|I’ve said it before and I will again: perfectionism is the enemy of a life well lived. In my experience, perfectionism is a foe.|
Perfection is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow…
First of all, the idea of perfection is preposterous as and in itself, because no matter how good we’ll do or be, it will be relatively to standards that have been created arbitrarily and bound to always get pushed further, in a practically never ending frustration.
Perfection breeds intolerance.
Perfection, and the will to attain it, is a sure way to become extremely self-critical and by the same means critical of others.
By leaving no room at all for any variation, any straying or any quirk, it sets the standard so high that it is often a deterrent for many people to even attempt anything, therefore killing their chances to live a vast array of rich experiences.
For those of us who stick with its quest, Perfection will bring frustration, obsessive behavior and worst of all: intolerance.
Perfection is a source of fear.
Even if we were to reach a state of Perfection or feel that we have discovered a form of it, its nature will be sterile… there is no way to go from there, except the fear to lose it.
Excellence on another hand is a beautiful thing because first of all it is a doable goal, and it is real.
Unlike Perfection, which is a cold concept, an idealization, a volatile standard, Excellence is something we develop, and practice, and enjoy while we develop it.Excellence is predictable, it comes with persistence and repetition, without the dread of failure.
Based on practice, it’s a way of life that makes our life better instead of making it a living hell.Excellence is a great way to BE.
It’s a living state, a satisfactory learning curve.
In a nutshell, when I go for Excellence it motivates me, it makes me take action, it stimulates me because I know that if I stick with practice, I will become better and better, and eventually excellent at what I do. It’s a given.
Excellence is more companionable.
People who excel at what they do are usually confident, successful and easy going people. They love sharing their passion, passing on their acquired knowledge and are a great source of inspiration to others.
They treat themselves and others with the understanding that growth is always possible from where we are and that every level of that growth is in itself to be enjoyed.
So in a world that seems to become more and more radical, and divided, I’d rather aim for Excellence, rather than Perfection.
I believe it is a more loving and surer path to success and to making the world better.
To your growth and happiness, always
Crisis is a mistaken gift
When crisis enters our life we tend to cringe and fight and resist rather than understand what it really means and how we will benefit from it.
It is human nature to be afraid of anything that upsets our current equilibrium, and when crisis knocks at our door we are most likely disturbed and distressed by it.
Our brain is a very thrifty apparatus that hates spending energy when it could spare it and any neuronal alteration costs us more energy than keeping old pathways going. So we tend to cling to what has worked so far, what is routine, what is automatic and well known. That is our default setting: we conserve.
When we are challenged by a crisis, we do not see it as beneficial at first!
We shrink in fear, we get anxious, we get angry, we enter the blame game, refusal, denial, thus creating all kinds of aggravation and additional pain and chaos.
We cling to what was and shrink from the discomfort of what is currently happening.
We think crisis is bad. We think there is failure.
That is unfortunate because crisis is just a strong signal to upgrade.
You see, when a crisis occurs, there is no blame to cast, nobody to condemn, no guilt to feel, no wrongness at all.
Crisis simply tells us that the previously working system DOES NOT WORK any more.
It lets us know that we are ready for the next level.
We have outgrown ourselves.
Any crisis, what so ever, is only the signal that a system is outdated.
If you think about your computer you will accept this statement very easily.
The beautiful truth is that it applies to all systems and any crisis!
At a personal level, local level, national, societal, cultural, worldwide, any crisis is the signal that a new system, a new equilibrium, a new paradigm has to be created.
And that is ALL we need to focus on.
Instead of feeling victimized we can opt for innovation.
By doing so, we lower our discomfort and avoid most of the suffering, despair, regret, judgement, etc… that come with resistance and blame.
Of course this is not common thinking and it may feel counter intuitive.
Let’s take a daring step here and consider for a moment that most circumstances are neutral, and that only our attitude toward them makes them calamities or blessings.
Truth is we always have a choice: to resist or to embrace, and that is what creates either pain or ease.
Life is never still and change is rarely linear, hence crisis regularly shows up, as a natural phenomenon inherent to Evolution.
A perfect example that we can all relate to, is how teenagers live in an on-going state of crisis which really makes sense if we realize they are adapting to a new reality, new modalities, new parameters, at a very rapid pace.
They are upgrading to adulthood.
Now take a classic marital crisis… So much pain and drama can be avoided if we accept the simple fact that what ever system had been installed and lived by up to now, is just not adequate any more!
That it is only a case of evolution.
No need for blame. No need for judgement. No need for guilt.
