Perfection paralysis is the idea that you want something to be so perfect that you don’t even try. I’m sure you’ve been there before. Whether it’s wanting to remodel the bathroom, or submitting a proposal at work, the desire to finish diminishes when the reality of starting beings. We become so fearful of criticism, or imperfection, that we stop trying, or fail to start. This applies to things like writing a book, launching a podcast, or starting your own business. If you want to do something great, but fail to follow through, you might have perfection paralysis.
How do you break through Perfection Paralysis?
Mute the Past
A big part of perfection paralysis is the fear of judgment. It’s disheartening to receive a poor review or hear criticism about something you’re proud of. Because you don’t want to be judged, you may not even attempt that goal. Fear of judgment and being told we aren’t good enough usually stems from childhood. If you had a parent tell you that you weren’t good enough, or you could have done that better, that criticism stays with you into adulthood. Hearing those negative words robs you of your courage. And courage is what gets us through fear and failure.
Now that we know where fear of judgment comes from, we can recognize that it occurred in the past. And that how we were treated in the past doesn’t need to define us now, or in the future. Hearing those comments repeated in your head from your past must stop now. The first step to overcoming this perfection paralysis is to mute those voices. They simply aren’t true. Not then. Not now.
Set a New Goal
The other part of perfection paralysis is the notion that perfection exists at all. We know that we can’t really be perfect at anything or everything, so why do we still try? That goal of perfection was set for you in childhood because you were judged whenever you messed up. Now that you’re an adult, it’s time to set a new goal for yourself. This goal must be objective, and may feel strange at first. Repeat this new goal: “I just need to get it out there so I can fix it later.” The key here is that you’ve spent way too much time worrying about something not being perfect, which led you to not even attempt anything. Now you just need to pick a place and start there. You may stumble. It will not be perfect. But it’s a start. And once you start, you can correct and fix it to get to where you want to be.
No matter what your objective is, you need to start somewhere. You won’t learn anything about how to make it better if you don’t start. It may seem very overwhelming to start a business, write a book, or produce a podcast, but you won’t know where you need to make changes if you don’t have a first attempt. Getting over your fear of judgment occurs quickly if you allow yourself to just start. Allow yourself to stumble, and maybe even fail. You’ve got to pick yourself back up, learn from it, and keep going!
Chalene’s Courageous Confidence Club: www.courageousconfidenceclub.com
This program gives you the tools you need to build confidence in every area of your life. You are supported by a group of people who are going through the program with you and are a sounding board for decisions and opportunities. This program will get you unstuck from your current situation and will teach you the steps needed to get your life in the direction you want!
Let us know how you overcame perfection paralysis in the comments below.