Do Not Be Perfect, Be Brave

girl in street staring at camera, strong woman, being brave, be brave
Rachel Ruquet

It’s not about being perfect. It’s not about falling into a career path in which you’re always going to excel, or following a road that’s always shining and filled with answers to every question you may have. It’s not about chasing this ‘golden ideal,’ or this ‘dream life,’ whether that means a picket-fenced house or a fancy car or a person you can walk alongside who’s everything you imagined.

It’s not about pursing a life in which you’ll never fail, never make mistakes, never do or say the wrong thing or get your heart broken. It’s not about getting into a relationship with someone who never lets you down, who never fights with you, who never makes love hard.

Actually, existing on this planet, fighting this fight, pushing through these beautiful and sometimes painful days is about being brave. Not perfect.

You have to be brave to wake up and start another day. You have to be brave to pick up the pieces and prepare yourself to start again. You have to be brave to continue forward, even when you’re a shattered mess on the floor.

You have to be brave enough to love, to forgive, to learn, to grow, to heal. You have to be brave enough to try, to fail, to fall, to begin again. You have to be brave enough to be imperfect.

Because in your imperfection—that’s where you grow. That’s where you make the mistakes that begin to define your future. That’s where you discover and grab hold of your potential. That’s where you hit rock bottom and find the ground in which to rise from. That’s where you stand.

In your imperfection, you realize the ways you can change, can become stronger, can fight a better fight the next time. In your imperfection, you realize what you can do better, what limits you can exceed, what new limits you can create for yourself.

In your imperfection, you learn it was never about having a life, a relationship, a career, a self-image that is spotless, but being able to rise above your wildest dreams. To reach far beyond your goals. To mess up and break and rebuild. To be brave.

So be brave. Shatter expectations. Say no, say yes. Scream your hopes to the sky. Shine with all your brilliance, even if you make mistakes along the way.

Do the things that scare you. Chase the people and dreams you long to hold. Challenge yourself. Take risks. And do not fear failure. For in your lowest moments, you will rise. In your darkest corners, you will create light. In your brokenness, you will find bravery.

And that, my dear, is more than enough. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Marisa is a writer, poet, & editor. She is the author of Somewhere On A Highway, a poetry collection on self-discovery, growth, love, loss and the challenges of becoming.

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