Quotable Insights: Perfectly Imperfect

Via Victoria Klein
on Jan 18, 2011
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Like many people, I find quotes to be exceptionally inspiring. It is truly amazing how a particular sequence of words can change your entire mood, perspective, and overall outlook on life.

Quotes can take on an entire life of their own … and that’s what I’m here to explore. This is the first of an entire series of “Quotable Insights” posts. In each post, I’ll share one of my favorite quotes, along with an expanded contemplation on its meaning (inspired by an earlier quotes-based post of mine).

“Being happy doesn’t mean that everything is perfect. It means you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.” – Anonymous

The concept of perfection is something that we are taught very young, but it contains numerous logistical flaws, specifically its relativity. Your interpretation of perfection maybe entirely different than my version of perfection. One person’s perfection may be another’s imperfection.

So we can conclude that perfection is relative to each individual, which means that it can’t be formally defined. That means that, technically, nothing can be perfect and, therefore, everything is imperfect.

The idea of striving for perfection goes back to the beginning of recorded history, but could we make everything in our lives “perfect” when perfection doesn’t truly exist?

Step back for a second and scan the room you are in. Then close your eyes and scan your inner self. There it is – the realization that your entire world is already perfectly imperfect.

Happiness is always within your reach. It is not something you need to strive for or invest in. Happiness is available anytime, anywhere. Imperfections are many, perfections are none, happiness is yours.

How do you interpret this quote?

[Photo Credit: Bruce Berrien]


About Victoria Klein

Introduced to Yoga in 2000 at a gym in Connecticut, my personal practice has taken me through a crippling post-high-school era of depression and anxiety, 3 cross-country relocations, + the general rollercoaster of life. In 2012, I fulfilled a major item on my bucket list by graduating from the True Nature School of Yoga 200-Hour program in Oceanside, CA + eagerly began teaching as an RYT 200. In 2013, I've continued my dedication to education by taking True Nature's 500-Hour program, progressing toward the RYT 500 designation. Also a professional freelance writer since 2005, my first book, 27 Things to Know about Yoga, was published in 2010. I previously worked the front desk at the well-known Yoga Tree studios in San Francisco + in the production department at Yoga Journal Magazine. In my spare time, you’ll find me cooking, running, taking lots of pictures, being a Marine Corps spouse, and infusing Yoga into my entire life. My Yoga classes are a dynamic blend of effort + ease, sweating + relaxation, with numerous opportunities + options given to make each individual class easier or harder, depending on how you feel that day. As a teacher, I strive to help my students find clarity, compassion, + patience, both on + off the mat. FYI: you should join my newsletter so you don't miss any of the fun! You can also connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, + Pinterest!


22 Responses to “Quotable Insights: Perfectly Imperfect”

  1. Lynn Hasselberger says:

    This is a great reminder. Nothing is perfect. We are as happy as we choose to be. Thanks, Victoria!

  2. You're welcome, Lynn – and thank you for taking the time to comment. 🙂

  3. To me looking for perfection is a very static feeling because once you get what you think you want, you don't want it to change, and your growth stops. Personally, living perfectly is about accepting where you are in the given moment regardless of the circumstances and allowing the present to flow.

  4. Vogue Yogini says:

    Great quote and surely insightful! I love any reminder that being happy is just that – BEING happy. Just do it! Sometimes we (and by "we" I definitely mean "me"!) get so caught up in fulfilling self-imposed roles, reaching goals, and "doing it all" that attaining some definition of perfection is not only futile but also silly since it does not equal happy. Strive for perfection but be willing to accept good enough in the face of doing your best. And, enjoy the moment. That's it, right? Thanks for this, Victoria – always enjoy your contributions.

  5. Ben_Ralston says:

    Everything is perfect!

  6. Loving the quotes and hope to see more from this series! This quote reminds me that everything is just as is should be and that we have everything we need, right here, right now. Reaching beyond that only causes suffering and disharmony. Be present and trust that all is as it should be.

  7. Everything is perfectly imperfect 🙂

  8. A very intelligent perspective, Meredith 🙂 It is very easy to get tunnel vision, stuck on some singular concept of perfection that, once obtained, we often find was far less "perfect" that we had envisioned. There is always a life to be lived & goals to explore, but the goal of perfection is a life wasted.

  9. I am personally guilty of getting caught up in "doing it all" as well! I think regular reminders of what is truly important helps to keep things in perspective. For me, that often comes in the form of quotes 🙂 Striving for personal improvement is peachy, but "perfection" is not a destination but an illusion.

  10. Thank you 🙂 and you can be sure there will be more! Every other week, there will be a new installment on Tuesdays 😀

    At this very moment, we have all we need. Happiness is always with us, but we must make the choice to embrace it!

  11. Ben_Ralston says:

    Or imperfectly perfect!

  12. Yes! I just saw this quote:

    “Have no fear of perfection–you’ll never reach it.”
    —Salvador Dali

  13. Steve says:

    Everything is as it should be in this moment. Outer world, inner self… Fallen angles we are, with singed wings and halos askew, trying to survive on a violent planet that hurtles through an even more destructive universe. Still, we love. We step outside of our tattered selves and hold the hand of a stranger, recite a prayer, believe that if we give goodness then goodness will enfold us. And this is perfectly imperfect. Yet, we look beyond the imperfections, the flaws within and without, and love. Well, that's what I try to do and there is no perfect reason for me to be happy, but I am. Might be the awareness thing. Thanks and love, Victoria, for this exercise!

  14. Beautifully phrased, Steve – I couldn't add one more word 🙂

  15. Lyn Hicks says:

    Happiness is truly a state of mind. It can be called forth at any time from deep within! It doesn't seem to be about perfection. It is more about how you feel. The practice is to call it forth when the outside isn't so pretty, daunting at times but with practice you can actually laugh at some of the crazy situations we encounter. Well said quote. Most all things are in a state of becoming so perfection seems to mean more complete than anything in the growing phase. Perfectly imperfect! Nature is a great way to jump into happiness if you need to generate the feeling! I find it the best trick of all!

  16. A beautiful explanation, Lyn 🙂 Thank you for taking the time to post it. Far too many see happiness as a destination & not an ongoing, morphing journey that we are free to experience at any single moment. Nature is an exceptionally important source of instant happiness for me too 😀

  17. Susi says:

    That’s lovely…and so true. I love the whole wabi-sabi idea too…that the “imperfection” of something is what makes it beautiful.

  18. I dont usually reply to posts but I will in this case. WoW. Interesting article. Were did you got all the information from tremendous tremendous.

  19. […] uncovered three big reasons why the “perfection myth” spins the fabric of […]

  20. Evan says:

    Everything is perfectly what it is! 😉