One of the keys to happiness is the acceptance of and compassion for our imperfections. To be able to embrace sweet human nature and its imperfections is a liberating, relaxed place to be. Being imperfect is filled with creative discovery, oh wait, not only that, but it's actually REQUIRED for creative discovery AND creative progress and getting things DONE. Because, as you know, if we spend all that time trying to be perfect we spin in circles if we move at all, we relentlessly and irrationally judge ourselves when we could be in wonder of our humanity, we erroneously put way too much weight on what others think, and we don't do a thing until we get ALL the cat hair out from under the letter T on our laptop.
Being around perfect people makes me feel like I need to spend more time making sure my eyeliner is straight and I don't even wear eye-liner. It makes me feel like I need to insure that my modifiers don't dangle, my threads don't hang, and my hues don't clash; really unimportant things in the scheme of creative wonder. Think of all the time and energy wasted worrying about what others think - use that energy to enjoy the fun in the process. It's full of happy accidents.
Four Ways to Overcome Immobilizing Perfectionism from Spills
Memorize this quote: "She who hesitates because she feels inferior is being surpassed by she who is busy making mistakes and becoming superior."
Know that lowering your expectations at the beginning of an endeavor or each time you return to it, will actually make it easier and more desirable to engage in it. So give yourself permission to do things badly - have fun with it, practice and then notice that the more you do, the better you just automatically get. The permission gets you started, the practice makes you great.
Break things way down. One of our perfectionistic tendencies is to expect too much too fast - then we get overwhelmed and procrastinate. If you create an intention of doing something for five minutes versus one hour, you will have a quick success that will energize you to want to do more. List all the ways you can break down your tasks - make it fun.
If you hear your ruthless inner-critic ragging on you because you're not perfect, just keep replying, "So what, I'll do it anyway." You will surpass 85% of people who give in to these voices.
Here's a wonderful story that illustrates Spills, the Muse: "The Crack Pot Story"
An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck.
One of the pots had a crack in it, while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.
At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.
For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water.
Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.
But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.
After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream "I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house."
The old woman smiled, "Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?"
"That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them."
"For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house."
Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding.
If you missed any Modern Day Muses from previous issues go to www.2bodyblissmas.citymax.com/paisley.html.
Jill Badonsky trains creativity coaches, runs a creativity club called Body Blissmas and a Happy New Rear - www.2bodyblissmas.com.
Subscribe to her free on-line monthly Muse Letter at www.themuseisin.com. The art you see is from Jill's new book The Awe-manac: A Daily Dose of Wonder which will be released this month and gee, it makes a great Christmas present.