"Humility is nothing but truth, and pride is nothing but lying." - St. Vincent de Paul, 17th century French Catholic Priest
We human beings are imperfectly perfect. Through our imperfections (our mistakes) do we reach so-called perfection.
The amount of mistakes we produce on a daily basis is impeccable. Our mistakes are all over the place. From being forgetful to lazy, we're all a bunch of mistake-producing creatures
And I'm sure that just like myself, you would like to reduce the amount of mistakes you do.
Unfortunately, there will never be a way to fully rid ourselves of mistakes. That's why I started this article by saying that we are imperfectly perfect.
But we can work to attain a more perfect version of ourselves.
And as you all may know, to progress in anything worthwhile, taking it step by step may be the most effective way to fully progress in what it is you are pursuing.
And more often than not, the most important step is the first. Confucius, an ancient Chinese philosopher, once famously said, "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."
Therefore, the first step to attaining a more perfect version of ourselves is through accepting the fact that we are all full of shortcomings. We all commit mistakes, and often times they're more than we would like to acknowledge.
In order to decrease them, we must first acknowledge them. We must first lay our ego aside and lower ourselves in humility.
In other words, quite being stubborn.
You see, whoever succeeded on their self-improvement journey did so because they gave up on believing the façade we all like to tell ourselves, which goes something like this: "I'm perfect the way I am. I am capable of everything in this current state. I don't need to improve."
Be honest with yourself. This thought comes about all the time, especially when we are confronted with challenges. I sure know it does with me. But years back, when I decided to go on this self-improvement journey in my sophomore year of high school, when that façade came lurking in my mind again, I stopped it right in its tracks.
I remember that day like it was yesterday. I was in the boy's locker room right before tennis, and I had that thought. I stopped it in its tracks and told myself "No. You're not perfect. You're far from perfect. You are nowhere close to the goals you now have in mind. Humble yourself before God, and accept your shortcomings. Acknowledge your mortality. Lower yourself before God." I then told my coaches a few minutes later I wanted to become a professional tennis player. That was my first step.
Now, what's your first step going to be? More importantly, when will you take that first step? When will you sit yourself down and say "I can be a lot better than how I am right now. I'm making too many mistakes that are keeping me at bay from the fruits of life. My shortcomings are what's truly tearing me down."
I understand though. Some of you may shatter your whole ego when you proclaim this to yourself. It'll be painful. But you need to muster up all the courage you can get and be honest with yourself.
You and I are not where we are capable of being at in this present moment because of no one except ourselves.
As shown, a huge part of this first step of acknowledgement is to realize that it's your fault, not anyone else's.
Yes, we each have different circumstances which can dictate some things in our lives. But we all can change them. All we have to do is take that first step.
Acknowledge your shortcomings.