Every day an elderly Chinese woman brought two large pots to a stream to fetch water for her household. The pots hung at both ends of a stick she carried on her shoulders. One of the pots was perfect, but the other had a crack in it.
At the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half-full. For a long time this went on, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water each day.
The perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the cracked pot was ashamed of its imperfection, miserable that it could only perform half of what it had been created to do.
After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, the marred pot spoke to the woman one day by the stream: “I am embarrassed because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.”
The old woman smiled and answered, “Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds along your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.”
While you may criticize yourself for your flaws, they may serve a purpose. What you perceive as your shortcomings give you character, and may endear you to others and serve them. Do not be hasty to judge yourself for your foibles. What you think may be the worst thing about you might be the best.
Excerpt from Alan Cohen’s A Daily Dose of Sanity book…