Excellence > Perfection

Happy Wednesday friends! This week’s post is going to be short and sweet. I’m talking about perfection and  touching on a few different categories of wellness!

Why write perfectionism in a wellness blog?

I think that being mindful of perfectionism is in line with the “striving for congruent wellness” theme of this blog. Avoiding holding yourself to a standard to perfectionism can be difficult, especially for people who tend to be self-proclaimed perfectionists (me!) but it is an unattainable goal that we shouldn’t hold ourselves to. Perfectionism is unhealthy and eclipses successes you’re making in all areas of wellness.

Serving up Lattes & Words of Wisdom

I started working at a coffee shop this summer and one of my favourite parts are the interactions I have with customers. There are the lovely families with little kids, the regular who never fails to get a soy green tea latte, and the memorable moments. I’m what you might call “hyperbolically enthusiastic” and this is especially true when I’m talking to customers; “Great!” , “Awesome!” , “Perfect!”, are all responses you could hear from me in response to you successfully tapping your credit card on the card reader.

Last week I used the word perfect to describe something along those lines and the customer asked me if I knew what perfect meant. He went on to tell me that there was an important distinction between perfection and excellence, saying that excellence is a level you strive for without being perfect. I smiled and wrote down what he said after he left because it struck a cord with me – and that is that its okay not to aim for perfection. I think I often focus on letting myself off the hook for not being perfect, but what if perfect simply ceased to be the goal?

Well, Well, Wellness

In relational, spiritual, physical, emotional and mental wellness, we’re never going to achieve perfection. And we don’t have to either. When we give ourselves and the people we love the room to be imperfect, relationships flourish. When we stop striving for perfection in our lives we emotionally “give ourselves a break”, and when we realize the only way to have a “perfect” body is to stop eating fun food – it’s clear, for me, to see that chocolate cake is better than abs.

I have a small collection of quotes that jumped out at me when thinking about perfection and what it means and why it’s beautiful to explore alternatives to perfection. Rather than write long paragraphs about why I think it’s wonderful to embrace that we weren’t meant to live perfect lives, I’m going to let these words that inspire me speak for themselves:

  • “You’re imperfect, and you’re wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.” – Brené Brown
  • “The problem [with being a perfectionist] is this : those of us who are never satisfied with our accomplishments secretly believe nobody will love us unless we’re perfect. We don’t think of our flaws as the glue that binds to the people we love, but they are.” – Donald Miller
  • “I will hold myself to a standard of grace not perfection.” – Emily Ley
  • “We need to stop trying to attain perfection because we are good enough already” – Iskra Lawrence

If you need more convincing, take it from my girl Anne Hathaway :

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Here is to an imperfect, but excellent Wednesday!

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