Is Perfectionism Blocking Your Success?

Are you waiting for the sun, moon and stars to be in perfect alignment before you take a step to do something that you would love to do?

Are you "waiting" to be better off financially before you take a risk?

Do you think that by the time the kids are more grown or you're retired, or more stable, or prettier, or taller you will have figured out what to do with your life?

Maybe you'd like to dance or sing or draw a picture but you don't know how YET, so you feel it's hopeless to begin? After all, what if you didn't do it right the first time? What if you weren't perfect at it without any training or experience?

All these thoughts and behaviors stop passion and success cold!

Are YOU a perfectionist who may be blocking your passion? Here are a few telling questions from my 7 Step Core Essence Coaching Program ™ that may give you some perspective. Do you answer YES to any of the following?

1. Are you critical of yourself or your performance?

2. Do you focus more on what's not working than you do your accomplishments?

3. Are you afraid of making a mistake?

4. Do you find it difficult to make decisions?

5. Do you expect to be good at something with no trial and error?

These are just a few of the questions we ask. YES answers indicate areas of perfectionism. Perfectionism comes from deeply rooted beliefs that we must keep striving for more because, as is, we are not enough. We may have been punished for being wrong or making a mistake earlier in life so now, as adults, we live restricted, fearful lives. Here are some ideas to begin to reverse your thinking:

•Allow yourself to make mistakes. (Thomas Edison tried the light bulb thing 8,000 some times before it worked.)

•Give yourself time. (I was told there is no goal worth having that will not take you a decade to accomplish. Relax. Life takes awhile.)

•Let go of the concept of failure. Expect that a lot of what you try won’t turn out as you expected. But you can learn from everything you do. Successful people really understand this.

•Don't expect to be good at something without a lot of trial and error. Allow yourself the freedom and privilege of being a beginner. It can be fun.

•Try something you'd like to do. Step out of your box. Do something different, even if it's only changing the route to work or the way you hold your toothbrush. It's a signal to your brain you’re ready for new experiences.

In the process of revealing my client Deborah's "Core Essence", she talked to me about her love of water - "swimming, windsurfing, boating - all of it," she said. I asked if she was doing any of those activities in her life, and this banker-Mom had to admit she hadn't done it in years.

Three weeks later she returned with enthusiasm and passion. She was very animated about her newly attended water aerobics class. "I have this gym membership with a pool and thought ‘what the heck, I'll give it a try.’ I did the class and then did laps after. It was exhilarating. I wasn't perfect, but I came out literally bursting with joy."

My final words on this subject are: "Anything worth doing is worth doing badly."

Mary Lyn Miller is an author, speaker and coach who has been helping thousands of people discover and create successful, passionate, profitable lives since 1988. Visit her web site at

Article Source: