Perfectionism is something I deal with a lot...and will continue to deal with for the rest of my life. Quick background, I have something known as "OCD" which is known as obsessive compulsive disorder. This basically creates all types of random, intrusive, and most often times negative obsessions in my mind which then provoke me to perform sometimes "perfectionistic" compulsions like touching a door 5 times, or fixing my hat 3 times or saying something twice out loud to get rid of these negative obsessions. It's annoying to say the least and does cause a great deal of pain..although through my years of therapy, trial and error and self help, I have found techniques to greatly help ease these "perfectionism" symptoms and now want to share some of this insight with you!
WHAT IS PERFECTIONISM?
Perfectionism - "refusal to accept any standard short of perfection." This is literally what the definition of perfectionism is and although it makes sense, there's still one problem....Perfection IS NOT REAL. yup, there is NO such thing as the ""perfect thing" see the "perfect" thing is just an idea because as soon as we think we have grasped perfection of any sort, the standard of perfection then increases. We keep grinding for this perfect thing when really all we're doing is pushing ourselves farther and farther away. Think of it like a dog chasing it's tail, as soon as it gets close, the tail then gets farther away and this vicious cycle continues. So get out of this PSYCHOLOGICAL TRAP!
THEN WHY DO WE AIM FOR PERFECTION SO MUCH?
The sad truth is usually because we are afraid. Afraid that we are not good enough, afraid that our product/clothes/jewlerly/home is not good enough. There is this deep unconscious sense of lack and because of it we feel the only way to get rid of this lack is to attain perfection. See perfectionism is rooted in fear. I say this because to make something "perfect" ironically it usually only makes it worse. Let's use germs as an example, say you're hands had some germs on them, you wash them once and for most people that's enough, but for you it's not.. so you keep washing and washing to attain this "perfection" so now after 10 washes you've really only made your hands worse because now they're bruised/cut up and are NOW MORE SUSCEPTIBLE to germs due to the open sores...of course this was an extreme example, but you can apply this really with anything. If you try TOO HARD to make something perfect it simply ruins it, it takes away any authentic twist you can put on it because of your own neurotic manipulation to "making it perfect."
Let me finish off this article with an ancient Zen story that explains perfectionism beautifully. There was once a king who ruled all of China and he had a garden. This king wanted this garden to be PERFECT as there was an old gardner down the road who was the BEST gardener in all of china and the king wanted to impress him. The king gathertred all his men and ordered them all to clean his garden in hopes to make it spotless and beautiful. After days on end of cleaning the garden, with all trees trimmed perfectly, all rocks placed beautifully, all leaves removed and all flowers snipped clean.. the king then called over the old gardener down the road. Once the old gardener arrived, instantly he was DISGUSTED! He was at a great unease. The king of course was shocked and out raged! "How can you be disgusted? my men worked days on this garden to make it perfect how are you un satisfied!?" Demanded the king. Without saying a word, the gardener then grabbed a pile of dead leaves and THREW them all over the garden completely messing it up! The gardener then said......"Now my king....Now the garden is perfect." And with this the king agreed.
So yes my dear friends reading this article, throw some leaves on your garden, let your hands be "un clean"... for perfection is no such thing and you will burn yourself out trying to attain it. I hope this article was enjoyable and I hope it was of some resource to you guys. If you enjoyed this article and would like to learn more, you can check out my Youtube video down below which goes into greater detail speaking about perfectionism! Thanks for reading, I wish you all the best and Keep Growing!