This part 2 about the "Perfect" problem--what do we do about that voice in our head that constantly nags us about not being good enough, worthy enough--in short--not being perfect.
One answer is to go to the source of the 'problem'--all the way back to the belief that such a thing as perfect even exists.
To do this, let's talk about the Six basic human needs according to Tony Robbins.
One way we can look at ourselves as human beings is that we have certain 'attributes'. Attributes are things like adventurous, timid, outgoing, shy, friendly, loud, persistent, giving, forceful, etc.
All human beings are a collection of different attributes. I may be adventurous, loud, forceful, persistent. You may be soft-spoken, thoughtful, supportive, impatient.
All attributes have their opposite. If I am adventurous, I'm not timid. If I am forceful, I'm not quiet. Graphically, I can illustrate this by putting human attributes on a 'yardstick' with an attribute on one end and its opposite at the other end.
For example, one yardstick we can place all people on is a yardstick that at one end has Adventure/Freedom and the other end Security/Comfort like this:
On this particular yardstick, if I am a 100% Adventure/Freedom type person, I will also be a 0% Security/Comfort person.
You might find me every day on different extreme adventures such as bungee jumping off bridges, skydiving, rock climbing or solo navigating the world in a kayak or balloon.
If, on the other hand, I am a 100% Security/Comfort person, I will also be a 0% Adventure/Freedom person. You might find me every day sitting at home in my plush arm chair with the TV remote in one hand and handfuls of junk food in the other.
Most of us, of course, are not living at the edges of the yardstick but somewhere inside.
We might be a 70% adventure/freedom, 30% security/comfort type person. We might love outdoor adventures, meeting new people, trying new things. At the same time, we also enjoy our 'creature comforts' at times: a good meal, comfortable bed, warm clothing, loving our families.
On the other hand, we might be a 80% security/comfort and 20% adventure/freedom type person. We might enjoy staying home a lot, reading, eating our favorite foods, chatting with friends and loved ones. And we may go out once a week for a 'night on the town' with friends to feed our adventurous side.
In considering this yardstick paradigm, a question that may arise is: Is there somewhere I 'should' be on this yardstick--is there a 'right' way to be?
Maybe I should be right in the middle--50% Adventure/Freedom and 50% Security/Comfort?
If you think that maybe there's a 'right' place to be on this yardstick, consider the following: Who do you think invents new parachutes, surfboards, motorcycles, airplanes and so on--probably someone weighted heavily toward the Adventure/Freedom side of the yardstick.
And who do you think loves (or even invents!) plush beds and armchairs, cozy comforters, home security systems, and the like? Probably someone weighted heavily towards the Security/Comfort side of the yardstick.
Can you imagine what the world would be like if we were all 50/50 human beings?-- Boring!!!
And, probably nothing would ever get done. As soon as our adventurous side comes up with an idea, our comfort side might kick in and decide it's time to get a snack, put our feet up and watch a good movie!
So I suggest that there is NO right place to be on this yardstick--there is only where we are.
Another different Yardstick we could place all people on would have at one end a 100% focus on self and at the other end, 100% focus on others (being of service):
A 100% Focused on Self person might be concerned only with his/her own needs with no concern at all for the welfare of others.
At the other end of the yardstick, a 100% Focused on Others person might be in complete service of others to the complete neglect of their own needs.
Other yardsticks that all human beings could be placed on might include:
Introvert--Extrovert, Thinker--Doer, etc., etc., etc--you get the idea.
So a human being could be seen as a collection of yardsticks where we are at location A on yardstick 1, location B on yardstick 2 and so on.
When you consider the view that there is no right way to be about anything, that there is only where we are at the moment on these various yardsticks, freedom results! There is NOTHING wrong with me being exactly the way I am. There is NO PERFECT way to be. It literally DOES NOT EXIST!
Note that this is completely different from the view that there is some perfect 'out there' and we should just make peace with the fact that we're not there and we'll probably never get there. And maybe God will give us a 'free pass' because, after all, we're 'only human'.
So how does this sit with you? Can you be OK with the idea that there is literally no perfect way you 'should' be?
We'd love to hear from you about this.
Mark and Lynetta
P.S. If you are struggling with the idea that you are supposed to be some particular way, schedule a Discovery Session and we'll look at it together.
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