Good evening lovelies.
I want to talk a little about anxiety and perfectionism.
Do you find ever yourself having trouble completing projects or tasks because you feel there is always something you can do to make it better? Do you obsess over perfecting pictures, tweets, or posts before releasing them to the public eye? Do you fixate on things you messed up, no matter how small? Do you have an all-or-nothing mindset? “Well I caved an ate one cookie, I already ruined my diet so I might as well eat the other 4.”
If you can relate to any of these examples, you may be a perfectionist.
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I recently came to the realization that I am a perfectionist.
A lot of times a person’s upbringing can create this perfectionist mindset.
I grew up in a single parent (mother) home, and spent a lot of time with my grandmother. She basically raised me so I felt like I had the balance of two parents. I didn’t feel like I had a bad upbringing.
But then I started digging deeper.
And fortunately, I had the the help of someone very very close to me who helped point out these characteristic’s and opened my eyes.
Our perspective of the world and ourselves is shaped by the small things that are said in the midst of feats and accomplishments in life and as well and struggles and hardships. It may not be a parent’s intent, so I am not blaming them or saying that they are bad people but here is a quick example:
If a child comes home with all Bs on a report card, maybe even a C, there are a couple of routes a response can go. (I mean there are a lot, but this is for a quick example)
Example A. The parent can be completely ecstatic and accept it and make it seem like the best most amazing thing in the world.
Example B. The parent could be happy for you, but slyly throw in that next time you can do even better and get As.
Example C. Or the parent could show complete disappointment that you didn’t get As to begin with.
Now choice C is a little harsh, but still does exists.
I would say my experiences fell along the lines of B.
Which can also be described as perfectionism.
If you are constantly expected and told to fit into a mold of something, when you fail to do so, you start to doubt yourself.
And this isn’t to fault parents who unconsciously do this, with the intention of helping their children be successful and go down the right path, because often times it stems from that.
When that kind of perfectionism mindset develops young, it can be toxic and will grow with you until you change it.
And change is hard. Trusss me, I know.
But below are 5 tips to start your journey..
“Perfectionism is a dangerous state of mind in an imperfect world.” –Robert Hillyer
Remember there is no such thing as perfect
The definition of perfectionism is the refusal to accept any standard short of perfection. There is no such thing as perfect. It is great to want to do things right and do them well, and it is a good thing to want to spend time doing your best on things. But having absolutely no errors or making no mistakes 100% of the time just doesn’t happen, and you will drive yourself insane trying.
Don’t beat yourself up when you make a mistake
Mistakes happen to the best of us and are actually a good thing. It is okay to make a mistake, we all do. And if you do, it doesn’t mean you failed miserably at life and should just give up. If you accidentally do something wrong on a project, or post something with a typo, it will all be okay. Just learn from these mistakes.If you allow yourself, you can learn from your mistakes. They can be the best teacher.
Remove the all-or-nothing mindset
This stems off of number 2. It is to break the rules sometimes and eat that extra cookie. Your body knows what to do if you eat a little more one day. I promise it won’t affect your diet as much as you think. If you’re having a bad hair day, or what you perceive to be a bad hair day, doesn’t mean you look bad or like an orgre that needs to return to it’s swamp. rock that shiz! That messy hair is in style. One of my favorite quotes for when I feel like I’m having a bad hair day or bad skin day goes along the lines of:
“Flour, raw eggs, baking soda and sugar by themselves don’t taste good, but put them altogether and they make a delicious cake.” This is true for people too. Don’t focus on your stretch marks, or acne, or messy hair. You as a package are beautiful the way you are.
Celebrate progress, victory, and failures
This is imperative. Progress is amazing and you should allow yourself to feel good about any and all progress. Celebrating your victories may sound like a given, but how often do you skip this step and move on to the next thing to conquer, before rewarding yourself for your hard work? Treat yourself when you do something great. Get that ice cream that you’ve been putting off, or that sweater that you took a screenshot of, or give yourself a day of rest and relaxation after the grind. Also, celebrate failure. Celebrate the fact that you tried and gave it your all and now don’t have to worry about the what-ifs. Or take what you’ve learned and celebrate that you have one attempt under your best, and try again. It. is. okay. to. fail.
Learn how to love yourself
I know, I know, this is easier said than done. Heck, it’s what this website it made for. But, the first thing you can do is start to change your mindset from negative self talk, to complimenting yourself. The sooner you do that, the sooner you will be on your way to loving yourself. When you truly love yourself, and become your own best friend, you feel feel a powerful sense of liberation and freedom from the constraints of self hate.
Perfectionism can be the greatest thief of joy and biggest source of anxiety. It is curated by a number of factors, but remember, you are in control. While it is good to take time to do your best work, remember there is no such thing as perfect. If you’ve been obsessing over that article you finished four days ago, submit it and go do something you enjoy. Stop staring back at yourself in the mirror, counting your”flaws”. Pick 5 things you love, leave it at that, and go eat a cookie.
When you get rid of the perfectionist mindset, you will get so much more enjoyment and satisfaction out of life.
Until next time.