I’ve been labeled a “perfectionist” for many years and my ego always found pride in that. That’s until my wise mind reminded me that my perfectionism was simply a manifestation of anxiety…”If I’m perfect I can prevent bad things from happening to me”. It’s control in disguise. My wise mind knows this is completely unrealistic (because life happens no matter how perfect I try to be) and my body knows it’s completely exhausting so I’m embracing my new label of perfectly imperfect and learning to trust that it’s enough. Brene Brown says, “Perfectionism is a twenty-ton shield that we lug around thinking it will protect us, when, in fact, it’s the thing that’s really preventing us from taking flight.”
How to Overcome Perfectionism
- Embrace the fact that mistakes are normal. Breathe into the fear that making a wrong decision will have catastrophic outcomes. “The whole spiritual journey is a continuous act of falling on our faces. And we get up, brush ourselves off and get on with it. If we were perfect, we wouldn’t even go on the journey. We can’t be afraid of making errors.” – Ram Dass
- Practice Self-Compassion. We all know that negative self-talk comes easily. For most perfectionist that’s been our guiding voice for quite some time. The antidote is self-acceptance, self-compassion and gratitude.
Try this: Place your hand on your heart and breathe deeply. Gently say to yourself. It’s okay. I’m okay. I’m enough now and always.
How does perfectionism show up in your life?