The old set up is obsolete and not serving us well any more: crisis occurs, we need to simply accept it and create a new one, whatever it is.
The size, location, apparent causes or time frame of any crisis is irrelevant.
When we have a health crisis, otherwise called disease, we are facing the need to change our ways, be more body aware, restore better health.
When crisis emerges in a societal organization, we should not waste any energy in trying to patch it up but instead recognize the call to answer a new need.
Similarly, a world wide crisis such as man made ecological disaster, famine or human exodus, reveals the need for radical upgrade of human behavior at a planet level.
By accepting that crisis reveals unavoidable need for growth we can skip getting stuck.
At this point, I’m sure you start to feel a little better about any crisis you may be going through right now, as an individual or as part of a whole massive number of people.
Despite your natural dislike of crisis, you certainly can see its useful nature and shift your mindset about it. If you do, and do it consistently, you will discover that your life becomes infinitely easier and fulfilled through your ability to move toward change willingly, open to the next step, eager for improvement and expecting betterment and growth…
Shifting from crisis to curiosity is invaluable wisdom.
If there is no blame, only genuine interest, we can move forward optimally for ourselves and all others involved and we can INITIATE growth immediately.
When we pull up our sleeves, put on our explorer cap and step bravely into the flow of ever moving forward evolution, we discover that it is easier than we thought to quiet down our innate fear of change.
We reconnect with the joyous curiosity we lived by as a constantly growing child, when exploration was at the core of every day, when new things were exciting and our willingness to experience Life was insatiable.
There is only a small gap from trepidation to excitement and we can bridge that gap with faith.
Faith in our ability to grow, faith in the infinite renewing power of Life itself, faith in the ever present gift of positiveness and most of all, faith in the absolute perfection of this wondrous universe we are part of.
Relax, breathe, be open, be confident.
A few hundreds years ago, we thought the Earth was flat and the sun orbiting around it…
Seems we upgraded to a new paradigm.
It never stops.
To your own upgrade dear one…
Recently, I had a rather deep conversation with a perfect stranger who visited my art gallery and as I reflected on the very essence of what I felt compelled to tell her, I realized that in a few words it was very simple: “Don’t argue with your soul seated truth!”
We are equipped with a constantly working spiritual GPS : our Greater Perception System: it’s called intuition and it is one of the ways our soul let us know what we need to know, regardless of logic, time or space.
Intuition, or instinctive awareness, is always available, though seldom listen to because of its lack of logic and rationality. We like linear, logical, predictable unfolding. We are living in a culture that values cold hard facts and disregards irrational inklings.
When ever our intuition knocks at the door of our conscious mind, we tend to dismiss it quickly. And the more far fetched or disturbing its message, the quicker we override it.
Unfortunately, the most useful messages are also the ones that do not make sense or call for uncomfortable changes.
Getting finely tuned into our inner GPS, that supra human part of us that expresses itself for our greater good by means of hunches, break through ideas, intuitions and gut feelings is not only possible, it is required if we want to allow ourselves to thrive beyond a narrow reality bandwidth.
In her beautiful book “Mind over medicine” Dr Lissa Rankin says that when she asked the question “What Does Your Body Need In Order To Heal?” to her patients, they said things like: “I need to leave my toxic relationship” or “I need to go live in Arizona”. If they did follow their inner compass and heeded their intuition, they got better quickly.
The beautiful truth, the truth that sets up free and flying, is not always convenient, as it rarely fits in our comfortable routine, but it is never misleading.
As humans, we have the ability to make choices every day, every minute of every day, and these choices are the rudder that guides our life to dry dock or to open water. Either way we can, until our last breath, decide to invest our time toward thriving or toward shriveling.
Using our intuition to make these choices is astute and can be honed into a very efficient skill that gets better as we practice it.
Intuition is a highly valuable form of intelligence as it could be compared to downloading directly from the universal, all encompassing, intelligence that animates everything.
We just need to quieten our fears and listen to it, as it is the voice of our deepest desire to grow, to live, to expand and to become.
When we do this, doors open were there seemed to be only walls, miracles occur, wellness comes back and serendipity brings us daily gifts. Reversely, when we let our well organized schedules, habits, circles or society lord over our decisions, we muffle the voice of our unique soul seated truth and it will try to be heard by other means, always louder, up to the dreadful disease or accident… the well named “wake up call”.
Don’t argue with your soul seated truth. Take the gift, as it is one. Listen closely. Make choices that will set you free to fly, even if the price is to relinquish some of your current relations or means of living.
Down the line, the happy, healthy version of you will thank you for it.
Much love to you.