Black Girl x Perfection Is An Illusion
“Perfectionism is self-abuse of the highest order.”
Anne Wilson Schaef
Hey Black Girl,
Let’s be real. No one has or will ever be perfect and guess what? It’s ok. Your imperfections are what make you ‘you.’ However, I am not saying to be content in your negative flaws and bad habits. You must constantly strive to be the best version of yourself. As a former perfectionist, I understand the struggle. I had been living life like this since I was younger until I realized living to uphold this perfect image is stressful. You may be struggling with perfectionism and you’re not even aware of it.
Here are a few signs you may be a perfectionist:
You set unrealistic expectations - You have extremely high expectations/goals for yourself that are nearly impossible to reach. You will stress yourself to DEATH to get something done.
You procrastinate - It takes longer than it should for you to start something because you wait for the “right” time.
You’re highly critical/judgmental - You’re very hard on yourself as well as others.
You have a strong need of pleasing others - You need validation from others.
You don’t know how to take criticism - You’re easily offended and very defensive when someone gives you constructive criticism. You probably think you’re perfect and you have no flaws.
You rush the process - Self explanatory, enough said.
I am laughing as I type this because perfectionism is something I deeply struggle(d) with. I can relate to every one of these signs and from my experience this is probably the highest form of self-abuse. I stressed myself out so much, had so many sleepless nights and lets not forget health problems - skin breaking out, blood pressure going up, etc. This is not the way you want to live your life!
To be completely honest, it took me 7 months to start this blog when in actuality it should have taken a month to get the page up and running. I procrastinated so much because I was scared of not living up to others expectations. Until one day, I woke up and just went for it. Life taught me three valuable lessons after this procrastination period:
1.) There is no right time, sometimes you just have to go for it.
2.) Stop seeking validation from others.
3.) You can’t rush the end result, you have to enjoy the process.
Here’s a few tips to combat being a perfectionist:
Set realistic expectations - Break down goals into smaller achievable goals. Set SMART goals.
Don’t procrastinate - There is no “right” time, just do it. Don’t let your fear of failure become a roadblock.
Stop being judgmental and critical of yourself as well as others - Stop being hard on yourself and others, everyone makes mistakes.
Stop seeking approval - Don’t seek validation from others, seek from within.
Be receptive to constructive criticism - It will help you to reflect and grow.
Enjoy your journey!
Perfectionism, in theory, is ideal but in the real world not very realistic. Don’t kill yourself trying to make something perfect. Enjoy the process and don’t forget to celebrate your small wins on your way to the top!
With love, Dom
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