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  • Writer's pictureAndy Robinson

Transforming "Broken to Beautiful and Stronger"

Photo Credit: Andy Robinson, CRG Leadership Institute LLC

Kintsugi is a form of Japanese art that became popular in the 1400s and survives to this day. As the story goes, a cracked porcelain bowl was sent for repair to Chinese artisans. Instead of restoring the bowl to its original form, the cracks were highlighted and featured using a type of filling made with silver and gold. The cracks remained but were transformed into something truly beautiful and strengthened the original bowl at the same time.

I was visiting my father and stepmother recently and saw a present-day example of this art form which I’ve included at the top of this Newsletter issue. Notice the gold leafing and glue at the base of the chalice which was used to repair and transform the cracks when it was dropped and the base was broken. The core chalice is the same but now artistically improved AND stronger.

We all find ourselves, from time to time, in situations where something in our life is damaged, broken, or fractured — our body, a relationship, our beliefs, etc. By practicing the metaphorical art of Kintsugi, we can utilize those situations to make ourselves stronger, to make life better, and find beauty in the situation by seeking out the good and the learning lesson (which is almost always there if we look hard enough) and applying that knowledge to reconstruct ourselves. We can intentionally transform “the broken” into a stronger, more resilient, and better version of ourselves.

In what area of your life could you practice the art of Kintsugi?

Who in your life might benefit from hearing about this transformative practice and art form?

Special Note:

The idea for this article originated from Ryan Holiday in a recent issue of “The Daily Stoic.” The message struck me and stuck with me right up to seeing the repaired chalice at my Dad’s house recently.

Andy Robinson, Executive Coach



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