Befriending our Flaws

broken mirror

All humans are flawed.

Leaders are human.

We all carry wounds.



The real question is,

Where will those flaws take us?

What will they teach us?

How will they shape our thoughts?



Do we see them as friends?

Or enemies?

Will we go to war with ourselves?

Or make peace possible?

Will we be divided?

Or whole?

Will we fight to conceal and defy our flaws?

Or let them inspire compassion?



Will we become closed?

Or open.


Or soft.

We are imperfect leaders.

We live in an imperfect society.

Work with imperfect people.

Strive in an imperfect system.

Will we break ourselves against the uncertainty?

The unfairness.

The frustration.

Or will we lean in and let these things teach us?

Guide us.

Inspire us.

We must choose.

Again and again.

It is our flaws that inspire our passions,

Inform our empathy,

And unite our stories.

If we let them.

We’ve been taught to fear our flaws.

Laugh them off.

Beat them into submission.

Bury them.

What if,

This is a lie?

What if,

Our flaws can be a sourceĀ of our greatest potential.

Our deepest relationships.

Our greatest art.

Our hero’s journey.

They can bend us toward “the better angels of our nature”,

Or bind us in fear and judgement.

Our hearts connect at the broken places.

But only if there is a way in.

Our flaws can inform our leadership.

Teach us humility.

Make us wiser.

More lighthearted.



Denying our wounds, worries and weaknesses will not make us stronger.

Only weaker.

Their presence grows.

They get louder.

Assume more control.

We become more sensitive to and angry with the flaws in others.

We withdraw.


When we befriend our flaws,

They become our ally.

A resource.

And we become more fully alive.

More fully here.

And more prepared to lead.

In this imperfect world.

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