Have you ever considered how much you’ve lost to perfectionism?
How many times have you quit something all-together because you’d “blown it”? How much overeating has happened because you “ruined your day” by eating something you shouldn’t and so all the rest of your plans went out the window?
How hard on yourself have you been because you didn’t tick ALL the boxes or get one hundred percent?
One of my favorite social media posts this week was from a Facebook friend who posted on January 7 that she had signed up for a challenge to do yoga every day in January and she hadn’t done any yoga yet, AND, she was still all in for the challenge. Perfectionism wasn’t going to sabotage her plans – which were to be devoted to yoga in January – not to being “perfect.”
Overeating is a common symptom of the overwhelm that’s created by perfectionism, and perfectionism can also be a trigger for overeating. Stop the madness!
If you set only one goal this year, may I suggest that it be taming perfectionism?
Taming my perfectionism is an imperfect work in progress. This is true for every high-achiever I know. I fully expect to spend the entirety of 2020 periodically catching myself procrastinating or making something too difficult because of perfectionistic thinking, and gently talking myself back down to reality. That’s okay – after years of practice, I tend to catch myself much sooner, and I’m much more likely to laugh it off when I find myself in the ridiculous web of crazy, perfectionistic expectations.
Will you join me in imperfectly saying no to perfectionism this year?
In case you need them –
Here are nine reasons to give up perfectionism
- Perfectionism prevents us from being our best. Fear of “getting it wrong” or failing makes it harder to take risks or dream big.
- Perfectionism leads to weight gain. I wish we could measure how much overeating happens after someone decides they’ve “blown it” and since everything is “ruined” they might as well throw their plans out the window until they can “start over.”
- Perfectionism stifles growth. One of the best ways to improve and to become more successful is to make mistakes – and learn from them. Perfectionism prevents us from looking for the value in what didn’t work. If you fall off track (or always find yourself falling off track), the most important thing you can do isn’t to just keep starting over, it’s to explore what isn’t working with your strategy so that you can adjust it to work better.
- Perfectionism kills motivation. All-or-nothing, succeed-or-fail approaches make it difficult to see or acknowledge the effort, steps, and milestones you achieve along the way, and this is incredibly unmotivating.
- Perfectionism can intimidate so much that you never get started, procrastinate your next steps, or avoid even thinking about what you want entirely.
- Perfectionism creates a lot of negative self-talk and criticism that erodes your joy and energy and causes unnecessary stress.
- Perfectionism and self-compassion work at cross purposes. Want to build your self-compassion? The first step is respecting the reality that you aren’t perfect – and don’t have to be.
- Perfectionism is impossible. No matter how devoted and disciplined you are, at some point, you won’t be perfect. Wouldn’t it be great to have that reality be included in your plans?
- Maybe the best reason of all: embracing the reality of your imperfect attempts and actions allows for more ease, flexibility, joy, and fun.
I hope you’ll join me in trying our best, messing up, and continuing forward this year!
PS: Do you want a private mentor and coach to help you take the steps you want to take this year? I have several openings for private clients. I work with women all over the world, and believe it or not, we have a lot of fun accomplishing amazing things. The set-up is easy – we connect by phone or Skype on a schedule that works for you. These openings tend to go quickly. If you’d like to explore working together, go here.