Do you ever get that voice in your head that tells you that you’re not __________ enough? Creative enough, adventurous enough, tall enough, generous enough, outspoken enough, ambitious enough, popular enough, vegetarian enough maybe? Haha. That voice inside our heads is the only thing filling in that sentence. Nothing outside of ourselves sets these standards for perfection, and so we end up being our own biggest bully, with those deficiencies turning us into the opposite of love and into a feeling of lack rather than abundance. The truth is that the cup is always full and all it takes is a look inwards rather than outwards (comparing ourselves to others) and using self compassion as the key to unlock the tight hold that our egos have over us.
Grappling with the need to be perfect – to be put together, successful, achieving big goals and feeling like you’re on top of or above ‘it’, whatever ‘it’ may be, is something that both Amanda and I have certainly encountered as a personal challenge and blessing. I say blessing because this trait allows us to take a closer look at ourselves and making a more observant examination of what our own values are vs. social standards, as well as the need for validation, personal fulfillment and the misconceptions we have about ourselves and learning to love oneself as is, here and now. Perfection is a never-ending race and leaves you in a chronic state of not being fulfilled in the present. The future hasn’t happend yet, the past is already gone, though our minds and hearts tend to travel in both directions. But the present is all we truly have.
Yesterday I (Elena) read a very moving article written by 22-year old Yale graduate that was killed in a car accident. She left this world with some words of wisdom in there that I think you should read. There was one part of it where she talks about perfection (or lack thereof) that will resonate with our inner perfectionist. Here’s an excerpt:
“Of course, there are things we wished we did: our readings, that boy across the hall. We’re our own hardest critics and it’s easy to let ourselves down. Sleeping too late. Procrastinating. Cutting corners. More than once I’ve looked back on my High School self and thought: how did I do that? How did I work so hard? Our private insecurities follow us and will always follow us.
But the thing is, we’re all like that. Nobody wakes up when they want to. Nobody did all of their reading (except maybe the crazy people who win the prizes…) We have these impossibly high standards and we’ll probably never live up to our perfect fantasies of our future selves. But I feel like that’s okay.”
You can read the rest of this awesome article here: The Opposite of Loneliness.
Being perfect isn’t the embodiment of perfection. Embracing the self in the present is, and half empty doesn’t exist.
Ride the wave, love the wave! Namaste <3
- Elena (& on behalf of Amanda) :)