By a show of hands, how many of you have felt pressure to be perfect? I know I have. With every new adventure (getting married, having a child, starting a new career) we can strive to be our most perfect selves. We can want so badly for everyone to know how great we are and that we have every aspect of our lives in order, that we sacrifice our inner peace, joy, and health. The pursuit of perfection can become a vicious cycle if we become to accustomed to trying to be appear as though everything in our lives is perfect and worthy of praise. On top of that, we may fail to realize that we lose parts of ourselves during those moments when we are striving to be perfect. The less than ideal or desirable part of ourselves, that help to makes us who we are as an individual, get pushed away and denied every time we try to be perfect. We can become fractured when we deny the less ideal or desirable parts of ourselves to show or be known which can cause us to experience low self-esteem, anxiety, fear, regret and depression. If you’re struggling to achieve perfection, ask yourself, is it really worth it? Or will it even be worth it 5, 10, or 20 years from now?
Photo by Jonathan Hoxmar
Life can be full of hard-knocks, and at times it can feel as though we can’t get a break. Throughout life we will experience the loss of a loved, job, housing or something else that impacts our sense of comfort. When we experience a difficult loss or a series of losses, we may question if we’ll be able to go on living. We may feel stuck and not sure how to get away from the pain and discomfort we are feeling. The pain can be so blinding that we forget that help is nearby and that we are not alone. If there is something painful that has occurred in your life, there are people who can help you get through it.
People often ask me why I chose to become a psychotherapist. The answer is simple but complicated just like life. I’ve experienced my fair share of heartbreak, pain and struggle. I also know how important it is to have someone to walk the path towards healing and recovery with versus walking it alone. I also know how hard it can be to admit to another person when the hurt and pain becomes unbearable. As difficult as it may be during moments of extreme emotional pain, remember that there is always help nearby. Taking that step towards a helpful hand will require you to be vulnerable and admit that you can no longer carry the weight of the pain by yourself. If you do not feel comfortable allowing a friend or family member to help you, reaching out to a support group, spiritual or religious leader, or counselor can be helpful.
Photo By Gus Moretta
Christina is a Psychotherapist in private practice in Oakland California.