When you know yourself you are empowered. When you accept yourself you are invincible.
— TINA LIFFORD
At the Sunday morning meeting yesterday, when we broke up, I chose to sit at the Hope For Today table. The topic of the reading for that morning was perfectionism, and how, despite being gentle with other folk, we can be merciless with ourselves.
As I listened to the other people at the table, I learned something important, something I could so relate to. What we say to ourselves about our imperfection, our blunders, or our stumblings along the way of life is more important to recovery than the imperfection itself. How we get back up, dust ourselves off, and continue on, makes a huge difference.
Raise your hand if any of these statements sound familiar:
“You stupid idiot!”
“How could you have done something that dumb?”
“Well, there you go again…”
“&%$* it! Why even bother at all?”
I’ve said these things to myself, and others. “If you were a real writer, you’d write every day…be published…” and self-defeating statements that I begin to believe because I’ve said them over and over to myself so often. Would I dare say that to a struggling writer friend? Not in a million years. I know what that would do to her spirit. Yet somehow it’s okay for me?
No. And it shouldn’t be for you either, if you want to move forward and beyond perfectionism. Guess what? Everyone has a flaw. If you don’t see it, that just means they cover it up really, really well.
Today, take some time and notice how you talk to yourself. Catch the harshness of your tone, and change it as soon as you recognize it. Pretend you are talking to your very best friend.
You are, you know.