AVOIDING THE PERFECTIONISM TRAP
I never used to think I was a perfectionist. Until I felt its energies stop me in my tracks. Every time I went to step forward with a particular project, I would allow myself to be trapped by the same sticky thoughts. 'Not yet.' 'Not now.' 'Wait til you're more ready.' All whisperings of an inner perfectionist.
Whether we have perfectionistic tendencies or not, it's not the label that matters as much as the consequences of its energy in terms of the sticky ways it can keep us stuck where we are and prevent us from being willing to step forward.
Imagine for a moment if a butterfly were a perfectionist. Imagine what that would look like... The butterfly would nibble a hole in its cocoon and then peer out its freshly made window and think to itself, 'Oh no, not today, I'm not ready to fly yet.' And then it would stay tightly folded within its comfy familiar cocoon and never take that leap of faith to stretch its wings and move beyond its old cocoon. The butterfly would most likely wither and die within its comfortable nest, never having realised itself to be anything other than a caterpillar that dreamed of flying but was never willing to take the risk to do so.
It can often be our perfectionist energies that cause us to hesitate, to be cautious, to wait until everything is 100% right so we safer in our prospects for success. And yet these same perfectionist energies can cause us to limit ourself as our fear of making a mistake, looking foolish, or getting something wrong can stop us from being willing to take a risk. And yet no butterfly experiences how wonderful it is to fly without first being willing to take the risk that its wings might fail when it takes that initial leap.
As children, none of us ever learned how to walk by being a perfectionist. We all took the risk of falling over every once in a while as we learned how to strengthen our muscles and develop the coordination needed for us to walk and then run, and hop, skip and jump as well. So why, as adults, do we sometimes hold ourself back for fear we might fall over as we take a leap?
In what areas of your life might you currently be holding yourself back? What is it you're waiting for to making everything all right? What are the conditions you might be placing on yourself or your situation that need to be perfectly right before you are willing to step forward and allow yourself to fly? What are you saying 'no' to at the moment because you are frightened you might not be enough?
And how would your life be different if you were to take that next step and simply allow yourself to be as you are? Without caring what others think. Without worrying how you might look. Without needing to ensure everything will be 100% fine.
What if you were to simply recognise that maybe you are in the process of learning how to fly, and that there is more within you that you are yet to fully explore? More authenticity. More leadership. More creativity. More gifts and abilities.
It's in the stepping forward that we learn how to fly. What's one step you could take today to say 'To heck with perfectionism I'm going to allow myself to give it a go and see what flows!'
For me it's getting on with sharing more of my imperfections through articles like this. Spontaneous ramblings that might just resonate with one or two people like yourself and perhaps uplift you in the updraft of my wings :)
What about you? I'd love to hear from you.... and don't be shy... none of us are perfect, right !?! There's always more to be discovered as we allow ourself to shine.
Butterfly kisses to you...
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'Written by healer and author Juliet Martine, www.julietmartine.com'