I’m not Supergirl. And I don’t know any superheros. I know a lot of celebrities, but zero superheros.
Yes, I’m doing a post about not being Supergirl. Yes, I am wearing a cape. The world is full of contradictions.
My producer’s dad, Kyle Lehning, actually made a couple of albums with Lynda Carter, the original Wonder Woman, but that’s beside the point.
This is Lynda.
What if you aren’t what everybody thinks you are? What if you’re not quite as fabulous, skinny, put together, quick witted, fashionable, talented….err, perfect? What if you aren’t actually Supergirl (or guy as the case may be?) And what if instead of trying to cover up all the “imperfection,” you could use your weaknesses as your greatest strength? What if being vulnerable, open, letting down the facade actually could give you the things you want: relationship, connection, inspiration…
I’ve always been a ‘push the boulder up the hill’ kind of gal. I’ve always believed I was an under-dog in some way, but if I just worked harder, I could achieve to my goals. But part of my “work harder” mentality came with a perfection clause. It went like this, “if you just do everything exactly right, think things through from all angles, if you’re really prepared, and hyper vigilant, then you can do everything the “right” way.
Let me tell you, that way of living really SUCKS. When I was first signed to EMI/Capitol back in 2011, I thought if I could just take in everything that everyone said about ‘why women aren’t working in country music,’ and become an expert in the field, I could figure it out. I could “fix it,” if I just worked hard enough, and did everything perfectly. I’d listen to stories my radio promo team would tell about other female artists, and I’d think, ‘OK, well don’t do that.” Like it was that simple. Like it was just a puzzle. If I’m being honest, I probably thought I had WAY more control over the situation than I actually did. On the women-in-country-music front, I now believe it is a much bigger (potentially systemic) problem. But that doesn’t mean that it is without hope. 2015 was a shining example of great music finding a path to be heard, and of women getting a slightly larger slice of the country radio pie. But I don’t really want this post to be about ‘women in country.’ I want this post to be about not being perfect. And letting that imperfection work FOR you. Because I believe it will. If not in a “success” realm, then definitely in a “life” realm, and maybe both.
When I started the blog, I thought a lot about the tension between needing things to look beautiful, and perpetuating an image that is unattainable. It’s a tricky balance because people look at blogs to see beautiful things (the term “aspirational” is used a lot) and you want to give people an inspirational reason to keep coming back. But for me, I also knew that I didn’t want the blog to be a place where people would come and feel more shitty (sorry…I love Jesus, but sometimes I cuss) about themselves. I didn’t want people to come to the blog, and feel worse about their own life because I made them feel like my life was perfect….because my life isn’t perfect, and to make you feel like it is, wouldn’t be good for either of us.
So what if our greatest strength is not in being perfectly awesome, fashionable, smart, talented superguys and supergals, but our greatest strength is being honest. Vulnerable. Because it’s really hard to connect with someone who seems like their whole life is just handled. (Olivia Pope style.) Just going exactly according to plan. I don’t believe we connect to people via our awesomeness, we connect with people via our brokenness. So what if that is our secret super-power?
AND here’s the best part. If we can live like that’s actually true, than we have a little less to be afraid of….because what’s the big deal if we fail a little bit here, or fall down a little bit there? If we re-order the standard away from perfection, then we’re free to experiment: we’re free to mess up. Which means we’re free to risk things in ways we never were before. Have you ever heard someone say (or seen the bumper sticker that reads) “what would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?” Well, I was listening to the ‘Magic Lessons” podcast a few days ago, and it was a conversation between Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Big Magic, and Eat Pray Love) and Brene Brown (author of Daring Greatly, and giver of one of the best TED talks EVER) and they were talking about this quote. And Brene reframed this concept in the best way. She said “what’s worth doing even if I fail?” What if “failing” or the fear of not doing something perfectly lost it’s power. What could we do then? I’ll be honest, I’m in a season where I’m having to make some big, rather intimidating choices. At times I’m afraid I’m “doing it wrong,” but I’m trying to believe there’s no such thing. And I want that for you too.
Perfection. It’s a bird. It’s a plane…it’s make believe.
Just because I’m not Supergirl, doesn’t mean I don’t love a good cape.
Shop the looks from this post here:
I LOVE this cape. It’s dramatic, it’s a little over the top…but it’s black so you can get away with it. Lucie Silvas was wearing this bad boy at a show we both played recently. To die for. Here’s a short one. A pair of great leather pants are an investment, but it’s a really great thing to have in your closet. Here’s a coated denim pair that are great too, and more affordable. I’m experimenting with body chains lately. This one’s on sale. This one is crazy cool. This one is under $10.