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 like everyone else. I was constantly checking my heels to see the difference between both heels and how they were wearing down and would get annoyed with myself because they weren’t uniform.
When I crayoned out of the lines, I’d throw the colouring sheet I was using in the bin and start again. It’s no excuse but I suppose emotionally I was struggling to come to terms with everything I was dealing with.
The outlines on my handwriting were too small. If I made a mistake I would start again; although luckily that perfection never spilled over into me being the best in and out of school competitively. Being a perfectionist seemed to be centred around my Cerebral Palsy.
Or perhaps it wasn’t so much about perfection for me. I just wanted things to be right. But for those who are chasing perfection all the time can be exhausting. It’s an endless uphill struggle when we try to be the best at everything.
It’s an impossible quest, one that ends with disappointment every time, because no one can expect to continue to be the best all the time. The bar on perfection will always be raised. The boundaries will always be moved; it’s not something that will always be in our grasp.
Being a perfectionist can also be a stressful burden. Having to keep up standards is stressful enough. Being the best at some things is better than being the best at everything. Being the best at everything means we’ll never really enjoy our successes.
Sometimes it’s not always obvious to us that we are perfectionists, but it’s more obvious to everyone else. Letting go of having to be a perfectionist in those areas of my life, finally paved the way and gave me the freedom and peace to choose how I wanted to be in my life.