Finding time to get everything accomplished is difficult, and when you add perfectionism to the mix, the difficulty is compounded (and then some).
I struggle with perfectionism myself, and can attest to its challenges. However, I have been able to dramatically reduce the precious moments that I lose to perfectionism. It’s been a heart-based journey getting there, and I’d like to share with you 3 of the keys that I have found most helpful for getting unstuck.
- Open up to YOU: Perfectionism is, at its core, highly self critical. Know that the root of your perfectionism lies, not in the fear that what you produce isn’t good enough; it’s the fear that YOU are not good enough. As you soften your heart to yourself and warmly accept who you are … ALL of you … you will feel your perfectionism starting to melt.
- Let Validations In: While I generally think that self-reference is the way to go, if you struggle with perfectionism, others’ assessments may be much more accurate than your own. Maintain a file of validations, compliments and thank you’s that you have received for things that you have created or accomplished. When you feel yourself doubting your product, pull out this file, read it and really take it in. These positive messages can counteract the fear-based voice that fuels your perfectionism. Work to take this information to heart and over time you will learn to give yourself the positive validations that can help fuel your productivity.
- Let go Joyfully: Think of what you make or produce as a gift being given to a loved one. Let it go with love and joy – and see how different that feels from the fear and trepidation that permeates perfectionism.
BONUS KEY: I recently read a very helpful piece on Freelance Folder by Michael Law titled 5 Tips to Kick the Perfectionist Habit. I was especially taken with his 5th tip – a truly helpful insight to keep in mind:
Tip #5: Embrace the Value of Mistakes
Face it: as much as you’d like to be, you’re not perfect. Mistakes will be made in both your freelance career and life. Instead of fearing mistakes, remind yourself that there’s plenty to learn from them. If nothing else, you’ll learn that a mistake doesn’t mean the end of the world. In fact, it might be the beginning of a new one. Penicillin, pacemakers, microwave ovens, fireworks, and even chocolate chip cookies were created from projects that went awry. You just never know what amazing benefits an imperfect undertaking might yield.
I’d like to suggest that Michael Law’s tips, coupled with my 3 heart-based keys, can get you moving productively and joyfully toward your goals! Beating perfectionism means knowing in your heart of hearts that you are plenty good enough and that what you create and offer to the world from your heart is a gift to be cherished!
And while I’m on the subject of finding time for less perfectionism and more productivity, are you an entrepreneur, consultant, or small business owner who’s ready to take the next big step?
© Copyright 2011 Paula Eder, Ph.D.