I thought alot today, about how I am going to tackle this problem of self-imposed perfectionism. To bbriefly explain to anyone who might not be quite so familiar with this concept, this is how I would define perfectionism itself. It's like a sense within yourself, that everything you do, everything about yourself, ever single little thing in your life, your world, the person that is you...should be perfect, flawless, impeccable. And for me, it extended to thoughts about my body and personality too.
And so I formulated a little PLAN of sorts, and of course I just had to put it in LIST format (sorryyyyy!!! :o ): and I hope through sharing my advice and thoughts on this, I might help anyone else out there who is struggling with perfectionism - for I know all too well just how intrusive, how harmful it really can be; and how it can essentially infiltrate and contaminate all areas and branches of one's life - and I hope that together, we can all kick this thing's ass. Remember: NOBODY is perfect: no one single person on this earth is without fault or flaw, if you want to call them that. We are not inanimate robots: this is what makes us human. And what of the greatest accomplishments you could ever possibly make would be to recognise your own flaws and imperfections, and learn accept them, and love yourself for who you truly are, as well as recognising the flaws and imperfections of others, too. One of my favourite songs for recovery has to be Natasha Beddingfield's Freckles. It's a moving, heartwarming and beautiful song with a very true and important message.
- Acknowledge the existence, the presence of perfectionism in your life...but then end it there. Just because it is there, doesn't mean it has to affect you in such a harmful and damaging way. Oh here I just have to quote a line from Morokia that I wrote the other week!! Writing this it just fits in so perfectly to what I am trying to talk about...
- So yes, it is there...but the other important thing to remember is, you have to be patient and compassionate with yourself. You do not have to complete the mammoth and nigh on impossible task, of erasing our perfectionism from your life, entirely and wholly, in a matter of days, weeks or even months. These things take time. Be kind and patient with yourself. baby steps is the best way to go here.
- Learn to embrace yourself, for the person that you are. And I know that this is so so hard, but. It is possible!! get a recovery or self-motivation journal. Here is my own one!! ;) (I have many journals... ;) And in it, try writing a few simple little things on a very regular basis, once a day if you can. Such as 2.) three positive things a day. 2.) three good things that you did/achieved today. 3.) three things you are looking forward to, and they can be as simple or as elaborate as you like.
- And in the journal write down the things that you like about yourself, your gifts, your talents, the things you like about personality. And as you write them, it is very likely that you will hear a voice screaming furiously in your head, telling you that everything you write is false and that there is nothing good or positive about yourself...but you just have to tell that voice to F*** off, basically, and continue writing them anyway. Remember: that voice might be there, you can hear it, but that does not mean that you should let it hurt you, control you. influence you. Continue to resist that voice, and it WILL get weaker, and you, stronger.
- And then focus on the things which you enjoy doing or did once enjoy doing, bit now the pleasure you once derived from them has evaporated, because of perfectionism's heartless lies. ut what you just need to do here, is to start doing them, anyway, regardless. Again, start slowly. For me, getting back into Morokia / blogging again was all about taking things slowly and carefully. I told myself: ok, I am NOT going to rush ack into it, and expect myself to get pages upon pages of Morokia written in a day, or a whole long and 100 % perfectly written log post. No...it does NOT work like that. I am going to focus on getting a paragraph written, I am going to sit and blog for half an hour. And to write from my heart, and to enjoy it, and to recognise this, that this is my writing, my blog, and that I do not need to dedicate all my time and energy into making it flawless. It is unique and it is important to me.
- And something which I know might be of some help, is to purposely leave things uncompleted or imperfect. You might find (as I do) that you might spend hours doing something which most people might complete in less then half that time. I did this with Morokia the other week...instead of deliberating for ages about how best to write a sentence, I just let it flow out of me and let the words transcribe themselves in the page, telling myself that I would have time to edit later if I so desired, but for now, perfection did NOT matter.