Sunday, September 18, 2016

Shifting my relationship with perfectionism (again)

I've talked here before about my ongoing relationship with perfectionism. As an Enneagram One, that personality trait has a strong pull on me. I was surprised to learn that since I've never thought of myself as a perfectionist. Not me with my food spills and ink stains and wrinkled clothes and tattered books. But there are all kinds of perfectionists and the way it shows up most often for me is in not wanting to do things that I can't do well or in having expectations that people around me should do things my way.

While the first keeps me from making a fool of myself, it also kept me from playing with art-making for decades, joy that I'm sorry I lost. And I'm glad I've been able to set that aside, at least in the creative and art realm. The second piece causes me a lot of consternation because of course I can't control what anybody else does. So I've been thinking about both these things, neither of which serve me in a way I want.

And that's what I'm coming to in my relationship with perfectionism. I want it to serve me, not me serving it. I want to be able to use it to do my best, to work hard and be productive, to strive towards better painting and writing and editing skills. I want it to move me forward, not hold me back. I'm not sure yet how to do this, but I'm thinking on it. 

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