Perfectionism is lying to you

Hey guys! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! I have to say, as I sit here tonight I don’t really feel like I have anything fun or special or witty to share. I’ve been staring at the white screen for awhile wondering which direction I wanted to go with my writing. I’ve started and deleted several things already.

When I started this blog, I didn’t know what I would be sharing with you. I didn’t feel like I had any words of wisdom or anything to say, really. And I still somewhat feel that way, although I have enjoyed writing and being able to share stories and experiences with you. My goal for the blog was to just be transparent and write about my journey through life – to use this as an outlet and somewhat as my own journal that I can look back on over time.

But tonight those feelings of having nothing to say have come back. I have no words. Maybe I’m just tired. I spent the weekend at my parents and a trip to south Texas is over 6 hours of driving one way. I made this trip by myself so about 13 hours of total drive time this weekend all alone is no joke. I use audio books and podcasts to keep me company on my drive. This trip I listened to Finish by Jon Acuff. I have read a couple of his previous books-Quitter and Start-and really enjoy his writing. He’s really funny! I knew this one would be good and I was not disappointed.

One day this past week I watched a video that CrossFit published called Death & Diabetes in the City of Angels. Its a 20 minute video talking about the staggering statistics of Type 2 Diabetes in Los Angeles. It was eye opening and heart breaking all at the same time. It really made me start thinking about some of the choices I am making and choices I want to make for my future health. I highly recommend watching the video (click here to watch). One evening I started telling my husband about the video and how we needed to make some major changes. I was ready to go ALL IN!

He didn’t necessarily push back, but he also isn’t an ALL IN kind of guy. He is much more of the mindset of making small changes over time that will add up to making a big impact. Start small and build momentum. I didn’t like this response. I needed him to be serious, to draw a line in the sand with me and get on board. Meat and veggies ONLY, forever and ever, Amen. (You can probably see why he wasn’t on board. Ha!) I walked away frustrated with how the conversation went and devastated I would never be able to get my health in order since he wouldn’t dive in head first with me. So dramatic (and inaccurate), I know.

So I started the book Finish and was only a few minutes into it when it starts talking about perfectionism and the lies that perfectionism tell us. One of the biggest lies is that we must be ALL IN! That if we are not perfect, it isn’t worth doing. You know, there is nothing more frustrating then having a debate with your spouse where you adamantly disagree with their stance, just to hear their stance from someone else’s perspective and it all of a sudden makes perfect sense and you have to swallow your pride and admit that maybe they had a good point. Ugh! I hate when that happens. And with my stubbornness, this seems to happen to me quite a bit. Jon Acuff was saying the exact things my husband was trying to get across to me just a few days before, only his way of saying it didn’t put me on the defensive. It clicked. And yes, I text my husband an apology.

I strive for perfectionism. Its unattainable and I know this. I think I need to do it 100% all the way, or else it isn’t even worth trying. Sometimes I won’t even start something because I know I won’t be able to do it perfectly. Rather than do it at 80%, I don’t do it at all. That leaves me at 0%. How does that even make sense? Maybe you do this too. If so, you know it doesn’t make sense and you know its frustrating. Yet we still do it. Just know I am right there with you. I am going to work on this. I am going to take small steps forward toward my goals and be okay with being imperfect along the way, but still moving forward. I will probably re-listen to the book Finish over and over to make sure the concepts stick. And maybe next time I’ll also take my husband’s advice since he might know what he’s talking about.

What are some goals you quit on once your perfect streak ended? Nutrition is the hardest for me. I have several days where I eat clean and feel great, but then I fall off the wagon. Rather than getting back on track with the very next meal, I will just go off the rails for days at a time, maybe even weeks. Maybe yours is cleaning the house. If you can’t clean the entire house, what’s the point in cleaning only one room? (I might have done this one too!) But the truth is, cleaning one room is better than cleaning no rooms. And eating clean some of the time is better than never eating clean. So listen or read the book Finish. Think about all the things you have started and not finished because you listened to the lies of perfectionism. I’m ready to attack some things. I hope you will join me.

2 Replies to “Perfectionism is lying to you”

  1. Running! My times are much slower than they were 5 years ago, which were much slower than they were when I was in high school. I’ve gone from a good long distance runner to below average, which makes me not want to do it at all.

    • I’m right there with you on the running. I used to be pretty good at it and could run right through shin splints. Apparently, I am not that tough anymore. I’m slower and it feels more difficult and more painful. I avoid it too and opt for a barbell. 🙂

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