Saturday, September 20, 2008


I'm happy to welcome Claire Mysko, author of YOU'RE AMAZING to the party. I met Claire last month in New York and she is about the most genuine person you'd ever want to know. Give it up for Claire!

“I’m fine.” See also: “Don’t worry about me,” “I’ve got it under control,” and “Everything is okay.”

Those were lies I told on a regular basis when I was a struggling Perfect Girl. I didn’t eat enough because I wanted to be the thinnest. I beat myself up over any grade less than an “A” because I wanted to be smartest. I took care of everyone else except myself. And no matter how dark things seemed, I never let down my guard because I was embarrassed to clue anyone in to the fact that I was anything other than that polished, together girl I tried so hard to be. Two things I learned in the process: 1.) The quest for perfection is a very lonely road and 2.) It’s pretty darn exhausting.

I don’t think I ever realized that I was lying all those years until I finally figured out what it meant to be honest about my feelings. Instead of “I’m fine,” I tried “I’m overwhelmed” (and all those other fun emotions I can now conveniently broadcast from my MySpace page). To my surprise, the world didn’t cave in. Shock of all shocks, I did not melt into a pile of nothingness. In fact, I actually started to feel stronger.

I used to believe that the harder I worked on my Perfect Girl act, the closer I would get to real-life perfection. Of course there was one major flaw in my logic--real-life perfection doesn’t exist (not for real-life humans, anyway). So I’ve officially given up the act. I’ll never be perfect, ho-hum. But you what? I am amazing. Amazing girls and women take risks. We make mistakes and we learn from them. We aren’t paralyzed by our “flaws” and fears. We are powerful and beautiful, and if we put all our amazing qualities together, we can change the world. Yep, optimism is another benefit that comes with kicking the perfection habit!

Do you try to be perfect? Do you feel guilty if you're open about your feelings? Leave a comment below to win an autographed copy of You're Amazing!