Let’s Redefine Perfection!
In the words of Leonard Cohen, “There is a crack in everything. That is how light gets in”. NOBODY IS PERFECT
There are two basic truths of life we must familiarize ourselves with. We are not perfect and we are not in ultimate control no matter how hard we try or wish it was so. Perfectionism is simply the denial of these truths. I don’t rule out the fact that there are positive sides of perfectionism but the dark sides are rather overwhelming.
Perfectionists are usually miserable, depressed and lonely people. I know that because I was once one. I always aimed for the perfect grades, the perfect results, the perfect look and the perfect body. I just couldn’t bear the thought of being second best. No matter how excellently well I carry out a task nor the amount of thumbs up and approving comments it commands, a single criticism offsets everything. I could not permit myself to make mistakes even the tiniest bit. I was very miserable, highly self-critical and lonely because of my quest for perfection. I needed to be perfect because it made me feel worthy and relevant. Coping with criticism no matter how constructive and immensely helpful they were was difficult for me.
In my thirst for perfection, I raised the bar so unrealistically and impossibly high and expected myself and my relationships to reach it. I ended up always disappointed and it further aggravated my misery and feeling of worthlessness and it damaged my relationships.
The real question is, what does it really mean to be perfect? To be perfect means to be infallible, incapable of making mistakes, faultless and flawless. Does that sound human to you? No wonder it is impossible and unattainable! To be human means to be flawed. Hey listen, to be human means to have imperfections. To be human entails making mistakes and learning from them. So as long as I am human, I can never ever be perfect and I am perfectly okay with that truth. Can you imagine trying to embrace a shadow? No matter how hard you try, the amount of energy you expend nor the effort you exert in trying to accomplish that task, you just can’t! It is not that you are incapable of doing it but because what you what to embrace is non-existent. It is an illusion. That is what perfection is – an illusion.
Perfection is more idealistic than realistic. Come back to planet earth, be real with yourself, start learning yourself, start loving yourself and start living yourself! Everybody has flaws and imperfections. Spend more time in exalting and praising your strengths and uniqueness and less time in magnifying your imperfections because trust me, everybody has it!
So friends, let us redefine perfection…
Good enough is the new perfection.
The new perfection is realistic and individualistic.
The new perfection acknowledge the fact that we are all different and that our differences is what makes us important.
The new perfection allows you to make mistakes and learn because it understands that life is all about living and learning.
The new perfection recognizes our imperfections and flaws and reminds us that everybody has them.
The new perfection rules out unnecessary competition that only makes us more miserable because it lets us know that we are our own competition. The only person you can ever be, even with all your efforts, is YOU
I have embraced the new perfection. I am much happier now. I can listen to others share their success with me without feeling unnecessarily jealous and bitter. I can now shop for clothes that are fitting to my body shape and rock it like a queen. I am perfectly okay being me and I am good enough.
Did you experience a similar struggle with perfectionism? What is your story? Don’t forget, this is a family. We learn from each other and we are growing together.