If you’re wondering whether or not you’re a perfectionist, there’s a good chance you are one, at least to a degree. And even if you don’t check all the boxes for a perfectionist, it’s more likely than not that you’ve fallen victim to the all-or-nothing mentality at least once in your life.
The word “perfectionism” is overused and often misunderstood. From my perspective, it’s rooted in a fear of failure and sense of “not enough”. How many of us have felt this at some point?
The truth is though, striving for perfect, only holds you back. It adds unnecessary stress on top of the highly stressful lives we already lead, it stifles creativity, and prevents you from taking risks and trying new things. Ironically, your fear of failure actually makes you fail by missing out on these critical opportunities for growth and learning.
Maybe for you it’s a new website, an email to a new client, or a job interview. Whatever you’ve been putting off, because of your fear of failure, is only preventing you from growing and stepping into an evolved version of yourself.
Fear of all criticism is a paralyzing way to live. Nothing truly new, original, and great can be created without making many mistakes along the way.
As an entrepreneur, I’ve had to learn that perfectionism only holds you back and it’s better to put something out there, fail fast and iterate because ‘done is better than perfect.’
Evolution: the gradual development of something, especially from a simple to a more complex form. What a beautiful thing it is to expand, transform, and grow -- and it’s something I’ve been diving deep into the past few months.
And yes, it can be uncomfortable, and messy, and difficult. Whether it’s in a relationship, the people around you, a career, or anything else, change ultimately helps us get unstuck, connect to our authentic self, and find more direction in life.
So when changes arise (because they will), what if you allowed yourself to explore the natural evolution process? What if you dropped the guilt, the shame, or the anger and just accepted it as a natural part of life instead. What if you actually WELCOMED it?
I recently moved in with my boyfriend and as excited as I am for this new chapter, the experience has been bittersweet. One one hand, I’m starting a new chapter and building a life with someone I love and on the other hand I am leaving behind a life, community and routine I worked hard to build. So it’s okay to feel both excited and sad.
If you’re going through any changes yourself, allow yourself to grieve who you once were while stepping into who you want to be. You can do both. You have full permission to change and evolve while honoring your past. Sit in the uncomfortable feelings and I promise you, you’ll be okay. Keep doing the work. Keep showing up. Keep evolving -
A caterpillar did not become a butterfly without a metamorphosis.
Samara Zelniker is a yogi, wine drinker, pet lover and travel junkie.