The Recovering Perfectionist’s Guide to Weight Loss, Getting Stuff Done and Life in General

This perfect picture is the creation of Sarah Hobbs of www.sarah.hobbs.net

“Stop complicating the sh*t out of everything,” he said, matter-of-factly.

“Start at the start, stop when it’s done.”

Not for the first time, my brother’s cut-glass logic nudged me in the butt. It left a bruise.

See, I have this thing.

Relax…it’s not life threatening. It’s pretty common.

There’s a good chance you have it too.

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It’s a nasty little mind-virus. It can steal your energy, rob you of your courage and cause low-grade depression, anxiety and frustration.

Perfectionism is its name. And it is brutal.

I meet countless women who unwittingly prevent themselves from losing weight (or living their life happily) because of this need to “do it perfectly”.

When a perfectionist nibbles one biscuit, the mind-virus takes over, screaming, “You’ve totally blown it now, you may as well scoff the entire packet… eat everything in the pantry, why don’t you….you’re no longer perfect, right?”

Perfectionists tend to analyse, second-guess, and complicate the sh*t out of everything, which results in them forgetting to do the very thing they need to do to lose weight…

…..as in, DO something.

True or true, honey?!

Basically perfectionism is an excuse NOT to take action.

If you’re a perfectionista, you know the heavy truth. Another year passes. You’re still overweight.

From the bottom of my imperfectly-manicured magenta toenails it gives me great pleasure to share with you ….recovery is possible.

Here, take my hand…

Perfectionistas Anonymous

“My name is Avril, I’m a recovering perfectionist…. hello everyone.”

That’s the first step: awareness. Until you acknowledge a behaviour (and it is something you are doing), you can’t treat it. Well done.

And now you’re aware of the sneaky mind-virus you can start treatment.

Prescription for Little Miss Perfects

Replace perfectionism with imperfectionism. That’s it…become a Little Miss Imperfect and make progress your new target. It’ll set you free.

“How can something as simple as focusing on progress make a difference?” says the (former) perfectionist in you.

See.

There you go complicating the sh*t out of everything, again.

Stop it, sister!!!

Remember your new focus is progress. You’re Miss Imperfect, and proud of it.

Progress is tangible. It’s about being the best version of you. It means always looking for the next stretch or improvement. It’s about moving closer to your target one step at a time.

Six Unexpected Benefits of Becoming Little Miss Imperfect

– You finally see your inner critic (ego voice) for what it is…. your very own success prevention expert. Ouch.

– You lower the bar. You start to create in the moment, without any judgement. Fun, freedom and joy is allowed and you actually end up doing a fabulous job. How ironic.

– You focus your attention on the process itself. You quit obsessing about the outcome. Paradoxically, you increase your chance of success because you stay in the game.

– You get things done imperfectly. You tweak and fix and repeat. You become unstoppable.

– You finally understand there are no mistakes. Feedback is what it’s all about, baby.

– Yes, you do master your craft. You do achieve your weight loss goals. Because you gave yourself room to practice, you’re learning and growing, and you’re still taking action.

You’re moving closer to your weight goal because you aren’t over-complicating the sh*t out of everything. You’re being the best version of you.

Imperfect love, etc, Avril

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2 Responses to The Recovering Perfectionist’s Guide to Weight Loss, Getting Stuff Done and Life in General

  1. Ling Tsoy says:

    Avril!

    I LOVED this post. I absolutely agree that perfectionism is just an excuse not to move forward. Fear of failure can put on hold YEARS of your life and mounting indecisiveness if you let it overtake you. We demand so much out of things (technology, gadgets, entertainment, education, etc) it’s no wonder that attitude is turned inwards on ourselves! I think taking a step back and realising how much we take for granted and how we take ourselves for granted might help ease us up and then maybe we can start to enjoy what changes we try to make in our worlds, big or small steps, one at a time. I think your brother put it in the best terms to sum up! :) x0x0

    • Avril says:

      Ling! I’m thrilled you found value in it. The common element with perfectionists is when you ask them, “so what is your goal, or what does perfection mean to you?” they cannot put words around it. It’s like they’ve no measure for this “thing” they’re chasing anyway, so it’s unobtainable. Whereas when you just keep taking actions steps, it’s amazing how a plan comes together. The bro is right, keep it simple!!! :) xoxo

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