A Story For Anyone Who’s Not Quite Perfect

If you know someone who is ashamed of his/her own imperfection, send this to them.

The Cracked Pail

A farmer in China had two large pails, each hung on the ends of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pails had a crack in it, while the other pail was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pail arrived only half full.

For a full two years, this went on daily, with the farmer bringing home only one and a half pails full of water. Of course, the perfect pail was proud of its accomplishments, perfect for which it was made for. But the poor cracked pail was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to deliver only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the farmer one day by the stream. “I am ashamed of myself, because this crack on my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.”

The farmer said to the pail, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of the path, but not on the other pail’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, and I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.”

Author: Unknown


Lesson From Yijing (易经) Wisdom


For every situation, there are always 2 sides to everything, just like the 2 sides of the same coin. The bright side and the not-so-bright side.

Given a choice, always look for the brighter side. If you can’t, look harder, it’s always there somewhere. 

Once you find it, flip it to your advantage!

Photo by Dawid Zawiła on Unsplash

As a person, each of us has our own unique flaws as well as strengths. We’re all cracked pails in some ways.

But it’s the cracks and flaws we each have that make us unique and our lives so very interesting and rewarding. We’ve just got to take each person for what they really are, and look for the goodness in them. There’s a lot of good out there still.


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