Struggling with perfectionism
During So You Think You Can Dance auditions, a 30-something mother of two young kids was asked why she was finally trying out for the show. She told the judges she has “mom confidence” now. She didn’t make it through to the Top 20, but her answer stuck with me because I get it.
As the firstborn child of perfectionist parents, I have struggled with fear of failure and let perfectionism hold back my creative spirit time and time again. I put off hanging pictures on the wall, completing a craft project or even writing a blog post because I’m afraid I won’t do it perfectly.
Becoming a mother has lightened this burden of self-doubt. My two-year-old daughter doesn’t want or need perfection. She doesn’t care if I’m not wearing makeup or if there are dishes in the sink. She loves me just as I am.
My daughter wants my undivided attention, my praise and my enthusiasm every day. She wants me to get on the floor and create with her–to participate in the play that is her “work” right now. She wants me to build, write, draw and take photographs. Sometimes, she wants me to model so she can take photographs, like the one of her little sister and me above (she aims the camera while I push the shutter button).
God loves us as we are right now
I am realizing more and more that God’s love for me is like my toddler’s, times infinity. Our pastor remarked last Sunday, “God loves us as we are right now, not some future version of us.” He told us to stop striving for perfection and start resting in God’s perfect love.
But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 ESV
These freeing words were still in the forefront of my mind when I heard Christian author/blogger Kathi Lipp speak yesterday about her book, The Me Project, at a MOPS event. She told her audience of moms that we need to stop letting “perfectionist procrastination” stand in the way of pursuing our calling. Her advice is to do something every day that moves you closer to your goal.
Do one thing every day that scares you.
Pursuing your dreams
This was just the “kick in the pants” I needed to move forward with my dreams of writing a devotional and starting a faith-based nonprofit for women whose loved ones are affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.
God wants to use me for His glory right now, not when I am wiser, stronger or more organized.
But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV
What goal is perfectionism keeping you from pursuing? Let me know in the comments.