The Myth of Perfection

As a former perfectionist, I know first-hand how it can rob us of the feeling of accomplishment, because nothing is ever good enough.

As a young mom, I was afraid to have my kids looking shabby, what would people think of me as a mother?  If someone asked me to do something, I’d go over the top to impress them with my capabilities. If you wanted to  come visit me, I had to have my house looking perfect so you wouldn’t think I was a slob. I’d put a smile on my face and pretend my marriage was great, as I was sobbing and lonely on the inside.  Can you relate?

We mistakenly wear perfectionism as a badge of honor.  Our long hours and checking off boxes on our list give us a sense of validation. The busier we are, the harder we push, the worthier we feel. It’s exhausting.

The problem isn’t with wanting to do our best; doing our best and being happy with the outcome is not only healthy, but the way that we achieve our goals. 

It’s when our motivation for pushing so hard comes from seeking external validation, that it becomes a problem.  We feed off of the praise and reactions of others. Our self esteem depends upon it. When this is the goal, nothing is ever going to be good enough. 

Seeking perfection is operating out of fear, -a fear of being human. We are afraid of being seen as flawed, so we make unrealistic demands and become extremely critical of ourselves and others.  

Perfection is a myth.  Perfect only exists in our minds (and heaven), and as long as we always believe something can be better than our best, we will always be disappointed by our results

Are you sad when you look at all of the other “perfect” couples in your life?  You compare your worst with their best. And when your lack of perfection doesn’t measure up, you beat yourself and your partner up, and think everything is wrong… that perhaps you’re not the “perfect ones” for each other.

This kind of thinking will rob you of your joy. It blinds you of the miracles and gifts and the precious time that you could be enjoying together.

My friend, you are enough.  Your value cannot be changed.  It was established at your birth and is your divine right.   You are enough, you have always been enough, and you will always be enough.  Just as a freshly minted $100 bill is worth the same amount as a crumpled $100 bill, there is nothing you can do to change your worth.

Let this truth sink in, consider it carefully and you will feel the reality of it. Let good be the goal and just keep moving forward.  Your best is good enough, and all that is required.  And some days, your best might look like simply getting out of bed and brushing your teeth, and that’s okay!