As a child, I wanted to be like everyone else who didn’t have cerebral palsy. I wanted to walk properly without a limp, I wanted to walk heel-toe. I was constantly checking my heels to see the difference between them and how they were wearing down and would get annoyed because they were different.
When I crayoned outside the lines, I’d throw the colouring sheet I was using in the bin and start again. The outlines on my handwriting were too small and if I made a mistake I would start again. Luckily that need for perfection never spilled over into anything else.
My being a perfectionist seemed to be centred around my cerebral palsy, not so much around me. But for those who are chasing perfection all the time it can be exhausting. It’s an endless uphill struggle when we’re continually trying to be the best at everything.
It is an impossible quest, one that ends with disappointment every time, because no one can expect to be the best all the time. The bar will always be raised. It’s not something that will always be within our grasp.
Being a perfectionist can also be a stressful burden. Having to keep up standards is stressful enough but being the best at something is better than being the best at everything; because being the best at everything means we’ll be too stressed to really enjoy our success.