“You are allowed to be both a masterpiece and a work in progress, simultaneously.” ~Unknown
This quote bubbled to the top of my mind as I listened to Tom Friedman talk to Charlie Rose about his new book, Thank You for Being Late. We are pushed to go so quickly in this world, to change with the times. To keep up, grow, see, hear, and do faster, better, and more than ever before. It can lead us to be very tough on ourselves for not getting everything done perfectly every single time.
It’s no coincidence that this unprecedented level of change at an unprecedented pace has coincided with a happiness pandemic in the U.S. This article in MarketWatch outlines some of the reasons, but I think it’s Tom Friedman who’s really onto the crux of our deep unhappiness. We are much too hard on ourselves. We don’t let ourselves be beginners. We don’t let ourselves be works in progress. And we don’t let others do this either. We are going too fast.
So right now, take a moment. Think about what makes you marvelous, even the smallest slightest things. Maybe things no one else even knows about you. And then also think about all of the things you’re learning. Follow your curiosities with wild abandon. Don’t apologize for being at the start of your journey. Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle, as Jon Acuff so beautifully said. Let yourself be amazing, and also be in the process of becoming someone even greater. And love all of you—who you were, who you are, and who will you be.