Perfectionism and fear
Fears a funny ol’ bitch. Hard to pin down, tough to decipher, almost impossible to detect at times. But nevertheless, she’s always there, tripping you up, making you believe shit that isn’t real. Ah fear, you have your purpose, but more and more I’ve come to realise you’re simply a sheep in wolf’s clothing.
You see, from a young age we’re often taught that we get more love and acceptance if we do the thing better, ace the test, kick the ball higher, get the award, be picked first, be skinnier, prettier, better.
It’s not something that’s a truth. It’s something we feel.
We feel like if we could only do better, try harder, reach our goals faster, we’ll be seen as worthy of the love and acceptance we all deserve. No one tells us this.
We just take it upon ourselves to believe this little lie that ultimately ends up messing with our self esteem and self worth. Over and over again.
Thing is. This level of perfectionism is unattainable. Each time we leap that stream, our interpretation of what we need to do next feels even higher, even bigger.
We put ourselves in a spiral of trying to achieve the impossible, only to warrant the kind of acceptance we crave.
Perfectionism is fear. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of being imperfect, wrong, weak or flawed in some way.
When we are flawed we are unworthy in our own minds. Unworthy of kindness, compassion, love.
And fear comes out in us in all kinds of ways. Anger, frustration, anxiety and finally sadness. It’s all fear. Fear in all its infinite wisdom takes on many forms to trick us into believing we are mad, frustrated and eventually sad. But when you boil it all down…. these emotions are all born out of fear.
And nine times out of ten this fear has its roots in not feeling enough.
Fear > anger > anxiety > sadness > feelings of self worth
If I don’t do the thing perfectly, I am not good enough. If I don’t get the job, make the perfect dinner, lose the weight. I’ve failed. If I come up short, lose my temper, disagree. I’ve let myself down. And, am not worthy, am not entitled to love.
But what if your son or daughter told you that?
What if they told you that if they didn’t ace the test they were unworthy of your love?
What if your partner actually told you that if they didn’t get the pay rise or promotion they were not deserving of your compassion or kindness.
We tell ourselves these untruths thousands of times a day in our own minds. Self talk, over and over again. We don’t even know we are doing it.
And it’s because we want acceptance.
Let me tell you this loud and clear. You’re not the sum total of what you do, what you achieve or how successful you are.
You are not the sum total of anything, other than simply being you.
You are infinitely perfect in all your imperfection. Deserving of love and acceptance, kindness, compassion and care just for being your perfectly flawed and perfectly real human you.
You are enough. Give yourself a break.