Wow it’s a painful place to be.
And so not necessary.
I love the Dan Millman quote:
“You began life with a natural, complete sense of worth. (Have you ever met an infant with self-worth issues?) But as you grow, you serve as your own judge, deducting points when you misunderstand the nature of living, and learning—when you forget you are a human-in-training and that making mistakes and having slips of integrity and mediocre moments are a part of life, not unforgivable sins.”
I would go further. Not only is being imperfect not an unforgivable sin, it’s vital to living a full, happy, and authentic life.
Often when I ask clients to list their gifts or positive attributes, they struggle or can’t do it. But ask them for self-criticism or the perceived judgments of others and they can give you a page.
From the time you were born, you begin trying to please many masters—parents, teachers, friends, society, God, etc., etc. This would be OK if they were asking the same thing from you, but the message is inconsistent. To please your parents you have to say and be one way. To please your teachers, you have to say and be another. Your friends yet another.
And people still don’t like you and criticize you. You begin to think, “Maybe if I contort myself this way or that way they will love me.” You begin striving to meet this ever-changing target of perfection that will make everyone else happy.
Is it any wonder that you can’t be perfect?
In the process of contorting yourself, you lose Who you are—what you actually enjoy, what you’re good at, what you love.
By trying to be perfect, you may stop at the first hint of criticism. If you do push forward, your self-imposed rigidity my suck all the fun out. Life becomes hard. More often then not, you give up on achieving your goals and do what’s easier–what you know you can do perfectly.
I’m pulling your mask away. I see you and you aren’t perfect. You aren’t hiding the fact that you aren’t perfect from anyone. And you are so loved and worthy just as you are. You don’t need to please anyone else. You don’t need to be anyone else. In fact, the world is hungry for the true you.
I see you for Who you truly are—absolutely and totally perfect in your imperfection.
How do you expect to expand, change, and evolve if you are already perfect? And you can’t help but expand, change, and evolve. It is boxing yourself in and trying to limit yourself to playing in the narrow lines of perfection that is at the heart of your pain and unhappiness.
Growth comes from playing, learning, trying, and being. So relax. Ease up on yourself—and others. Play more. Be willing to learn more. Be willing to try and have the results be less than perfect. Let go of doing more and focus on being more.
Can you feel the relief in that? Can you feel the path to joy in that? Can you see the way to being Who you truly are?
Together we can do it!