Thursday, January 31, 2013

Imperfection is Awesome!

I kinda feel like Wayne from "Wayne's World" reading that title, but that's cool!

So kids, today we're gonna talk about perceived imperfection vs. the reality that we are all, in fact, perfect, just as we are. Right now.  At this very moment.
And when I say "we're gonna talk," I mean, of course, I'm gonna write and you can read.  If you like.  Feel free to skip this and move along to your next blog.  No hard feelings.

The biggest obstacle to getting what we want/need is often the intrinsic belief that somehow we don't deserve it. It can be a subconscious thing, buried so deeply that we're never aware of it.  Heaven knows I've held that belief for far too long, and have had a heck of a time getting rid of it! I'm much more forgiving of others their so-called faults, mistakes, and imperfections than I am of my own, and I think that's pretty common.

Something I learned 20 years ago was that it is those very imperfections that make us interesting.  I remember sitting in rehearsal watching my fellow actors struggle with a scene, and getting frustrated because it wasn't playing out the way they pictured it in their heads.  Thing was, what they were doing was WAAAAAAAY more interesting than what they had PLANNED to do.  It's like the difference between watching an actor trying to cry and watching him trying NOT to cry.  The latter, IMHO, is much more real, human, and, yes, interesting.
Then, of course, I went to L.A. and forgot it all.  The land where everything is plastic and everyone wants to look and be perfect, all the time.
Which results in everyone being BORING all the time.

I was watching the movie version of "Les Miz" recently.  There's been a lot of talk about Russell Crowe, and the fact that his voice isn't as *perfect* as everyone else's.  But I LOVED it!  First of all, I thought it fit the character of Javert perfectly.  Secondly, as much as I adore a trained, Broadway-caliber voice, sometimes I want to hear the rougher edges.  I would much rather hear an actor's real singing voice, even if it isn't considered particularly "good," than a dubbed singer filling in. Let's face it, if you cast an actor in a musical, having someone else do half the role is, well, kinda weird. (Another example: Pierce Brosnan in "Mama Mia."  He's probably not going to be starring in any onstage musicals anytime soon, but I liked that it was him singing, and I liked that it wasn't always pretty.  I remember a reviewer writing "Pierce Brosnan cannot sing. Period." Well, seems to be that's exactly what he DID do in that film!  The argument is invalid!)

Yesterday in yoga class there was a young woman with a series of moles all across her upper arms and neck.  At first I thought it was a tattoo.  I wondered how much time she'd previously spent lamenting their presence and trying to cover them up.  I hope it was no time at all.  And I think they looked really cool.  And, again, I found myself admiring someone's "imperfection."  They make her unique, and they make her even more beautiful.

Of course, Hollywood and Madison Avenue can only stay in business if they can keep convincing us we are sub-par. As Eleanor Roosevelt (apparently, although it may have been someone else) once said, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."

So I say we stop letting them!

I'm running a little experiment on myself:  Usually, in the late afternoon, I start snacking.  It's out of habit, mainly, and because of other (emotional) issues.  Yesterday I wrote down what many of those issues are. And I felt REALLY depressed.  But y'know what?  I lived. It didn't kill me.
  Today I'm trying to feel the stuff they make me feel, rather than snack them away. And seeing as it's almost dinner time, I must say I've done pretty well (yay me!).I was even able to respond to a a nasty online comment someone made to me without getting mean.  Smug, yes.  But not mean.  :)

OK, one more showbiz example and then I'll wrap up: When Benedict Cumberbatch was in drama school, one of his teachers told him he'd never make it because he has "a face like a horse."  (Acting teachers can often be VERY nasty!)  Well, in 2010, BC was named British GQ's Man of the Year and photographed for their cover.  If I were him, I would have blown that cover up to poster size and sent it to that teacher! But he's a better man than I am (um, literally, since I'm, y'know, female). He focused on becoming a better actor, and, well, look at him now!

It just goes to show, again, that just because someone says or thinks something about us doesn't mean it's true.

So I'm going to try and love my perfect imperfections.

Who knows?  It might just work!

1 comment:

Geosomin said...

a face like a horse? But he's so uniquely handsome! People are crazy. Trying to live up to other's expectations is enough to drive you mad...

I totally agree with you. I struggle with being better and feeling better and kept from really trying to do things for myself for so long because deep down I would feel like I didn't deserve it...took me forever to learn that yes, I am worth the care and attention I give others. :)