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 Monique Muro from businessandblogfreebies.com ‘s perfectionist story. Over to you Monique!
In what way does perfectionism show up in your life?
Perfectionism shows up in almost all facets of my life. It shows up for me when I get ready to go to work in the morning - is my hair and makeup perfect? It shows up in my to-do lists - did I do everything I planned to do? It shows up in yoga - did I do that pose right? I definitely can sense this subtle perfectionist attitude emerge in me from time to time, in so many situations!
Why do you think perfectionism is such a dream killer?
I think it keeps us stagnant. I think it keeps us from being ourselves, and enjoying the unique talents we can bring to the world. It keeps us from learning from our mistakes and the experience of being human. And it keeps us from having fun, from being playful with our lives and experimenting. We stop thinking outside the big picture, and instead try fitting ourselves into a tiny, tiny box, which sends out a signal to the universe that we’d like to go nowhere else.
How does perfectionism affect your soul and success, both in work and life?
I think perfectionism affects my soul in the sense that, it is a kind of fear. My soul wants to do and be everything, but perfection shows up as my fearful ego and says that I can’t do and be everything unless I do something else first. It says that acceptance, happiness, and love are conditional.
In work, it says I can’t start up a business and be successful because I don’t know enough, my skillset isn’t ‘perfect’. In life, it says I can’t walk out of the house unless I look good, because no one will like me if I don’t look ‘perfect’.
And the best part of it is, ‘perfect’ is something that only we define, and it’s usually something we’re defining out of fear. So to answer your question, I would say perfection definitely shows up in my work and life, but as a fear more than anything else.
What does embracing imperfection mean to you?
I think it means that we do our best to accept our imperfections as they are. That we don’t let them hold us back from creating that next big thing, and we don’t let them take the wheel. We freely admit that done is better than perfect, and we embrace the fact that we are never going to be able to live up to our own, awful standards. We might as well create and have fun with the mess we make! Failures are only experiments, after all. Learn from them and keep going.
What’s the single most important thing about perfectionism that’s holding you back?
I think it allows me to make excuses. I think it allows me to say things like “I can’t do that yet until I know how to do X” or “until I’m popular enough” or “until I’m making enough money”. But the truth is, that just keeps me in a space of never getting anything done.
I’m trying to put out more of an energy of readiness, because that means I’m ready for the next thing that comes, instead of making a habit of telling the Universe “no thanks, I need to do something else first”. Excuses! We are ready now.
Tips and tricks about dealing with perfectionism? Share them!
“They” (whoever they are) don’t see your imperfections as imperfect. Only our eyes see the flaws, and judgement that you think is coming from others is really only coming from yourself. And being done with something, having accomplished it, is way is better than executing something “perfectly”!
Pro tip: remember, what we define as perfect might be imperfect to someone else, so even if we get everything just right, there’s always going to be someone who doesn’t think so, so it’s a lose-lose!
Perfection is only what we believe it to be, it will never be exactly perfect if we all have the freedom of choice and opinion. Perfection doesn’t exist - but YOU do! Be you and do what you want.
Share a favorite quote or mantra that you use to remind yourself that who you are and what you do is good enough?
The first quote that comes to mind is from a lesson in A Course In Miracles. It says “Fear is not justified in any form”. I believe (like Sia) that we have a 1,000 forms of fear. Perfection is just one of them. If we walk around knowing that our insane perfectionism isn’t justified, it speaks to that logical side of us that can really see our fear for what it is - insanity.
Who is this perfectly imperfect, soul-connected creative?
Monique Muro is a hyper-spiritual, sports and fiction lover from Los Angeles. She curates a business and blog freebie newsletter in an attempt to help bloggers and business owners learn as much as possible without paying for expensive online programs, and moonlights as an email automation consultant for bloggers and coaches. Above all, she encourages love over hustle, and being prolific over perfect.
Wendy, again! Phew, that was SO powerful! Thank you, Monique, for sharing your story so courageously. Make sure to show Monique some love in any of the places linked above.
Are you inspired by Monique's story and ready to let go of your perfectionism? Make sure to download my FREE perfectionism-busting workbook. Just click the button below!