Monday, July 13, 2015
Do You Feel Pressured to be Perfect?
In my lifetime, especially as I have gotten older and have more responsibilities, I have felt pressured to be perfect. Not just striving to do my best, but feeling like I have to do or be something to gain someones approval. Have you been there before? Where you feel like if you only did this, or only did that, then, and only then, people would like you. I have also thought that people had to think that I was perfect. That I had to make it seem like I had it all together.
Why do we think that? Maybe it's because we have felt that nobody likes us, or maybe somebody told us that we aren't good enough, so we go to great lengths to make others think that we are perfect.
Recently, I have been reading Love Idol by Jennifer Dukes Lee. Love Idol deals with seeking approval from things lesser than God and trying to make people think that you are perfect. This book has really helped me in the perfection department.
I think that we all deal with perfection at some point in our lives. Maybe you have been struggling for years, or maybe you just started struggling, or maybe you're being set free from perfection's chains. Whatever season you are in right now, I am going to tell you something that dawned on me when I started reading Love Idol. I know you've heard it a million times, but have you really believed it? Here's the truth: nobody is perfect. No one has ever been perfect and no one will ever be. Why are you tiring yourself trying to reach something that is unattainable? It's just plain stupid.
And here's another thing: When you try to make it seem like you are perfect, it ruins the relationships that you already have, and it hinders you from making more. Here's why: no one wants to be near, much less be friends with, someone who is perfect. Now let me make myself clear. It's okay, healthy even, to try and be the best you, but it is not healthy to try and make it look like you've got it altogether. No one wants to feel bad about themselves, and when you make it seem like you are perfect, it makes others feel less than.
Another thing: trying to be perfect is just plain tiring. You not only mess up your relationships and make others feel less than, but you also weary yourself, and you end up feeling like a screw-up yourself because you think that you should be able to attain perfection when it is absolutely impossible.
It is totally futile to try to make people think that you have it all together. It gets you nowhere. It not only ruins you, but also your relationships with people and with God.
What's the cure? Being able to make mistakes and it not kill you. Realizing that everyone makes mistakes and believing, really, truly believing, that nobody is perfect and that perfection is unattainable. Try to give yourself some slack. Don't beat yourself up when you do slip up. God is forgiving and the grace and mercy that He gives is absolutely astounding and beautiful. Ask God to give you strength. After all, He is the strength in our weakness.
I hope that this was of some encouragement to you! Have a happy Monday!