In Japan, there is an entire culture built around fine pottery and sculpture. If anyone has ever taken a pottery class, you know just how hard it is to make even the basic ash tray perfectly. The Kintsugi tradition is to fill chips, breaks, and imperfections with gold so they develop an appreciation for flaws and see breakage and repair as part of the history of an object instead of something to disguise.

In our own lives, we need to learn to appreciate and accept our flaws and imperfections as well. We should try to see the hidden value in our imperfections because, not only do they shape us, they also may offer some benefit. For example, maybe you are a shy person. This may seem like an undesirable quality but maybe it allows you to be a better listener. Or, when putting your medical school application together, you might notice some issues. Instead of being embarrassed when the interviewer asks you about the “F” on your transcript, tell them how you learned a valuable lesson from it and are a better student for it.

Embrace your shortcomings and be comfortable with who you are, there can be beauty in flaws!


About the Author

Dr. Andre Pinesett, a Stanford Medical School graduate, is best known by his moniker “The Pre-med Productivity Expert.” ​He is an award-winning educator, highly sought-after speaker, and noted authority on pre-med personal and professional development. He has helped high school, college and graduate students improve their academic performance, while reducing their work time, allowing them to maximize their potential and ultimately achieve their dreams.