What’s the difference between an insecurity and a flaw? I recently went on live with a special guest and discussed the differences between the two and the effects both have on black women. The first issue is really distinguishing the two, what is a flaw and what is an insecurity? Here are my definitions; A flaw is something that is seen as an imperfection by other individuals based on what society deems as perfect. For example, not having straight teeth is a ‘flaw.’ An insecurity is a trait/characteristic you do not like about yourself or are ashamed of. For example, hating the way you smile or just completely hating your smile.
Though I have my definitions I must always refer to the dictionary. According to my good sis Google, a flaw is a mark, fault, or other imperfection that mars a substance or object. An insecurity is uncertainty or anxiety about oneself; lack of confidence.
When I began my self-love journey, I started making a list of things that I did/do not like about myself, things that I was/am insecure about or things that I thought were flaws. The process was raw and brutal because I had to really dive deep and be honest about the things I genuinely hated about myself. I realized I practically hated almost everything about myself, things that made me who I was. I hated my teeth so much so that I was afraid to smile. The crazy part is, my smile has to be one of my best attributes. I was so insecure about my teeth and my smile that I defined it as a flaw but everyone else loved it.
It wasn’t outside people telling me I had a beautiful smile that made me love that physical characteristic, it was me taking the time to discover what made me hate that part of me. It took time for me to realize that my insecurities were based on my need to look like the black women I seen in media. I was thirteen crying because I wanted to look like Tyra Banks, mad because I thought I was too dark, upset because I wasn’t curvaceous, depressed because I believed I wasn’t pretty. When I took away how media and what society defined as a beautiful black woman, I was able to see who I was, embrace that person, nurture her and love her. Insecurities and flaws are important to address because they are the links to trauma, the things you hate or dislike about yourself stems from traumatic experiences.
I encourage all of you to grab your journal, a pen, a glass of wine and make that list and for everything you define as a flaw or insecurity explain why and when you felt that way. This particular list is painful to make because it forces you to be honest, however it is necessary because of the honesty. I am not saying nor am I implying your insecurities will disappear because they won’t we all have them that’s what makes us human, but the love you have for yourself will grow deeper because of the understanding you develop. Try it out and share your results.