When the same topic shows up repeatedly in client sessions over a short period of time it always gets my attention. Recently I have been tapping with a number of clients around the issue of perfectionism.
Perfectionism generally shows up in two ways.
First, and most commonly, is spending way too much time on a task to make sure it is just perfect before moving on. This becomes problematic because we fall behind or never get to the other tasks we need to address.
Second, because we are worried that it isn’t going to be just perfect we never start because perfect feels impossible.
Both of these outcomes are unuseful. (And yes, I know that is an understatement!)
Perfection Is Protection
At its core, perfectionism is really about keeping us safe. It is much less about needing to have something perfect because perfect is better. Instead it is about being afraid about what will go wrong if it is not perfect.
Subconsciously we worry that if it is not perfect:
- It will end badly
- People will judge us as not being good enough
- We will be found out to be a fraud
- Others won’t trust us in the future
Those concerns might seem extreme, especially when our perfectionism is focused on small daily tasks, but in reality that is what is happening.
What Could Go Wrong?
When we are caught in the middle of our drive towards perfection a simple way to approach it is to take the following steps:
1) Ask the question “What would go wrong if I don’t do this perfectly?” This question will give us access to what we are fearing.
2) Ask the question “What proof do I have this is true?” This is one of my favorite questions because it reveals what is propping up the belief that something could go wrong.
3) Tap! The information from the second question is perfect material to tackle with tapping. Does it produce a memory from the past? Tap on it! Does it unveil a limiting belief that we know isn’t true? Tap on it!
When we undermine the proof, we undermine the belief that something could go wrong. When the fear of something going wrong is undermined then the perfectionism doesn’t show up because it no longer needs to keep us safe.
Looking For Help With Perfectionism?
Are you tired of your perfectionism causing you problems? Among the 120+ tap-along audios available in the Ruach Center this is over an hour of tapping audios just around dealing with perfectionism.
Take a few moments to check out the Ruach Center