How I stop letting perfectionism hold me back by Ivy Cirillo #perfectionistproblems

Hi friends, Wendy here! Welcome to the #perfectionistproblems interview series. My mission with The Gratefulist is to help creatives let go of their perfectionism and embrace their perfectly imperfect selves.

I’ve personally learned so much from other people's perfectionist stories and that’s why I’m sharing these stories in a weekly interview series on the blog, in the hope of helping you deal with your perfectionism. Reading about personal experiences is a powerful thing and I believe there’s so much you can learn from these stories and insights.

Today, I’m very grateful to share Ivy Cirillo from ‘s perfectionist story. Over to you Ivy!

 How I stop letting perfectionism hold me back by Ivy Cirillo - With the #perfectionistproblems interview series it's my mission to help creatives let go of their perfectionism and embrace their perfectly imperfect selves through sharing real honest stories, insights, and experiences of dealing with perfectionism. Click through to read the entire interview. Plus, there's a free perfectionism-busting workbook!

In what way does perfectionism show up in your life?

Honestly, it shows up everywhere! I am a perfectionist in every sense of the word and sometimes I can’t stand it!


Why do you think perfectionism is such a dream killer?

For me, it’s a dream killer because I’m constantly afraid that my work isn’t good enough. This then translates into me not being good enough. I know to some, this might seem irrational, but it’s true.


How does perfectionism affect your soul and success, both in work and life?

I think perfectionism affects my soul and success greatly. I will always strive for perfection and I will always want to be the best possible version of myself. Unfortunately, I might do this in a way that harms myself; usually in the form of stress.

I try to remind myself that perfection isn’t the goal, but it’s not as easy as you might think! So, I often find myself struggling with failure, which then stresses me out more.

I’ve learned the best way for me to try to counteract this is by giving myself more than enough time to complete a task or goal. That way, I can let it simmer and come back to it without worrying about the additional stress of time constraints.


What does embracing imperfection mean to you?

Embracing imperfection is so incredibly hard for me, but it’s a necessary evil. In doing so, I am able to work towards my goals and move one step closer to my ultimate destiny. Something that I can’t do if I’m constantly double checking my work and reexamining my progress.

And even though I might not like it, I have to learn that it’s ok to turn in something that may be flawed. I mean, every individual is flawed, but it’s the community and support of the flawed individuals that create perfection. That’s why cars have mechanics and books have editors. It’s just something we, I, have to come to terms with.


What’s the single most important thing about perfectionism that’s holding you back?

Flaws. Like most individuals, I don’t like the idea of being flawed, nor do I like the idea of creating something that is flawed. In some way or another, I see flaws as a form of failure and that is one of my biggest fears. For some reason, I can always see the positive in other people’s situations, but not my own. So while I know that flaws don’t mean failure for you, I still end up feeling that way for my own self. Nevertheless, I strive to move past it!


Tips and tricks about dealing with perfectionism? Share them!

Gosh! I wish I had more to offer here! Each passing day is a struggle for me, but I do have a couple of tricks up my sleeve!

1. Just get it done! While working on my own novel, I’ve learned this the hard way. It’s ok to write a first draft that is crap as long as you write the first draft. Then you’re already one step further then you were before! So complete whatever task you face and perfect it later on.

2. Forget the all-or-nothing mindset! I struggle with this one a lot. For example, I struggled with it just a little bit ago. I considered not answering these interview questions tonight because I knew that I should really be in bed. At the same time though, I knew that I might not ever finish it if I didn’t start it now. So even if I didn’t finish the whole thing tonight, it was still better that I made a little bit of progress rather than none at all.


Share a favorite quote or mantra that you use to remind yourself that who you are and what you do is good enough?

“I will hold myself to a standard of grace not perfection.” - Emily Ley


Who is this perfectly imperfect, soul-connected creative?

Ivy is a wife, a creator, and a photographer, but her biggest label? Spoonie. On her blog, Ivy writes about all of the things that she loves, and the things that she does, and how being a spoonie affects those things! She shares her projects, her feelings, and the inspirational women in her life. She believes that she is perfectly ambitious, and she’d love to feature those of you who are as well! Ivy is also a military wife currently living in Alabama. She runs her blog and shop from home and also works on her novels in her spare time.

Website   //   Instagram


Wendy, again! Phew, that was SO powerful! Thank you, Ivy, for sharing your story so courageously. Make sure to show Ivy some love in any of the places linked above.

Are you inspired by Ivy's story and ready to let go of your perfectionism? Make sure to download my FREE perfectionism-busting workbook. Just click the button below!