Our parents teach us to strive, to be the best.
Is perfectionism an issue for you?
If so, what is one of your strategies for managing it?
Do you give yourself permission to be "good enough?"
Did you grow up believing that accomplishments make up who you are,your worth, your self esteem?
Author and researcher, Brene Brown asks this question to many in her
data collection about perfectionism. She reveals in her book, Daring Greatly,
"I have never heard one person attribute their joy, success, or whole heartedness to being perfect.
In fact, what I have heard over and over throughout the years is one clear message: The most valuable and important things in my life came to me when I cultivated the courage to be vulnerable, imperfect, and self-compassionate."
Perfectionism is not the path that leads us to our sense of purpose; it's the hazardous detour.
Like vulnerability, perfectionism has accumulated around it a considerable mythology.
I think it's helpful to start by looking at what perfectionism isn't.
Perfectionism is not the same thing as striving for excellence.
Perfectionism is not about healthy achievement and growth.
Perfectionism is a defensive move. It is the belief that if we do things perfectly and look perfect, we can minimize or avoid the pain of blame, judgement, and shame. We are then loved if we are perfect.
Perfectionism is a twenty ton shield that we lug around, thinking it will protect us, when in fact it is the thing that is really preventing us from being seen.
Perfectionism is not self improvement.
Perfectionism is, at its core, about trying to earn approval.
Most perfectionists grew up being praised for achievement and performance (grades, manners, rule following, people pleasing, appearance, sports).
Somewhere along the way, they adopted this dangerous and debilitating belief system:
I am what I accomplish and how well I accomplish it.
Please. Perform. Perfect.
Healthy striving is self focused: How can I improve?
Perfectionism is other focused: What will they think?
Perfectionism is a hustle.
The fear of failing, of making mistakes, not meeting people's expectation and being criticized keeps us outside of the arena where healthy competition and striving unfold.
Taken from writing of Dr. Brene Brown, Daring Greatly