Can you recall a time in your childhood before you were ever criticized for certain actions or ways of being? This memory might be a stretch to remember, but wouldn’t it feel glorious!

Most of us grew up in an atmosphere where parents, siblings, cousins, friends, teachers and classmates felt it was their duty to inform us every time we didn’t measure up to a certain standard of acceptability or excellence. We live in a culture of comparison and often our high standards are filled with judgments, toward others and ourselves. From an early age, most of us were raised to believe that we embody certain flaws, perhaps in character, or in our mental or physical capacities.

Likely, our parents and teachers didn’t mean to influence us into carrying around these negative beliefs that weigh us down, but social conditioning can be a hard thing to see beyond in order to raise children in a conscious atmosphere where mistakes are simply seen as miss-takes, akin to an actor doing another take of their lines in order to get the fullest and richest delivery. A wise director might coach the actor and say, “Let’s try another take and this time, how about placing more emphasis on pausing for contemplation between these two words….”  The actor is not being told that they did anything wrong, only that the delivery could be more powerful and effective if they try it another way.

Imagine living your life in each moment and simply seeing your mistakes as opportunities to reassess how you can expand in your way of operating and being in the world.

Here’s another possibility…..what if some of your “mistakes” are the Universe’s way of using you as a conduit to discover new and inventive ideas? As an example, the invention of Penicillin was “accidently” discovered by Alexander Fleming in 1928. A Petri dish was mistakenly left open in his laboratory causing a blue-green mold to form. He had the insight to explore the properties of this mold and Penicillin was discovered.  What if another scenario had taken place? Had he seen the mold and reacted, thinking how stupid he was for leaving the dish open, in his anger he might have flung the blue-green slime against the hospital wall and history would have taken a different turn!

Perhaps all of your perceived flaws really are perfect, exactly the way they are. Perfect in the sense that they bring us the gift of accessing deeper compassion within and serve as a vehicle for opening our hearts more fully to the love that always dwells inside us, waiting to be shared with the world. Perhaps flaws don’t really exist, maybe they are simply our miss-takes sprinkled with judgments that we lodge in our daily set of beliefs and we convince ourselves that they are a genuine part of who we are.

Take a moment right now and imagine wrapping your arms around yourself and filling your entire being with love’s brilliant light, wisdom, compassion, and grace. At your core you are always perfect, love-filled and whole. Now take that love and see the grace and perfection in all those that you’ve been holding any ounce of judgment or resentment towards.

Let’s embrace, rather than resist, every moment’s opportunity to feel the perfection of life’s wondrous journey. Your perceived flaws are truly your teachers for living an expansive, insightful, and enlightened life. Dive in and live it fully!

Carl Studna is a world-renowned photographer, inspirational speaker, teacher and award winning author. Carl’s intimate portraits of influential people ranging from Sir Paul McCartney to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, are published and known worldwide. Carl has taken his message and experiences to print in his book, CLICK! Choosing Love One Frame at a Time. Studna’s innovative work, the LuminEssence Method©, teaches a new paradigm for radiating the light that resides within revealing each person’s authentic gifts.

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