5.08.2016

The Problem with Perfection, Confessions of a Perfect Perfectionist

ohhhhhhhh - if anyone reads this today I may step on some toes!  I know I'm gonna step on my own and believe me, it's gonna hurt. Jumping right in!

Two kinds of perfectionist I've noticed, the perfectionist of wavering self esteem who is one day full of bravado thinking they are hot, fine, foxy, cool ..you get it, and the next day thinks they are garbage. Then the perfectionist who truly believes their own press and thinks they are awesomeness daily and seldom wavers.  I'm going to address the first because that's where I used to live.

Recently I was contemplating how a skinny little country girl who used to be a warrior of a woman got so damn fat.  I realized there was a moment I had never really addressed or given much thought to and it came flooding back.... In my thirties, I saw my first cellulite.

I used to have pretty nice legs.  Which was good because I have and had a really flat butt.  So it balanced out and I knew, you can't have it all so I was content that at least I had good gams and I enjoyed them like a macho guy enjoys his biceps.  Just being honest.  Sidebar - I think it is good to take pleasure in the beauty of our bodies.  I just don't think we need to get carried away with appearance - just my thoughts.  Balance it with being a good person too. But bodies are beautiful - at least mine used to be, I don't really find it so right now - working on that!

Anyway, when I saw that cellulite the planets shifted and I now realize why. Kimberly the perfectionist could not stand that with all her hard work over the years to stay trim and fit she was still gonna have cellulite - just like everyone else.  The perfectionist in me threw up her hands!  Of course that wasn't the only thing that happened to turn me around but it was the perfectionist in me that gave up.  She threw a hissy fit and stormed off with a bag of Cheetos. Dumb, dumb, dumb. Perfectionism will do that to you, it will lead you down a dark path and turn on you like the vicious creature it is.  This is a cautionary tale, don't trust the perfectionist side of you to sustain you when times get tough.  It will not and can not because it is an illusion of something that is unobtainable!

I used to worry when I went out with my husband if there were women that were prettier than me would he be more attracted to them than me.  I can't even worry about that anymore (not to mention that was a terrible unhealthy burden - because I have learned, yes there will always be those who are prettier, those who aren't and what really matters is just being me.  So being overweight has taught me some life lessons for which I am grateful.) Now I go out and worry that I am going to be the heaviest person in the room.  Oh that is a painful one!  But I'm learning not to go there either.  Just stay in your lane Kimberly, stay in your lane.

Perfectionism is catchy too, like a virus or a fungus.  I used to tell my daughters when they were struggling with some issue they couldn't control that we don't get to be perfect.  I should have applied this advice to me.  Because the problem with perfection is that it will NEVER happen. You will spread your perfection germs to all those around you. No one will escape and in the process, you will rip your heart out trying to be perfect.  You will miss all your blessings, all your most wonderful attributes if your goal is perfection.  You will never be good enough and neither will anyone else.

My second daughter often comes to me to talk out her troubles and one day I realized why she kept having "bad days".  She was setting herself up with all these expectations of what a good day looked like (perfect) and as soon as some little something tipped the scale the wrong way, her day was ruined.  So I challenged her to just have a mediocre day.  We laugh now and it is a very strong, inside joke between two perfectionists as we continue to challenge each other to just have a mediocre day.  Doesn't mean we won't do our best, as perfectionists this is always a given, It just means we let our day off the hook - it doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to be balanced. 

There is gonna be some good and bad.  You may have some great gams but you are gonna have some cellulite, or varicose veins.  You may be fit and trim but you are gonna have an imperfect body, why?  Because we don't get to be perfect. 

I've been out living my life.  Preparing for  the "Women Run/Walk Arkansas" 5k.  I have put 10 weeks in, walked the first 5k of 2016 and met some hard working women that have banded together and I have the privilege to band and bond with them.  I'm not going for perfect.  I'm not worried about cellulite.  I'm working toward being fit and healthy and being proud of myself, by taking pride in my body, taking pride in my mind, being satisfied with I gave it my all and that's good enough for me. 

Screw perfection - I am good enough without it!
Me on the right in the pink...I left it ALL out there!

That's all ~ Thanks y'all!

7 comments:

  1. good on you!!! I'm the first type of perfectionist and it is a detrimental thing.

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    1. Yes! I agree we have to find our balance!

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  2. Love this post. And now I'm going to go out and have a mediocre day!

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    1. What a compliment! Coming from you, someone whose writing I love to follow! Here's to keeping it real and mediocre!

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  3. Such a good post! I'm the first type of perfectionist, and it can kill the spirit and joy in life. I sometimes think that it's hard to be me, but that is a self-absorbed statement...we all suffer and fall short in some way in this life. I'm just another person looking for a way to live that is right with the world and with myself. I will be back to read what you have to say. Thanks.

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    1. ty! It is so hard to find the balance for me! I think writing about it helps me figure it out! Thanks for you kind words!

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  4. Such a good post! I'm the first type of perfectionist, and it can kill the spirit and joy in life. I sometimes think that it's hard to be me, but that is a self-absorbed statement...we all suffer and fall short in some way in this life. I'm just another person looking for a way to live that is right with the world and with myself. I will be back to read what you have to say. Thanks.

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