It is incredibly easy, especially as women, to fall into the two dangerous traps of perfectionism and comparison. Society tells us that we need to have it all, do it all, look perfect, and have it all together. But the truth of the matter is that we will NEVER have it all or be able to do it all this side of heaven.
The word perfectionism makes me cringe. I am SO far from perfect and fall incredibly short each and every day. For a long time, I believed I needed to look like I had it all together on the outside while I felt like such a liar and hypocrite on the inside. I ended each day feeling guilt, like a failure and a hypocrite.
Society tells us to be perfect, look like we have our lives together, and that we need to do it all. Truth is that there was only one person that walked this earth in perfection . . . Jesus Christ. The rest of us are going to fall short daily. When we chase perfectionism, we miss the pursuit of God and the blessing of relationship with Him. We also miss His plan for our lives when we are so busy chasing someone else’s definition of success.
So what do we do with this? Totally give up and give in? We press on! We keep striving and refusing to let the failure beat us down and make us feel unworthy. We grant ourselves grace and celebrate that we are doing the best we can!
The trap of comparison causes one of two dangerous effects. It either causes us to put ourselves down because we feel that someone else is better than us OR it causes us to think and act as though we are better than someone else. I recently heard someone say that they were told as a child, “You aren’t better than anyone else and no one else is better than you.” I love this and plan to instill this in my children as they grow up!
Comparison is also dangerous because it helps us to justify sin. “My sin is not as bad as…” The trap of comparison keeps us so caught up in looking up or down at others, that we miss His plan for us!
Sadly, perfectionism and comparison are going to be struggles, here on earth, so let’s let ourselves and others off of the hook and give grace. Let’s walk in gratitude for who God created us to be and what He’s blessed us with. Let’s press into our Lord, love Him and others. Let’s walk in His plan for our lives and not His plan for someone else’s life.
I’m incredibly passionate about the process that we go through in my Intentional Living Academy because it helps us to define what matters most. We can’t do it all but we can focus on what matters most and give the people that matter most to us our best. It also focuses on getting productive. There’s nothing better than knowing at the end of the day that we loved well, focused on the people that matter most, learned from our mistakes and can tackle the following day with the same joy, love and grace.