Oh the pressures of my first real blog post! It's intimidating, but I'm going with my passion here and starting with one of the major realizations in my life that has allowed me to relax a little more and be a little less intense. No one is perfect. Yes I said it. I'm not a fan of absolute language, but this one is earned. When I say no one, I really mean no one. Humans are flawed. We all have things we can do better. We all make mistakes. We all have regrets. And let me tell you, we all have skeletons in our closets, some just more than others. If anyone tells you they don't have any of these, my guess it they are lying. I'm actually relatively certain they are lying.
I have worked with a lot of perfectionists. Truth be told I am a self proclaimed perfectionist in recovery =). The reality is perfectionism can be very helpful, but too much of anything generally becomes a bad thing and it can get out of hand. Perfectionism is a common trait of successful people, but no matter how successful you are, it does not guarantee happiness. Perfectionism can lead to unwarranted and unnecessary feelings of inadequacy and take people on a wild goose chase of the ever elusive but oh so coveted idea of being perfect. It is truly an endless quest with no foreseeable finish line.
I want to let you in on a little secret, the reality is that perfect does not exist, and can cause a lot of pain in the quest to attain it. Perfectionists tend to be incredibly hard on themselves, harder than anyone else is on them. The self judgement can get really out of hand and lead to feelings of inadequacy, deep unhappiness, low self-esteem and depression. So give yourself one of the best gifts you can and let it go. I realize this may be easier said than done, but learning to let go of the small things and accepting yourself, flaws and all, can be incredibly freeing. It will give you more free time, less worry and likely feel like a heavy weight has been lifted from your shoulders.
If you need permission to let it go, I'm giving it to you. I can't make you any promises, but I am pretty sure you will feel better. Life with less self judgement can be a huge relief! From one perfectionist to another, I sincerely hope this helps you let go of being perfect and refocus your efforts on being happy!