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Unique and Quirky vs. Defective

April 24, 2012

Emailing back and forth with my brother-in-law (thanks Dick), I realized that I’ve always been put off by the word defects when it’s applied to people.  It implies there’s something inside of us that we need to get rid of.  Remember the trite but true phrase, whatever we resist persists?  Talk about a recipe for disaster!  I’m focusing on what’s wrong with me, thinking I need to get rid of it, and I’m just growing it!!

Yes, I think we need to see ourselves clearly.   I’m a big fan of being honest about my own unique ways of sabotaging myself vs. moving myself in the direction of what I want.  At the same time, I don’t think I’ve ever benefitted from someone, myself included, referring to parts of me as defective.  Seriously, have you??!!

I have benefitted immeasurably from the responses I’ve gotten when I’ve asked for support, suggestions and ideas around what I want, where I’m going, and how I might get there.  My clients have told me that they come for support, suggestions and ideas on how to create a more satisfying life experience.  No client has ever said, “You know Robyn, I really appreciate you telling me what’s wrong with me and making it clear that I’m not okay and won’t be unless I get rid of parts of myself”.

My suggestion is that we eliminate the defect word, at least in the context of describing what’s wrong with us.  Instead, let’s focus on the reality that we’re all a bit quirky and unique, and acknowledge that’s what gives us color and vibrancy.  Then we can take all the energy we’ve been putting into trying to get rid of parts of ourselves, which I’ve noticed never works anyway,  and put it into growing our strengths and utilizing our unique quirkiness in ways that serve us and the world!

So here’s my question for you:  If you saw your life as an opportunity to make friends with yourself rather than an opportunity to fix what’s wrong with you, would you behave any differently as you moved into your day each morning?  This morning?

P.S.  Still experiencing some glitches with our comments section.  So if you’d like to leave a comment but aren’t seeing any text by the boxes, the top box is for your first name, the second box is for your email address, ignore the third box, and put your comments in the larger box, and then click on ‘post comment’.  Should be fixed by the next posting.



  1. Scott says:

    Defect, such an ugly word when referring to a person. One thing I’ve had to learn is that I don’t have any defects. I have strengths and, just like the rest of humanity, I have opportunities. Sometimes they’re one in the same, which still seems like such a foreign concept to me that I haven’t quite reconciled with it yet. I’m working on that though. We’re all human, and the sooner we accept people for who they are and not who we want them to be, the sooner we’ll stop viewing somebody as ‘defective’ and view them just how we view ourselves. That being people with different strengths and opportunities.

  2. Catherine says:

    If I were making friends with myself, it’s interesting that I would enjoy the uniqueness and receive the quirks as color. For the longest time, though, that same “uniqueness”, those same “quirks” that are mine I perceived as faulty – defective. I considered myself a work in progress but with the idea that the progress was to get rid of the “weird” stuff. Now, I’ve decided to nurture the weirdness that is me. “Defective” isn’t even a pleasing word to say. “Creative”. “Vibrant”. “Emotionally Rich and Diverse”. “Expressive”. Better!

    • robyn1001 says:

      Catherine, so glad that you’ve morphed into appreciating you, literally, just as you are. Best, Robyn

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