Perfectionism. Who are you? Where did you come from? Many girls wrestle with perfectionism, a gold standard that shatters our true worth & identity. It’s the state of everything having to be… well… you guessed it. Perfect.
The standard of perfectionism creates this voice of self-criticism that can be so harsh. The state of perfectionism makes us our worst critics. We inflict impossible expectations & unreasonable realities upon ourselves.
Our intrusive thoughts ruminate:
You should’ve proofread that email again (for the 5th time).
You second guess yourself every move you make.
If I don’t ace this test, I am not worthy.
You made a tiny mistake (Your mind races about it for hours, even days).
You must control the situation and people, or else it won’t be good enough.
My makeup & hair must look perfect, or others will think I am unprofessional.
Do any of these thoughts resonate with you? No room for error, and no margin or fault. Perfectionism is brutal. I have witnessed myself struggle with this voice, and I know many other girls do too. We constantly build ourselves to be better, but sometimes shred ourselves into pieces when the slightest thing goes wrong. As I have sat with friends and young girls in ministry, I realize that perfectionism is an inflammation of our hearts and soul, and it does not come from the Lord.
Perfectionism comes from the world. The Fall of Adam and Eve left us living in a world full of brokenness and sin. Nothing is ever going to be perfect. The only thing that is perfect is Jesus. He is the spotless lamb that came to save us from our sins. Mind you, we will keep sinning and messing up. That is what repentance is for, to turn away from our mess-ups. God knows we are not perfect, hence why He sent Jesus to die for our sins.
I say all that to show that perfectionism is something that isn’t from God. Perfectionism is a worldly mindset. God clearly knew we are going to be sinners & that we needed a Savior every single day of our lives. So we can start to shift our mindset that perfectionism isn’t divine, and it destroys who we are. We are ALL messy & broken. Sometimes, perfectionism stems from people pleasing. We are so focused on how others will perceive our looks, our written messages, our tones, and our actions. Sometimes it comes from only finding our identity in achievements and accomplishments, rather than our identity as the Daughter of our Heavenly Father. Perfectionism can come from fear of rejection or fear of failure. Fear can paralyze us from the potential God has in store for us.
No matter where perfection stems from, it has no place to stay in us. We cannot allow perfectionism to live in our hearts rent-free. It does not belong nor has access to our minds. We must fight perfectionism and shut down that inner critic voice that is unwelcome.
At the beginning of this post, I listed examples of the detrimental thoughts of perfectionism.
Here is a list of truths that we can use to combat those thoughts of perfectionism.
I am God’s Child. (John 1:12).
I am loved with everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3)
Your works are wonderful. (Psalm 139:14)
Christ accepts me. (Romans 15:7)
God’s way is perfect. (Psalm 18:30).
Time to cancel our subscription to perfectionism. Let’s wear the armor of scripture and guard our hearts with truth. Jesus is the only perfect man to ever exist. So why are we trying to be perfect? The slightest mix-ups, the messy crumbs, the ‘oopsies’ of our lives should be embraced with gratitude and thankfulness that we serve a Savior who is gracious and forgiving. He cares about the conditions of our hearts, not the awards we achieve. He doesn’t want the perfect presentation, He wants the one who shows up in love & compassion. We simply are called to work hard and not give up (2 Chronicles 15:7). We are called to love one another (John 13:34).
We are not called to be perfect.
So goodbye perfectionism. The gates are up, and only love & truth can enter.
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