect results. Give them to Jesus, let yourself be free and real. No matter where you are in your journey in life, in fitness, in health…just know this: You are perfectly imperfect. And you are beautiful.