Big Idea: Perfectionism is rooted in fear, not the desire to pay attention to details.
According to Brene Brown, “When perfectionism is driving us, shame is riding shotgun and fear is that annoying backseat driver.”
It’s human nature to judge, to classify, to compare. It’s how our brains simplify their work load to use less energy. However, when we compare to ideals in our journey toward perfection, that leads to feelings of inferiority. In the end, we are afraid of what we’ll find on the other side of comparison.
Perfectionism is holding yourself to an outside ideal that can’t ever really exist because the world is constantly changing. Inferiority is the discrepancy between two internal concepts: the ideal self and the real self.
Either way, it’s an emotion that occurs when we hold ourself to a higher (unreachable?) standard. Some people are more susceptible and I believe a lot of it has to do with our upbringing which is based on societal standards.
The trick is to do your best - and that means do your day’s best, not your best best, every day. Then, give yourself grace if the results don’t match whatever standard you expected to meet.
With little kids, everything they do is amazing. What happened as we grew older?
This week, try this: Check out this list of 7 Crucial Things You Can’t Be Afraid to Do and see how you feel. If you are like me, you started hearing that annoying little anti-joy voice in your head getting louder with each one. As Tony Horton, the trainer of P90X, says, “Do you best and forget the rest.”
Quote: "At its root, perfectionism isn't really about a deep love of being meticulous. It's about fear. Fear of making a mistake. Fear of disappointing others. Fear of failure. Fear of success." ~Michael Law
Educator Resource: Art Therapy in the Classroom - 25 Ideas. As an artist myself, I find a lot of therapy in practicing art, and I know that everyone finds it calming no matter what their skill level. I recently witnessed hundreds of teachers making little paintings of snow people, and everyone was fully invested. I firmly believe art should be in school.
Dad Joke: What's the leading cause of dry skin? Towels.
I hope you get pie and avoid the spiders!
SEL Coach Matt Weld creates and delivers in-person and online SEL-related content.