Wabi-Sabi is an ancient Japanese philosophy, which puts emphasis on the acceptance of the imperfection and transience of life.
It’s a way of living through authenticity, simplicity and gratitude, appreciating the value and the beauty of the imperfect, impermanent and incomplete.
Something broken, flawed, with scars can be recreated into something that has value, a new purpose, as in Kintsugi, the old Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with gold. Instead of hiding the cracks, they are accentuated and the result is something beautiful and unique.
Wabi-Sabi & therapy
Many people look for perfection in them and their life, consider flaws and mistakes as “enemies” and try to create a perfect image of themselves.
They compare themselves with other people and their life with other people’s life, putting a lot of pressure on themselves to be someone they are not. But behind this “mask” they put on, there may hide a great emotional suffering, self-criticism, shame, guilt, a low self-esteem, lost hopes and dreams, the need to be heard, accepted, loved and understood.
Hiding, ignoring or fighting against what we don’t like or hurts does not make it disappear and demands a lot of energy. It creates self-defensive attitudes and even greater emotional suffering and limits our potential and opportunities in life. There remains little place to express one’s true self, to grow and live an authentic and fulfilled life.
Failures and mistakes are opportunities. They help us improve ourselves, grow and develop compassion and self-compassion.
We cannot change our past, certain situations or other people and we cannot stop time. What we can change is how we think, feel, how we react and the choices we make in the present.
Therapy can help you understand and accept yourself as you are, as well as the changes in your life. To embrace imperfection. To give them a useful meaning and find serenity, grow and live a fulfilled life.
Resisting change creates in us emotions like fear, sadness and anger and affects our personality, relationships and our well-being. Accepting change and embracing imperfection in ourselves gives us freedom, balance, autonomy and peace of mind.
Accepting that inevitable changes and imperfection are part of life doesn’t mean to be a passive witness or a powerless victim of them. It means acceptance of what is part of natural process of life, of what is not within our power to change, but also to take responsibility of how we want to live our life, how we want to be and redirecting our energy towards what we can change and is beneficial for us.
In therapy, you have the opportunity to recognize your value and appreciate your unique individuality, by a deep understanding and acceptance of yourself. You learn how to listen and heal the wounded parts of yourself. To let go of the past and consciously create the life you want for you now.
You may identify and nurture your real needs and learn to develop self-care habits, to set boundaries and priorities.
Therapy helps you develop awareness and create a new, more helpful mindset, overcoming past conditioning and being more centered on the present, in order to respond in the “here and now”.
Self-awareness, self-acceptance, self-compassion and self-care lead us towards an authentic way of being and living.
Self-care demands us to let go of what harms us or no longer serves our well-being and our growing, in order to allow ourselves to heal, to re-gain autonomy and to create healthier habits.
In the safe and supportive therapeutic environment, we learn how to create positive change for us, but also to accept what cannot be changed and to find new growth opportunities from difficult situations.