I’m lucky to know some fucking awesome people.
People who are changing things. Shaping things. Shifting things. Making things. Doing things.
The kind of people who make me feel like I should be doing more, better. The kind of people who make me wonder why what I’m doing isn’t perfect, even after all this time.
But I also know the pressure some of them pile on themselves to be perfect.
They’re driven to succeed, which is awesome, but somewhere along the way that sense of success gets conflated with “perfect”.
And then things change.
The quest for perfection starts. The perfect career. The perfect home. The perfect body. The perfect health regime. The perfect haircut. The perfect sex life. The perfect sense of self.
That gap between where you are and where you think you ought to be is where you inner critic gorges itself on an all-you-can-eat buffet of fear and judgement.
You should be doing more
Why can’t you get this right?
If you were good enough, you’d have this already
See how much better everyone else is?
You’re not good enough
Gotta try harder
Gotta be more perfect
When you’re not working as hard as you can to hold it all together, you’re beating yourself up for not being better and not achieving more.
And the second you achieve something, the goalposts move and your self-worth demands that you gotta get to the next thing.
The chasm between you and perfection is where self-confidence—the sense that you’re enough, no matter what—trips up, slips down, gets stuck and has to cut off its own arm with a pen-knife to crawl its way back to the surface, broken, bloody and beaten.
Pardon me for yelling, but…
PERFECT IS A MIRAGE
YOU’LL NEVER REACH IT
TRY, AND YOU’LL ALWAYS LOSE
So let’s celebrate the incomplete, because you’re incomplete.
Let’s elevate the imperfect, because life is imperfect.
And let’s let go of the “shoulds”, because the only thing you should be is who you already are.
This is, of course, easier said than done.
Sealing up that gap between you and perfection is a process; not a one-time thing.
It’s a process of trust.
Trusting that where you are right now is right where you need to be.
Trusting that your next choice is the best one you can make.
And trusting that you’re already good enough to deal with whatever happens.
Which begs the question…
What would it take for you to let go of the need to be perfect?