To me these ancient ruins are perfect; to others, they are just that. Ruins.
My thoughts around “perfect” are permanently on the slide. Trying to satisfy our version is often heartache and a losing game. When I was younger I really did fall into the vicious trap of wanting everything to be just so – my definition and my tension, nobody else’s – yet, extremely demanding. There was no major fallout from my precision and yet in hindsight, I wonder if I could have more wisely spent my time. There were some major pluses, which I acknowledge because a perfectionist can achieve and create much when they set their minds to it. The question comes down to the sum gain set against the pressure we heap on ourselves.
So this is where we talk about balance.
Finding that balance when it comes to perfectionism. My experience tells me the two are contradictory. If you are inclined towards the perfect end of the spectrum then finding balance is a challenge. It’s all or nothing pretty much all of the time.
I prefer to redefine the idea of what is perfect.
To change tack and view life and all it offers through new filters. Look with rose coloured glasses instead of finding flaws is one way and altering expectations is another.
Take for example our homes, the way we style them and what gives us pleasure.
Once upon a time I overran myself striving for the perfect scene 24/7; now I am more relaxed and can appreciate the mess of life has a beauty all of its own. A home with the remnants of wear and tear gives me far greater pleasure than perfectly plumped cushions and a library arranged like military soldiers awaiting parade. If the last six months have taught me anything it is to embrace what we have, where we are and with what and who we can.
The same can be said of us.
Is happiness really greater for those who have perfect bodies and faces? I doubt it and am convinced they would be plagued with the same doubts and insecurities as the rest of us. This is not to be confused as an excuse for laziness and isn’t being the best version of us, everything? The trouble starts when we set impossible and unrealistic goals in the quest for a popular version of perfectionism. Rewarding ourselves in that way is far from perfect.
When we start trying to view with fresh eyes, “perfect” can become a whole new vista. Instead of focusing on the flaws and what is not right with a scene let’s draw our attention to why it is the way it appears. Cherish the life, the activity and the wear and tear of what we see. Imagine why what we see is the way we see it. A wrinkle is no more than years of laughter or a painful reminder to learn from; a dishevelled home may be the remnant of a long and lazy lunch. Unfinished work because it’s “not good enough” is the perfectionist’s curse – it may never be right – the art is in doing our best and creating something tangible. Looking for the perfect whatever-it-is normally ends in nothing at all. Hesitation due to perfectionism is as disadvantageous as insecurity and fear.
There is real beauty in the imperfect and perhaps the secret to “perfectionism” is in the imperfect?
Forget Perfect, I’m Going With Comfortable.
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