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Month: September 2015

When Perfectionism Sends You Running for Cover

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Every year I start of with the idea of following a theme. This year was no different. The theme I picked was Mindfulness. I called it “2015 Mindfulness”. Because, you see, I have picked mindfulness as my theme for the last three years and I wasn’t particularly successful at managing the practice at all. Hence the repeat action.
Practice makes perfect!

Progress over Perfection Click To Tweet

Or I should actually say: Practice makes progress. Has anyone else noticed that the saying has changed over the last few years? I think it is a great idea. I am making progress. And putting that endless amount of pressure on a person to be perfect is just unrealistic. Luckily this is something I have observed about myself long ago: trying to be perfect. Perfectionism follows me around like a little shadow and it creeps up every now and again as a silly reminder that I take myself too seriously and I need to calm down.
Be less anxious. Just do something.
It doesn’t have to be 100%.
It can just be.

Trying to be perfect is something I have dragged with me since childhood. I posed a question in a support group the other day, and asked for advice about something that was bothering me at the time. And out of all the answers the clear intention came out, that I should look to my past for the origin of this current issue. Because what I was dealing with at the moment was just symptoms of a much deeper challenge.

I have forever felt that I am not good enough, or that what I do is not good enough. I have had better times in my life where I have felt good enough as a person, but I guess lately the spiral has been turning back to the feeling of inadequacy. At least I know now that the spiral will turn again and take me to a better, higher place of understanding and acceptance of myself.

www.evolve.co.za spiral-v1

For now, I am off to go listen to some more Power Affirmations on YouTube. I found a good one by David McGraw here.

What do you do when you struggle with perfectionism?

 

2 Comments

Why driving helps you think

Driving helps me to think and may be the key to reducing my stress levels, increase my creativity and possibly even make me more happy. The drive to my daughters’ school is just 15 minutes and even in that small amount of time – my creative juices kick in. The drive acts as a kind of intermission to my morning of studying and the afternoon’s activities that still lie ahead, and I get to practice a little mindfulness.

“Research indicates that the regular practice of mindfulness demonstrates efficacy in treating anxiety and a variety of other psychological conditions.”

As my body focuses on the task, my mind starts to reflect on things more clearly. I suddenly remember things I forgot to do, and I realise that clutter is not only a physical thing, but definitely something that happens in the mind as well. So I use this time to do a bit of mental-organising. Because I can’t write anything down while driving, I have started to use the voice recorder on my phone to record short to-do lists for myself. Until I can get back home and can sit down in front of my computer again to start acting on those ideas.

Here are 3 things that driving has helped me do:

  1. Lessen anxiety. I practice breathing exercises while I drive, or listen to a short guided meditation.
  2. Get my groove on. I have made myself a playlist of inspirational songs that I sing out loud whenever I feel a bit blue and need a good laugh. My singing really is that bad. Not even the shower gets an earful.
  3. Get writing done. Well, actually this is me talking out loud to a recorder, but you get the idea. Focused thoughts, less distractions. I really get things done!

Is there anything you do while driving that helps you? Add you ideas in the comments below.

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