Desperately seeking perfection erodes your emotional intelligence
Moreover, the push for perfection is pervasive. The advertising world pushes perfectionism constantly. Why? Feeling flawed and imperfect hurt, promising you perfection sells. Then the motivational speakers help by promising you can do and be anything you want, as long as you want it enough.
As Oprah says, “If I did it anyone can.”
Lies, lies, lies and more lies. Good enough is good enough for most things. Moreover, perfection is generally unobtainable.
Emotional Fitness Training Tips
The following tips will help you defeat perfectionism.
Tip one: Know what matters. All the research agrees with the sages of the ages. Nothing matters more than treating others the way you want to be treated and not hurting others in a way you would find hurtful.
Tip two: Find a philosophy that helps you live with imperfection. I find comfort in Thomas Lewis explanation in his book The Lives of a Cell. He explains that the power of nature’s building block DNA lies in the fact that it mutates. Some mutations bring beauty others deformity.
I am not saying deformity, pain, are good; certainly not for the individual suffering; but individuals are not the center of the universe, we are as a grain of sand under the ocean. All the heroes and heroines of the Old Testament were flawed. Moses had a speech impediment; David was an adulterer, Sarah did not believe.
The Buddhist believe “It is all alright.” That works for me most of the time. Right for the universe, if not for me.
Tip three: Practice forgiveness. That means forgiving yourself your flaws, as well as the flaws of others. That is best done by being kind to the person you want to forgive.
Tip four: Be grateful for all the good you have been given. As the Irish say, “Enough is a feast.” If you can read this you have much to be grateful for.
Tip five: Strengthen your self-soothing skills. You might want to buy my e-Book Self-soothing to Create Calm in Your Life.
Tip six: Be patient; changing habits is not easy. Particularly when so many are trying to get you to do things their way.
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All our exercises are best practiced with full awareness. To become more fully aware, before and after an exercise take a Calming Breath, (Breathe in slowly, hold your breath until some tension builds; then breathe out slowly, smile gently and say a silent “Thank You”).
Thank you for all you do.
Links of Interest
- Emotional Intelligence (en.wikipedia.org)
- The five components of Emotional Intelligence (www.sonoma.edu)
- An Emotional Fitness Program for Parents (amazon.com