Blog: Perfect? Perfection? Erm, No Thanks!

Hello

I hope all is well.  I had a busy weekend making urgent changes to my garden fencing following an attempted break in recently. I’m grateful they failed, and my security cameras recorded everything. The new fence amendments are not perfect, but certainly are an improvement.

Perfect – its quite a simple word isn’t it, easy to say, short and not the most difficult of words to spell either.  Yet this word can be crushing, soul destroying and can cause complex problems in a person’s life. That’s why I will never use the word perfect, other than in the context of the wellbeing training I deliver.

I recently got asked (and what a great question) how do I deal with feelings of perfectionism? The question went on to ask how I deal with the feelings of I should be doing X amount of exercise, must be reading X number of books a year, achieving new skills, experiences and projects to form a perfect existence.  My simple answer is – I don’t.

My life has never achieved anything near a state of perfection, something I have come to realise I am very grateful for.

I love my house, I am very happy here and have been living in it for almost seven years. My house is comfortable and I generally am content with it. Is it “perfectly” clean and tidy? Hell no! I am not a huge fan of house work so I have always taken a that will do or that is good enough approach.  I live with two long haired black cats, perfect is never an option. Nor would I have it any other way.

Men often find it hard to talk about their feelings, emotions and issues, including mental health.  Many men face up to the toxic stereotype of masculinity, where we all must “man up” and be “macho” – anything else is apparently considered a sign of weakness.  Many men face this every day and fear speaking up. I will challenge openly anyone who tells me to man up or be macho. Its toxic and I will stamp it out when I see it.

I often hear many jokes at the expense of men too.  Gender generalisations are not good.  I have a hidden disability, which can make me quite ill at times.  Yet its acceptable for someone to openly say I have man flu? Say that to me and I’ll also challenge it openly – it is just wrong to discriminate like that..  To me, that is highly offensive. My life is far from (the fake idea of) perfect, but I will never stand for discrimination.

Perfection is pure toxicity in it’s purest form in my view.  I used to have significant issues with how my body looked growing up which led to years of depression and even times of self harm. Now, I know better.  I exercise extensively, but I do it for me.  I learned to accept the way I look and be content with it.  The big change was effectively sticking the middle finger up to those people who disrespect me and focus on just what I want.  It doesn’t matter about the past memories with a person and how long I’ve known them, if they don’t respect me I’ll cut them out.  And I did. 

My body, my life – no not perfect. I’ve got a life long medical condition that cannot be cured – but you know what, that is also not my fault.  I’ll do this my way. I’m fine just the way I am – imperfect.

My name is James and its good to know you. But if you don’t like me, that’s your problem, not mine.

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