Do you procrastinate? Do you find it difficult to start or complete a project? Maybe you are a frustrated perfectionist. Some people were raised in a home where perfectionism was the ideal to shoot for. In reality, perfectionism can be a road block to accomplishing goals, completing tasks or getting needs met.
Our desire or driving need to be perfect or do a job perfectly can shut down our ability to move forward and leave us feeling unmotivated and paralyzed. It can prevent us from sharing pain with a trusted friend or calling the doctor. If there is not enough time or energy to do a job perfectly, we may feel frustrated and leave the job undone.
There have been many times where I did not even attempt to go after a goal for fear of failing. The thoughts running through my mind sounded like…
“What if I fail?”
“What will people think of me?” or,
“I am a failure.”
The thoughts in my head were blockades to any progress. Perfectionism is often about the need to be acceptable to others. My house is one area where I see my perfectionism creep in. In my head, I compare myself to others and see I am falling short. I think, “my house isn’t as clean as so and so’s.” Currently, I am working towards inviting others to see the real me, flaws and all. If the goal is to look good to others, then the measuring stick is constantly changing. When the goal is to keep working to be better than I was yesterday and do the best I can, then I can be gracious towards myself. When I am gracious towards myself, I am freed up to be gracious towards others.
What thoughts are you having that are blocking your progress? Do you feel stuck and can’t see how to make forward movement in life? What would happen if your goal wasn’t perfection, but progress? What if you pick up that paint brush, call that friend, or apply for that job?
At Second Story we want to help you get unstuck. We can journey with you as you discover the kinds of thinking that is barricading you. I could hesitate to submit this blog, because it isn’t perfect. That’s the point. I am taking a risk and inviting you into my flaws and all. Your story is still being written, let’s journey together!
Sara Hoekstra, MA, LLPC