The Beauty, Fashion and Entertainment Industries combined with social media, all seem to have a way of warping the mind in different directions defining in varying ways what the word perfect means.
As the old adage goes: “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” And so is the grey-area’d-aspect of this phrase I like to call perfectionism.
Personally, I’ve struggled with perfectionism my entire life. Growing up in a strict military family, even the order in which I ironed my father’s Air Force shirts had to be in a specific order as not to re-crease the section before or there were dyer consequences.
In an effort to always “fall in line”, I became conditioned to over achieve, unaware that I was acting from the false belief that once whatever task at hand was completed perfectly, then I would be happy, content and accepted.
What a hard truth, as this went hand in hand with me allowing my successes and talents to define who I was, falsely labeling them ‘self esteem’ and ‘worthiness’.
I’ve come a long way since then. I now know this level of attempted perfectionism was (and sometimes still is) actually a form of self sabotage. A trick the ego played to stay alive by seeking validation in the wrong places, avoiding feelings and true connection, ad infinitum.I've learned that perfect does not exist and I am not what I do. Click To Tweet
Self esteem can only be built by doing esteem-able acts. Both towards myself and others. Self care is my go to whenever anything feels off and shakes my peace.
I grow and learn along my heart’s path best by aligning myself with individuals that see, inspire and mirror my thoughts of truth and won’t cosign my ego’s BS.
I recently mentioned my perfectionism in a group setting where it was misconstrued by another to mean that I thought I was perfect, when in reality I meant it from a space of something I was working through. It then proceeded to spread like wildfire down a useless vein of gossip.
I knew she was judging, projecting and perhaps addicted to drama and of course, didn’t respond. Instead I thought to myself ‘if this person only knew my story and how I got to be this way’. I then thought about her story, which I knew very little of, and wondered how often I’d done that very thing to others – judging prior to knowing the 360 of another person and situation. And in this thought found compassion for her.
Which would not have happened if I were activated in my perfectionism. If I expect me to be perfect, I expect you to be perfect too. That’s just how it works in my world. Instead, I let it go knowing it was not mine.
We always see others from where we are, what we need to heal or have already healed and through the events that have shaped us.
We mustn’t be so quick to judge others based on what we think we know about them. Sometimes, over-achievement, perfectionism, judgemental behavior and other acts are really cover ups or coping mechanisms for other things buried beneath the surface.
AND, the survivor in me needs to state that that is not an excuse to continually be the bearer of abuse for such issues in other who are where they are on their path.
We all have our flavor. And the Universe speaks in amazing ways, if we are awake to it.
I’d love to hear about how you’ve overcome perfectionism or any other self sabotaging quality in the comments below!