sad girl

Shame is the birthplace of perfectionism. In the back of your mind, do you focus on what others think of you? Do you worry how the world might perceive you? If so, you may be a perfectionist, like me. It’s a process of addiction. When I try to get it “perfect,” I never win. That voice, the one that criticizes my every move, is right there on my shoulder reminding me that I could do it better next time. We are convinced that if we work harder, try harder, are the perfect parent, and have the perfect body, we can avoid shame, blame, and criticism. Not true. It keeps us from being seen. It holds us back from being who we want to be.

We must stand in a new perspective so we can change our behavior. To make this shift, we must understand and practice the opposite of perfectionism, which is striving for excellence.

Working hard and striving to be our best self is internally motivated and not externally motivated. As humans, we are made of strength and struggle. We are imperfect. We each have a story. We are enough right now, here in this moment.

I have lived and breathed perfectionism. I believed if I stopped pulling out my lashes and brows that my life would be perfect. I would over-prepare and review things a million times so I would not make a mistake.

Not anymore! I get anxious when I face my perfectionism, so now I pause and ask myself if I am being motivated from the inside out or the outside in? I remind myself that it will not be perfect because it never can be. I will make mistakes, and when I do I know that I may have given someone else in the room permission to fail, and I know that I am not alone.

This practice has opened up so much opportunity for me. I lean into my strengths before the fear arrives, and I play big instead of playing small. And the greatest take away: I have fun. I stay present and away from comparison.

Comparison is the thief of happiness.

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