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A Recovering Perfectionist... Under Construction 🚧

Updated: Apr 13, 2023

This month, members of the latest Reclaiming group are working on how to identify and heal the cycle of perfectionism. So I thought I’d share a little about my own journey with this - because I too am a work in progress. #underconstruction

First off - any perfectionists out there??

If you’re in the Ouroboros Healing community chances are you are. This community is FULL of amazing mujeres who aim high, overachieve, and carry the expectations and dreams of their ancestors on their shoulders...or is that just me?? 🧐

A little known fact...perfectionism is actually a trauma response! It's one way we meet our need for validation, approval, and our sense of worthiness.

As a recovering perfectionist - it’s important for me to constantly monitor my intentions and motivation for doing something, especially within the container of this beautiful business I have the privilege of co-creating.

For me, perfectionism shows up in the most insidious ways.

For example, I’ve been hosting a bi-weekly IG Live series called “Small Flowness Saturday.” It was intended to build community, share resources and swap war stories with other soulpreneurs trying to stay in flow while they show up as the boss lady and jefe in their full power, and do alllll the things to nurture their soulful callings and community. It was also a great way to connect with folx LIVE.

However, the motivation to continue doing it began to shift…

However, my perfectionist thinking didn't allow me the space to check in with my initial motivation. It just wanted to take over and be all negative nancy on me.

Over the years I've learned the underlying motivation that drives my perfectionism is: I’m not allowed to “fail”.

This negative belief system has clouded my judgment on many occasions, but since I’ve learned to befriend my perfectionism, I notice pretty quickly now when it begins to rear its annoying, scrappy little head.🤨

This old negative belief system was creating internal conflict. It became more about why “I can’t or shouldn't stop” than the initial intention behind starting it in the first place: educating my community. I truly felt like I was failing you all if I stopped it! Quitting, stopping, or "giving up” was something I associated with FAILURE for so long!

Because of this, most of my work around perfectionism has been about re-evaluating my perception of failure. I’m now able to look back at previous “failures” and see them as lessons, trial periods…. opportunities for growth as people love to say (eyeroll) 🙃. I’ve come to accept that nothing is really actually a true failure because we undoubtedly gain some experience from it...and those experiences inform our future strategies, decisions, and outcomes.

So here’s a breakdown of how perfectionism tried to cloud my judgment around the decision to keep or say good bye to Small Flowness Saturday:

  • Since I SAID I was going to do it - that meant I HAD to keep doing it!

  • I forgot that everything in business deserves a “trial period” and needs time to be re-evaluated!

  • I forgot this is my business and I’m allowed to switch gears if I want to!

  • I forgot that nothing is permanent!

  • As the voice of my perfectionism grew louder it got more difficult to connect with my intuition and really connect to the root of my resistance.

It’s wild to think that even in my autonomy as a solopreneur - I felt like I would get in trouble?!

I like to connect to any fear present - because our fear is what keeps us stuck.

And I came to realize that my fear was I just didn't want to disappoint you all and I didn’t want to be judged.

Part of healing perfectionism (and people pleasing) is accepting that sometimes you're going to disappoint people, you're gonna be judged, a lot of people will have a lot of opinions about what you do...and THAT IS OKAY.

My intention was to build community but I was no longer feeling inspired or energized to do Small Flowness Saturday and I wasn't looking forward to it….I realized it may be because its ON SATURDAYS! So....I will try it on Friday mornings and see if it sticks.😬 Such a small conclusion, right?!

So much FUSS yet so anti-climactic. Welp! That’s perfectionism for ya!

Update April 2023: The Friday Flow is a success and still going strong!

Last week I reminded the Reclaiming group that perfectionism isn’t one or two acts of perfectionism or hyper-vigilance around a specific thing.

Perfectionism is a way of LIFE!

It literally affects all aspects of your life and it takes WORK to recognize the unique ways in which it shows up for you. It takes WORK to learn new tools and actually use them to heal this toxic behavior pattern so you can move towards a relationship with productivity that is supportive vs depleting.

Perfectionism is something that goes away gradually and tries to come back just the same. So even I, as a coach, still have to work at keeping it in check. One of the ways I do that is by coming back to the intention and motivation for why I'm doing something because this is what will keep me moving forward when perfectionism creeps in.

Sometimes it takes me a few days or even weeks to really nail why my perfectionism is showing up again, but it gets easier with practice…and a LOT of self-compassion. Self-Compassion is the antithesis to perfectionism!

I share all of this with you because I want you to feel seen in your journey to healing, because it's not linear.

We’re all cycling through different places on the journey and I hope my unexpected bumps in the road can be used as brightly painted yellow speed bumps to help you slow down and provide a smoother, gentler ride.

If you are currently recognizing that something no longer fits your life or feels out of alignment for you - I know how scary it can be to admit that it’s no longer working and it’s time to move in a different direction or simply let go and walk away. Know that pivoting is OK and it's part of the process. We have to TRY things out first to learn whether it is or isn't a good fit for us, right? Shoes, bras, lovers… it’s all the same.

If you’d like to learn more about the cycle of perfectionism and how to heal this toxic behavior pattern, I’m here to support you! If you feel called to go deeper, I invite you to book your free 1-hour clarity call and start your healing journey to free yourself from the chains of this destructive cycle and start managing it!

Sending you love and strength, beautifully brave bbs.

xoxo Nicole

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