Almost four years ago I made a pact. It wasn’t a fun, candle-heavy, twilight-timed affair where I ended up initiated into a super cool, witchy circle, and it definitely wasn’t as intense as the blood-pacts you see on TV shows and in films (they look terrifying). It was just me, in my room, during a not-so-great time, making a series of promises to a mirror in an effort to be more mindful and kind to myself, before mindfulness and self-care had been coined as phrases. Or if they had been, I wasn’t aware of them then.
Making commitments in a negative headspace generally isn’t the best of ideas; there’s a lot of ill feeling being fired off in various directions, goals or targets aren’t always attainable, and if you fall short it can be a slippery descent into The Void. Thankfully, logic, reason, and good old common sense were with me that day, and I was focusing on lessening the damage of my current situation back then, rather than making any life altering plans. I couldn’t change my situation without major issues, but I could change how I reacted to it, change how I played the hand that was being dealt out to me. It was a little bit of control gained back in a game where I didn’t know what the rules were, and it’s one of those things that I’ve done that have somehow managed to work out quite well for me in the long run.
And it’s to do with my flaws.
If you say you don’t have flaws, you’re lying. Not just to whoever you are talking to, but also to yourself. We all have flaws. Humans, by design, are flawed. We’re designed to grow, to change, to evolve, and that process involves us addressing parts of ourselves that are no longer compatible with the narrative that we want to either be a part of, or portray.
But I’m not going to be rattling off things about surface flaws, those that are to do with appearance – body hang ups in the age of body positivity are issues for another post – instead, I want to talk about internal flaws. Those to do with our personalities, or mentalities, and the importance and real, tangible value that comes with not just acknowledging them, but owning them.
I’m a pretty introspective individual. Sometimes this can be absolutely terrible, I can get very into my own head obsessing over the smallest of things, but it can also be incredibly useful. Being in tune with yourself, your actions and reactions, your attitudes both towards others and you, can grant you such a balancing perspective of how you navigate life. It can help you build stronger friendships, as you can give people a heads up on what you’re currently going through (if you want to), or kinks in your design that you’re aware of. The ability of introspection allows you to identify the flaws that you have, and then grants you the chance to own them.
And why is owning your flaws valuable?
Well. Even if they seem like something you’d rather want to hide, shove down into the deepest darkest depths of your core and forget about, I’d urge you not to. Owning your flaws means that people cannot use them to hurt you. Poking and prodding at insecurities is the fallback method for most people trying to get a rise out of those they, for whatever reason, want to hurt. Insecurities are our bare bones, the things we know are there but are desperately trying to hide. They’re a target, one that people find a perverse glee in uncovering and scoring bullseyes. If you own your flaws, you take the target away. You take away the ability for someone to use yourself against you.
Almost four years ago now, I was sat down and had a sizable quantity of myself proverbially cut open, with salt proverbially rubbed into both time-old and super fresh wounds. It was an experience that pretty much numbed me as a person to a lot of what happened in the immediate months after. The flaws I had were picked at and used against me in what I’m assuming was a control mechanism, but I try not to dwell on the specifics. It was an all around rough time and I never wanted to give anyone that ability again, even accidentally.
So I made a pact with myself. I’d look at all of the things that they said, work out which were true and which I could disregard because ~projections~, then go from there. Had I been able to do this at a time when I was more capable of mental acrobatics, then I think it would’ve been a fab exercise for personal growth. Mostly, it just helped me identify areas of myself that I wanted to work on, and then kick started a pretty dissociative phase.
The dissociation, here, is mildly irrelevant, but since I’m discussing flaws, you can have that one of mine for free: if I’m truly having a shit time I’ll dissociate. Or over-think and then dissociate
Taking that time to really look at the inner workings, even if it was just a precursory glance that first time, did help immensely, though. Once you identify your flaws, and this is the part where I start talking about value, once you know what you’re slightly predisposed to – in the fuck up sense – it makes it very hard for people to be able to use it against you. Suddenly the ‘oh you’re so vain’ comments are met with a ‘I know? And?’ rebuttal, rather than shock, a brief moment of panic, and some cobbled together answer thrust in a very ‘clumsy schoolgirl who just awkwardly dropped all her books in front of the cool kids’ way.
Knowing, and then owning your flaws is one way to be unapologetically yourself.
It also allows you to pick and choose which ones to work on, if you want to. You get to decide which ones are most important to your own development as a human, and how you go about tackling it. Being pushed onto the backfoot because someone came brandishing a specific flaw at you like a weapon doesn’t happen (much) to me any more.
People can’t use my flaws to hurt me anymore. And we all know the insults about appearance and intelligence are the last straws anyone grabs at in a fight.
For me, owning my flaws has been pretty instrumental in trying to be a better adult/person . It makes it way more easy to sift through the sorts of people I’d like to be associating myself with, and also makes me a more conscientious and observant friend; I am a very extroverted person and know that I can be A Bit Much, not everyone can deal with that for long periods of time and that’s ok,
[what i’m wearing:
Oh wow, Fii is wearing a check tennis skirt, what’s new there???? I do own other clothes, I promise. They’re just super easy to wear and style and are super popular everywhere at the moment sooooo….
This one is from H&M, I picked it up when I was still in England, and it’s had a fair amount of usage already. It’s really easy to style, pair it up with something lighter for summer months, darker for colder months or a more grunge vibe. I thought that it’d be fun to shoot at the disused theme park in Seoul because it has those darker ‘hellchild’ vibes.
I styled it with a long sleeved slogan crop top, since Korea’s crop tee game is insanely strong, and I like offsetting the flippy skirts with tighter tops. This one, though, I got in winter, so the fabric is thick, and this shoot happened at the height of Korean summer. In humidity. I almost died. For the weather now though, it’d be just fine.
The shoes are from one of the shoe shops in Edae, as much as I’d like them to be real Gucci, they’re not. And, as this outfit post is lacking a lot in the way of accessories, I think I’m going to set myself the challenge of accessorising more from now on. Autumn/Winter is the season of fab headwear, and I have my eye on berets again…
Watch this space, I guess.]
Let me know what you think of this outfit, and if you agree that owning your flaws has any value for you! As always, you can find me on my other social media – if you especially want to keep up with my life in Korea then you can follow me on instagram or on youtube!