So you have admitted that you have problems with being a perfectionist, Congrats! You are on your way to recovering from this crippling way of coping in the world. How do I know about being a perfectionist? Because personally I am a recovering from perfectionism. I come from a long line of perfectionists but I realized that living this way was killing me and constantly making me feel terrible about myself. With practice I have been able to let go of the idea of perfection. After all we are all human which makes us fallible.
By following these 8 steps will be on your way to being free from the chains you have created for yourself!
1. Let go of procrastinating AKA waiting for the perfect time to complete something.
The truth is that there will never be the best time. The best time to complete something is right now. Procrastinating leads to stress, self sabotage and self doubt which makes it more difficult to complete anything. You maybe addicted to the adrenaline that you get from completing the task, but is it really worth it? Procrastination leads to worrry, anxiety and obsession. These are not cute attributes, so why are you signing up for them? Is there something that you have been putting off? Maybe it is time to schedule an appointment with yourself to complete it.
2. Stop People Pleasing
Do you spend most of your days worrying about what others think of you and how you can make their lives better? Do you get agitated when people don’t show up for you in the reciprocal way? Maybe it is time to stop this behavior. People pleasing tends to make one get trapped in a cycle of disappointment. People do not need to be pleased, this is not a way to have a lasting relationship with others, all it does is leave you feeling depleted and resentful. Do things without expectation, do it because you want to and it makes you feel good. Maybe it is time to ask yourself: Why I am doing this? Am I hoping to get a specific response if I do this? If your response to yourself is, YES! It maybe time to think about stopping this behavior, until you can give without expectation.
3. Drop the criticizing of yourself and others
When we make snap judgements of others it usually means that we are difficult on ourselves as well. Initially it may feel good to judge others and raise us up when we are having a hard time. In actuality it just ends up making you feel worse about yourself. We feel good when we relate to others and understand others. Judgement keeps us separate and stuck in the vicious cycle of ego inflation then deflation by comparing and despairing. Just for today try relating to others instead of being critical. In the end it will make you feel more connected and happier.
4. Trying living in the grey
Perfectionist love to categorize things into black an white. There is something that is comforting about having little labels on things and thinking of things as good or bad. In actuality there is nothing about life that is black or white. It is actually in many shades of grey. <strong>The use of black and white thinking is the need for control and a binary for understanding life. Life is very messy and people are made up of good and bad. Every situation is an opportunity for growth. Try embracing what is, instead of needing to put it into a box.
5. Stop taking things personally
We are all trying to do our best in our everyday lives. People are not out to get us, they are sometimes oblivious to others (which I know is annoying). Who is not guilty of being unaware of others at points in their life? You are allowed to express your disappointment and be vulnerable with others if you are willing to take this risk. Instead of taking things personally, try to just see that people make decisions which you are affected by, yet they are not because of you.
6. Accept things as they are instead of wanting them to be different.
When we wish for something else we are crapping on the present moment and stating that we know better of what “should” happen. The universe tested my ability accept life how it was when I was attempting to write this article this morning. My server was down and I had to wait to write my post and talk to the tech guys. I was totally peeved that I had to wait, but it was good for me to learn to accept that this is what was meant to happen. I told myself that it was okay to keep myself care task of going to yoga instead of writing the blog post. And guess what, it still got written. When I let go, I was able to be present.
6.Take criticism in stride.
Not everyone is going to think that you are the bees knees. This is okay. As adults we have to learn to take criticism constructively. It is okay to not be perfect and we are going to make mistakes. Try listening to the words that the person is saying instead of reacting. Remember to breathe and pause when receiving feedback from someone. Feedback and criticism is necessary in our life so that we can learn to grow.
7. Be proud of what you accomplish, instead of see what you have not completed.
Practice celebrating what you have completed instead of talking about what next tasks you have to complete. If you live this way you place yourself on hedonic treadmill where you will never be happy with what you accomplish. You will be looking for the next thing that will make you feel complete. The problem with this thinking is that it keeps you stuck in desiring something outside of yourself help fill the void within you. Remember you are already whole the way that you are. If you don’t celebrate your accomplishments who will?
8. Practice the art of Wabi-Sabi
Wabi-Sabi is is the Japanase art of finding beauty in imperfection. It is learning about the imperfection and impermanence of life. It is learning to accept the natural cycle of growth, decay and death. When a craft person creates a perfect cup they will alter the piece by placing a mark with their finger nail on the rim of the cup to make it wabi-sabi. With the practice of Wabi- Sabi we can find freedom in embracing rust, frayed cloth and the wrinkles in our face by knowing that it is just a part of the cycle of life.
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Top Image: Wabi Sabi by Jinx!
Bottom Image:Wabi Sabi Landscape by ganeshaisis