This blog post has been a long time coming and is something I want to share because the perfection trap is something we all fall into. Before starting my business, I prided myself on being a “perfectionist” — on always having things “right” and I had no idea the kind of pressure and damage this was doing. Perfectionism is the road to failure in a lot of ways because it often stops us from trying or from taking risks. But guess what? Perfect doesn’t exist.
You have probably already heard the stats so I won’t repeat them, but women struggle with perfectionism more than men and it is holding them back. You can read more about this here. So, how do we get over this perfectionism hump? How do we start taking risks without underestimating ourselves?
The answer is really simple … just start. But for those of us *cough* me *cough* that might need a little more structure around breaking these perfectionist tendencies, I have you covered. Try incorporating some of these tactics into your week and see how it feels.
5 Ways to Beat Perfectionism
- Write down a time where things went wrong, and I mean really wrong. Then write down what you did to fix that or what the outcome was. I bet you’ll find that it really wasn’t THAT bad or that if it was, you are still here to write about it and learn from it. I recently hosted a free webinar and about 10 minutes before the webinar was set to go live, none of my presentations would load on the platform. This felt like a MAJOR problem but there wasn’t much I could do. 200 people were about to join me live. So instead I did what I could and I shared my screen and toggled back and forth between screens to answer questions as they came up. The webinar ended up being really fun and I received many emails after the fact thanking me for my time and what I shared. Was it perfect? No. Did I think it was way worse than anyone else? Yes. Writing this down and realizing that,” Hey this wasn’t actually the worst thing to ever happen to the world” made it easier to start planning that next webinar.
- Include a typo in your email and don’t correct it. I dare you.
- Ask for cheerleaders, instead of advice. Sometimes when we are starting something new or sharing something that makes us feel a little vulnerable we get knocked down by our trusted friends or family who are trying to give us advice. Next time you want to share an exciting idea with someone (and you don’t want advice) express that and ask them for what you need instead, a cheerleader. Having this little boost and knowing someone else is on your team is one of the best ways to get over that perfectionist hurdle.
- Surround yourself with bad a** women who are succeeding. This can be people you personally know or people you follow on Instagram, podcasts you subscribe to, and the books you read. Because if they can do it, so can you.
- Keep track of your wins! Every time you land a new client or reach a new milestone in your life don’t let it go unnoticed. Write it down, keep a running list on your phone, or create a PowerPoint slide for it. Then the next time you are saying “I’m not sure if I can do x” or “No one will ever want to hire me” you can look at the proof you have that you are successful and you know your sh*t. P.S. if you work a 9-5 and want to get a raise or promotion, keeping a list like this is the best way to show your boss just how valuable you are and why you deserve that promotion.
I hope this list helps you start overcoming that perfectionist habit and just remember to always, always choose progress and growth over perfection.