Chasing the High of Perfect

Seed 1 – Don’t bother doing it if you’re not going to do it properly.

Seed 2 – If you’re not working hard, you’re not working at all.

 I know when these seeds of belief were planted, I have traced it back. I can remember hearing them or thinking them myself around the age of 7 or 8 but maybe they were there before then.

 You see most of your beliefs were planted when you were a young child.

 As children we are little sponges, absorbing all this information and trying to make sense of the world.

As children we don’t understand the whole context behind the conversations we hear and behaviour we see.

We can’t tell if the person is having a bad day, venting or what beliefs they are carrying from their own childhood.

We can’t tell if we are planting weeds or beautiful flowers.

As children we just take the seeds, plant them and keep watering and feeding them throughout our life.

Don’t bother doing it if you’re not going to do it properly.

If you’re not working hard, you’re not working at all.

What did I plant when I held these seeds in my hand?

If it’s not perfect, it is not good enough.

Don’t bother trying if you can’t make it perfect.

If you’re not working yourself to the bone, are you really working?

Achievement and success can only be earned through sacrifice.

These seeds became core beliefs for me and my behaviour reflected them;

  • Seeking perfectionism in everything I did and created.
  • Striving for unattainable and unsustainable expectations for myself and others.
  • Ignoring the call to rest from my body.
  • Living in a space of stress and fear.
  • Prioritizing work over personal life.
  • Pushing myself to overachieve again and again and again.

Now I see perfectionism for what it is – an addictive drug I sought in all areas of my life – perfect skin, perfect job, perfect relationship, perfect family, perfect body, the list goes on.

I see the anxiety and stress it brought to the surface. I see the judgement that I placed on myself and others when the outcomes did not meet the high expectations. I see how the constant messages of perfectionism we are bombarded with on social media, TV, film, media reinforced my beliefs.

Now I choose to see things in a different way. I understand that if everything is in a state of constant change then the parameters of perfection are continually changing. In striving for perfectionism, I was aiming for a moving target, seeking a high I would never attain.

Limiting beliefs are the weeds that drain the energy and life out of the plants and flowers around them. To remove the weeds, we have to do the work to clear them out and then make a commitment to continue to tend to the garden.

What weeds have been planted in your garden?

Why not clear them out and sow some new seeds – seeds of connection, creativity, love, joy, passion, meaning, purpose…anything but perfection.

Need help tending to the garden? Get in touch for 1:1 coaching.

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