The Ruminations Of One Particularly Picky Perfectionist
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

The Ruminations Of One Particularly Picky Perfectionist

Will it ever be enough?

The Ruminations Of One Particularly Picky Perfectionist
Deviant Art

Recently, I came across this quote by Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton, “If you want to be loved, show more of your faults than your virtues”. I’ve spent the better part of a week ruminating on this quote and how it affects my life. This quote struck me as I already feel I am overly candid about my faults in the first place. In fact I would attribute that as my greatest fault: I’m a perfectionist and I find fault in nearly everything. I create extremely high expectations to the point that my goals are unobtainable. I think a good example of this occurred a few weeks ago. While in conversation with my coach, I told her I need to relax more on the field. Specifically, I remarked that I’m not holding myself accountable to having a more lighthearted attitude. She laughed and told me even in that statement she could hear how much pressure I put on myself.

Since at least high school I have been aware that I possessed this fault. I remember a friend of mine telling me I constantly seem to have the weight of the world on my shoulders. I have a great sense of pride that pushes me to strive to be the best at everything. Even publishing these articles for the Odyssey have been a challenge for me as I doubt my own writing skills. Nearly every week after I submit an article I feel a deep sense of agitation because I never am satisfied that my articles are good enough. This same sense of frustrated agitation is a constant in my life as I feel it after every lacrosse practice and after every test I take. It’s not just that my athleticism, or my intelligence, or even my work ethic is not enough but in my essence, Iam not enough. This is how my fault really wounds me the most.

Recently, my sorority got together to do an activity where we stand in a circle and read statements that will impact each individual in an extremely personal way. If the statement applies to any of us, we take a step into the circle for a moment. One phrase read was, “I am proud of myself.” The girl to the left and to the right of me stepped forward but I remained in place. In fact, most of the girls did step into the circle. The thought brought tears to my eyes: Why aren’t I proud of myself? I work hard, get good grades, support my friends and family, and although I do not always succeed in my endeavors, I’ve never failed at the very least to try my best. I am constantly reminded by my parents, my mentors, and those I hold in high esteem that I in fact do make them proud. Each time they impart on me this sacred praise, I hold it fondly with immense gratitude. I’m grateful that they recognize I am working hard but to me, my work is never finished. The perfectionist in me won’t grant the satisfaction of feeling complete. I recognize that this is a terribly stressful way to live. It makes nearly everything I do–my sport, my school work, my job– harder because I often get in my own way. I fear failure in all areas of my life.

In my time spent in reflection, I have also concluded that I need to make peace with my inner perfectionist. I don’t think she’s going anywhere and I wouldn’t want her to since she’s a large part of who I am. But I do think every now and then I need to look myself in the mirror and say, “You are enough. I am proud of you. I love that you work so hard but give yourself a break, girl!” Then maybe one day, I’ll actually start to believe it.

Did it work? Do you love me now?

I guess if I’ve learned anything from this activity, it’s that I shouldn’t really care what you think. No offense, I’m sure you’re a lovely person with very nice opinions but I realize that no amount of outside validation of my hard work or accomplishments will ever make me feel more complete. I will say that sharing my faults with you has been very cathartic for me. There’s just something very liberating that comes from the admission that I’m not actually very perfect at all. I would challenge you to take a moment and meditate on your own faults. What makes them faults? Why are you shy to talk about them? Do they only inhibit or do they also empower you? Can you make peace with these faults? You might be surprised with what you discover about yourself along the way.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

5 Different Religions And Their Unique Christmas Celebrations

From Hanukkah Lights to Nativity Scenes: 5 Faiths' Unique Takes on the Christmas Spirit

Christmas traditions

The Holidays are a time for being with friends and family and celebrating the birth of Christ, but sometimes we forget to acknowledge the other religions and what they celebrate. Some religions like the Islam do not even celebrate Christmas and then you have others, the Buddhists, who use the holiday to practice their religion of spreading peace and goodwill. In no particular order, I would like to demonstrate a little culture about the ways Christmas is celebrated or is not celebrated throughout five different religions.

Keep Reading...Show less

12 Reasons Why I Love Christmas

What's Not To Love? But These Reasons Are Why Christmas Is Best

Young woman with open arms enjoying the snow on a street decorated with Christmas lights.

There are so many reasons why I love the Christmas time! Check out the joy that makes this time of year truly special, from festive traditions to heartwarming moments. Enjoy!

Keep Reading...Show less

A Beginner's Wine Appreciation Course

While I most certainly do not know everything, I feel like I know more than the average 21-year-old about vino, so I wrote this beginner's wine appreciate course to help YOU navigate the wine world and drink like a pro.

White wine being poured into a glass

Keep Reading...Show less
Types of ice cream

Who doesn't love ice cream? People from all over the world enjoy the frozen dessert, but different countries have their own twists on the classic treat.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

100 Reasons to Choose Happiness

Happy Moments to Brighten Your Day!

A man with a white beard and mustache wearing a hat

As any other person on this planet, it sometimes can be hard to find the good in things. However, as I have always tried my hardest to find happiness in any and every moment and just generally always try to find the best in every situation, I have realized that your own happiness is much more important than people often think. Finding the good in any situation can help you to find happiness in some of the simplest and unexpected places.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments