How to Overcome Perfectionism-The Self-Inflicted Mind Dis-ease

 We evolve into who we will be.  As we get older, wiser, more discerning, we change and our preferences shift.  The things that we once desire we desire no more.


 We evolve into who we will be.  As we get older, wiser, more discerning, we change and our preferences shift.  The things that we once desire we desire no more.

 Allow yourself room to grow.  Position yourself for the shift and the changes to come.  According to Merriam Webster, perfection is the condition, state, or quality of being free or as free as possible from all flaws or defects.

Have you stopped laughing yet? 

Can’t believe that this is you?

 Is it possible that where you are right now is your best?


  You Have Not Arrive

How can a five-year-old girl perform the duties at the skill level of a fifteen-year-old teen or that of a twenty-five year old woman?

Not possible.

Stop reaching for perfection.  We are to always strive for excellence but not perfection.  Excellence leaves room for growth and improvement.  It allows an athlete to shave a fraction of a millisecond off their time.  Perfection does not.

If it existed, it would be final and no improvement allowed.  This sounds silly right.


I know this all too well.  I suffered from a bad case of perfectionitis. The thing about it was I did not know I had it.  Everything was cloaked under the “spirit of excellence,” as I dotted my “I’s” and crossed my “t’s” a hundred times, ensuring no room for error.  

I know exactly when perfectionitis invaded my psyche.  It came in as a trusted friend. An overachiever; desiring the best.  If you ever heard me speak, you heard me tell the story of “The Toast.”  This was a life-defining moment for me. 

I can recall the incident as if it was yesterday.  I was around five or six years old when my father, the late Bishop Jesse H. Winley, asked me to make him some toast.  Excited, I zoomed downstairs with glee.  “My dad asked me to make him some toast,” as I pranced around the kitchen, getting the bread out of the breadbox and placing two slices in the toaster.

Up they popped from the toaster and I placed the bread on the counter and commenced to buttering them.  They looked great to me, golden brown and melted butter on top.

Quietly, I walked upstairs and gently knocked on the bedroom door to notify him that I completed his request.  The room was somewhat dark but not dark enough because he noticed that the buttered toast was in my hand and not on a saucer.

The Bishop was HOT!  My father gave me a tongue-lashing, which altered my persona.  He said, “What the devil is wrong with you?  Don’t you know that you are supposed to put the toast on a plate, saucer, napkin, something?  You don’t bring "nobody” toast in your hands.  The devil.”

I was done.  At that point, a knife pierced my soul soooo deep.  I was shattered and I made a vow that as long as I lived, I would NEVER allow anything like this happen to me again.  I will not "be screamed on” because I will know exactly what to do and how to do it.  

I avoided “FAILURE” and/or failing like the plague.

Failing wasn’t an option.  I strove to be the biggest, best, etc. in everything that I did.  When I failed short, guess what happened?  I stepped up and I gave MYSELF the tongue-lashing.  I can recall years ago when I use to call myself stupid for not being able to locate something or not achieved some measure of achievement.

I was my own worst critic.

Nothing I did was ever good enough.  It did not matter what I achieved it was not good enough.  The cycle of self-inflicted verbal abuse and negative thoughts would begin again.  I was supposed to do well.  Hence, why celebrate what you know you were supposed to do anyway?  Right?


Perfectionism turned into an ugly infectious dis-ease of the mind that I could not escape.  Everywhere I turned were the shouts to do it quicker, faster, better, and best.  Here I go again.  Improving again.  Tweaking this, tweaking that.

There was always room to improve and I made it my mission in life to find that place.


  Time TO Get off the Carousel

 Can you relate to this?  Does any of this strike a familiar cord in you?

Do and be the best that you can do right now at this moment.

SILENCE the voice, which keeps telling you to be better.  You are “the better” right now.

According to whom do you need to improve?

To whom are you comparing yourself?

That is the problem.  Stop comparing yourself to someone else.  I remember when I attended Breakthrough to Success with Jack Canfield.  He said,  “Never compare myself to anyone because you will ALWAYS find someone better off which will cause you to put yourself low or someone worse off which will cause you to think more highly of yourself. We are all on a continuum and at different levels in our process.”

 Comparison is the quickest way to immobilize and paralyze you.
  It will keep you stuck and incapacitated.  



Where are you currently expending your time and energy?

That thing that you are working on even now can be improved 100 times over.  That’s not to say that you haven’t done your best.  You have and you know you have, therefore let it go and keep it moving.

Are you ready to get free? 

You have built a prison that you will NEVER get out of

It is beyond a lifelong sentence.  It is like death by 1,000 cuts.  A slow death that you do not even know you are dying.

You are constantly trying to fill a bucket with a gaping hole by trying to put a patch on it.  Running the water faster or running it slower will not keep it from flowing out.

 At some point, you must let it go and get a new one.

Never satisfied or self-assured, you are caught under the spell.

The illusion of perfection is addictive.

It can never be reached.  It is like chasing crack.

You will never get that high again.


Are you ready to walk out of this self-imposed prison?


What Should I do?


Think back to the time, event, or person that drove you to thinking that you were not GOOD ENOUGH.

What caused you to adopt and take on this persona becoming the slave master to perfectionism?

 1.      Accept that perfectionism does not exist.

2.      Recognize that God wants the best for you and has great plans for you.

3.      Perfectionism causes you to superimpose your will over His.  It causes you to deny His Lordship and the power and authority he has given you.

4.      Recognize that there is a difference between failing and failure.  See failing as opportunities to learn and grow.

5.      Acknowledge where you are now and whether things change or not that you are worthy, valuable, and loved.

6.      Accept the fact that there will always be room for improvement.  

7.      Guard your thoughts against feelings of inadequacies and doubts.

8.      Set your intention on one thing you wish to accomplish short term.  I suggest a short-term goal so you can see the results.

9.      Step out and do the thing that you are afraid to do now!

10.  Commit!


There's a time in your life where you're not quite sure where you are. You think everything's perfect, but it's not perfect... Then one day you wake up and you can't quite picture yourself in the situation you're in. But the secret is, if you can picture yourself doing anything in life, you can do it.     Tom DeLonge


Over the holidays, and even during filming, I realized that I actually like my body, even if it's not perfect according to the book. I just feel sexy. For the first time, I don't want to get rid of the curves. I just want to tone it up. My body is comfortable, and it's not unhealthy, so I'm going to rock with it.    Rihanna

Whatever my situation is, I want to show that I'm not perfect, and perfect isn't real. The youth need to know that, especially. Keke Palmer

Maybe you're not perfect, but you're willing to actually look at yourself and take some kind of accountability.  That's a change.  It might not mean that you can turn everything around, but I think there's something incredibly hopeful about that.  Brie Larson