Until only a few years ago, I had spent my entire life believing that there was something inherently WRONG with me. I didn’t experience feelings about things like it appeared that other people were feeling. I couldn’t do things right, or the way people expected me to do them. I didn’t really feel like what I was experiencing was at all similar to the normal human experience of growing up. All the feedback I got from others, primarily teachers, made me feel like I was crazy. And I DEFINITELY would never have let anyone know how I felt! (You’ll have to trust me that I could count MILLIONS of examples of that over the years.) I got good grades in school, but not good enough to be the first/best. So perfectionism and mimicking came early and I got very good at predicting what behavior or response would elicit the most positive response instead of what would have been my original, natural response. I would totally beat myself up anytime I didn’t give the “right” answer, or if I wasn’t absolutely certain, I would simply stay silent. But the problem with perfectionism is that you are constantly looking at your faults and trying to hide them or fix them before they get pointed out by others.
Last year, I finally broke free and eliminated “perfectionism” from my lexicon. There is no such thing as perfection; it does not exist in any objective sense. It is impossible to be, or even appear, perfect to others, because every other human has their own idea of what “perfect” should be. The best anyone can actually achieve is “excellence,” not “perfection.” Excellence is the best you can do; it is self-directed. I have now learned how to harness my odd personality traits and STOP FIGHTING AGAINST THEM. I have reframed.
When you feel you are inherently wrong, you do not fit, don’t belong, you are constantly striving, from a position of scarcity, trying to fill a hole in your soul. Except the hole you see is just a mirage, created by your own mind and enhanced/supported by those around you who are all-too-eager to point out how your faults are on display. When you reframe, you choose a different path. You don’t have to be always striving or reaching for something. It is possible to decide you are content with what you have and who you are. Feel the stasis, even momentarily, of just being yourself. You have weaknesses. So does everyone else. But if you squint a bit when you look in the mirror, you can also see strengths. Lo and behold, when you come from a scarcity mindset, you are operating from a position of weakness because THAT’S WHERE YOU’RE SENDING YOUR ENERGY! Energy work is real, y’all. You cannot be a perfectionist with a scarcity mindset and not be constantly focused on your flaws.
But then again, you get to choose where to focus you’re energy. When you decide instead to focus on your strengths, identifying them and arranging your energy focus on them, you will change your life, and other people’s lives with your energy. You will be living in alignment with the universe’s intent for you and you will be free from the external pressure to perform in a perfect way.
This is my wish for everyone. Find your strengths. If all you see are weaknesses, try to look at those through a different lens. Try to find the positive. Something you like. Something you excel at. If this is still difficult or impossible, ask one of your friends to help. There is no doubt they will be less hard on you than you are on yourself. Once you identify your strengths, USE THEM to help others. Teach someone how to do what you do. Make a video or write about it, sharing what you know. No need to brag, just be and do and keep going. You will eventually build a trove of content and/or a handful of followers and/or a collection of art. You will feel better about yourself and about the world you live in and what you have to offer as a gift to that world. There is a reason you are here; you have value, inherently. It is up to you to share it.