Thursday, April 2, 2015

The Cost of Perfectionism

There were so many days I was waking up exhausted. That I still wake up exhausted. It was more than a lack of sleep, or jam-packed schedule. I realized it was due to the fact that every detail of my life had become consumed with a need to be perfect.

See, I know that nothing is perfect. The typical phrase “only Jesus is perfect” rings true in my life. However, I have always pursued perfection with a desire to one day get close enough to it. I would describe myself as a passionate person, but sometimes even more than pure passion, it is a need for things to be perfectly orderly in my life.

It was not until I was at the point of exasperation and discontentment that I realized my brokenness. Why was I always dissatisfied with my life and my relationships with people in it? Why did I have such false expectations for myself and others?

Perfectionism is a disease. It controls one’s mind. It attacks your self-esteem. It drives everything you do. It morphs your relationships with others and your relationship with God. I was left wondering how I had even gotten myself into this mess and how I would ever be able to get out of it.

Someone asked me, at what cost are you going to pursue perfectionism? It made me think: am I willing to hurt myself and others, as I let this mindset continue to take over my life?

Sometimes we have to realize we are broken before we can even begin to rebuild our lives. I had not realized how harmful the mindset of perfectionism was in my life.

So I started by saying sorry to my loved ones. I shed quite a few tears. I talked to people. And I am still trying to find ways to heal. It’s a constant surrendering of my mindset to God. A constant cry for Him to shape my thoughts. Lord would you give me the proper view of my worth in your eyes? Will you help me to be compassionate with myself? Will you help me have patience with others? Will you help me to keep my needs and expectations in the proper perspective?

So if you are also a fellow sufferer of perfectionism, let me tell you that I am with you in this dark pit.

I read a quote that struck deep inside of me: “At its root, perfectionism isn’t really about a deep love of being meticulous. It’s about fear. Fear of making a mistake. Fear of disappointing others. Fear of failure. Fear of success.”-Michael Law

My life is filled with fear. I care too much about what others think of me. I’m scared of being considered unsuccessful or not good enough.

So no one might even ever read this blog post, but it is one way I am fighting the idol of people’s opinions. By putting my failures on display and being vulnerable I am forced to not care what others think. It is a scary place. But by being real with my struggles I can show the Lord’s grace and mercy in my life even more!

Ephesians 2:8-9 

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.

Still struggling through perfectionism, but on the road to fighting against this mental disease. 

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