Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist

 Real Skills Workshop - Community Event

RS 2022-10-26 Imperfectionist

Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist

Real Skills Workshop: Clear & Focused Action

Hosts: Rick Wilkes (@Rick) and Cathy Vartuli (@Cathy)

Wed Oct 26 2022 at 830pm EDT / 530pm PDT (90 mins with a 7 min break)

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I feel my response above would have been more perfect if the app didn’t need me to type more than 20 words…I wanted to just say ‘perfect’…my response now feels less than perfect…and I’m not even kidding.


I know. Wish I could change that setting…


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Register Now for: Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist

Do You Have To Be PERFECT?

I used to have to be Perfect. It felt like the only way to stay safe, to assure that I’d be smiled at.

At times I’d feel as calm as a toad who NEEDED to FLY in order not to be… eaten.

Ugh. So stressful.

Then I became an Imperfectionist. What’s that?!?!

Imperfectionism embraces the truth that even though anything and anyone and any situation could be “improved,” our heartistry is set free by being uninterested in striving for some delusion of perfection. (Read more here.)

Perfectionism is one of those destructive patterns that is socially acceptable. Praise-worthy even! “Oh Billi, you got an A+++ on your report. What a good person you are!”

For thriving though, we want to set ourselves free. We want to get the chance, each day, to explore, have fun, and even share our heartistry – even when it is not an A+++. Make sense?

Cathy and I both were strivers because of past traumas. The shift to being both competent and accepting of imperfection has been a road for us. When things get stressful, getting it “perfect” can still get triggered in our primitive brains.

Next Wednesday Oct 26, we’ll be practicing the Real Skill of being content with the good-for-us yet imperfect. Surprisingly content even!

Would you like to join us? The workshop will be imperfect. I’m also guessing it will be rich and nourishing, too.

Click Here to Register

(If you can’t attend live, register and get the recording)

P.S. Our Circle Membership - now available for
a one-time payment on a gliding scale
Circle Members get all Real Skills Workshops (and much more)!

This gliding-scale based EFT Tapping and Coaching session is 90 minutes long. Cathy and I are excited to explore imperfectionism with you and how it can free us all in our thriving.

We hope you’ll join us!

Click Here to Register

Rick & Cathy
Your Emotional Freedom Coaches
Schedule Private, Gliding Scale Coaching Sessions Here

P.S. Adira says, “Oh, how I find wonder in all the gloriously imperfects in my life!”

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Register Now for: Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist

Why Try To Be PERFECT?

“Why do I try so hard to be perfect?”

Have you ever asked yourself that?

…and let your fear answer?

What do I fear will happen if I’m not perfect?..?..?

If the answer brings tears to your eyes and a quiver to your lips, like it did mine, you’re on the right track. You’re discovering (perhaps once again) what fear has become a driver (slave driver) in your life.

To be emotionally free of this fear takes compassion and skill. If perfectionism arose in you early on, then it sits pretty core to how you’ll try to cope and survive when things get rough.

That’s okay!

You see, perfectionism is there to try and help us. If we trigger less judgment in the Big Scary People we’ll be … safer! Less likely to be punished. Or have our stuff taken. Or be unloved.

Am I trying ‘too hard’ ?

I believe us recovering perfectionists can feel for when we cross over from being competent to trying too hard. We lose track of what is Good… and try try try to make or do something that cannot be criticized.

I have a lot of compassion (now) for the inner child in me, little Ricky, who just wanted to be loved and to fit in and definitely avoid being punished. When he gets activated inside me, he can really be on the edge of tears if the soup is too hot or the oatmeal too cold that he made for others.

Bless him, and Bless your inner child, too.

And blessings and relief, too, for the more “adult you” that… got fired, or got a bad review, or got that email that hurt, or had that former friend “unfriend” you… and decided that you just needed to be even more perfect.

It’s possible to stay caring and competent and be content with imperfection. But there sure is a lot more to it than cussing at yourself to stop being a perfectionist! (As if that ever works…)

If this matters to you, join Cathy and I on Wednesday Oct 26 in the evening 830pm EDT and 530pm PDT (or get the recording and pretend you’re with us live). We both use EFT Tapping to calm the fears that activate “perfectionism” and embrace imperfectionism as an ideal.

Click Here to Register

(If you can’t attend live, register and get the recording)

P.S. Our Circle Membership - now available for
a one-time payment on a gliding scale
Circle Members get all Real Skills Workshops (and much more)!

This gliding-scale based EFT Tapping and Coaching session is 90 minutes long. Cathy and I are excited to explore imperfectionism with you and how it can free us all in our thriving.

We hope you’ll join us!

Rick & Cathy
Your Emotional Freedom Coaches
Schedule Private, Gliding Scale Coaching Sessions Here

P.S. Adira says, “I shall climb imperfectly and still get to the top!”

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Register Now for: Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist - It’s TOMORROW!

It’s Simply Imperfect

I can’t control what other people do, how they feel, or what they choose.

Neither can you.

Even if we worked together, with all our skill, focus, and heart… we can’t control how any person will judge our co-creation. Our inner perfectionist can gnash teeth and wail in frustration – no matter. SO MUCH is out of our hands. I call that…

Simply Imperfect.

Simply because it is actually simple and straightforward. I don’t control others. (Nor even my own thoughts and feelings! There is more of a savvy influence at best… not control.)

Imperfect because it reminds me that no matter how right it feels to me, how pleased I am with my efforts and outcome, everything and everyone gets judged on a spectrum.

I admit this was not what I innocently believed and strived for as a child and teen and into my 30’s. “If only I was perfect, I’d be… safe, loved, included… and rewarded not punished.”

Oh dear sweet beings… it’s hard to be human navigating unsafe emotional territory, hierarchies, power differences, threats, and punishments.

I’m certainly not judging anyone harshly for holding onto perfectionism until they have some framework that serves them better.

We just feel we have a less stressful and more thriving framework with Imperfectionism. Cathy and I would like to explore it with you, see if it fits… see if we can together calm your primitive brain enough to feel its vast benefits over perfectionism.

If this appeals to you, join Cathy and I TOMORROW, Wednesday Oct 26 in the evening 830pm EDT and 530pm PDT (or get the recording and pretend you’re with us live). We both use EFT Tapping to calm the fears that activate “perfectionism” and embrace imperfectionism as an ideal.

Click Here to Register

(If you can’t attend live, register and get the recording)

P.S. Our Circle Membership - now available for
a one-time payment on a gliding scale
Circle Members get all Real Skills Workshops (and much more)!

This gliding-scale based EFT Tapping and Coaching session is 90 minutes long. Cathy and I are excited to explore imperfectionism with you and how it can free us all in our thriving.

We hope you’ll join us!

Rick & Cathy
Your Emotional Freedom Coaches
Schedule Private, Gliding Scale Coaching Sessions Here

P.S. Adira says, “Hmmm, what is this imperfection I see…? How fascinating!”

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YES YES YES I would rather not have to do that extra typing too when just a YES would suffice.




I’ve changed it. You should be able to reply YES. The heart-like is there for “affirmation” for the most part without adding email reminders that someone replied. We’ll see how this works. Sometime, a YES reply is exactly what we want to say. Or NO.




I like it!!


Perfect!! I like it too!!


Thank you :heart:

1 Like

Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist - Session Recording

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Click for Computer Generated Transcript

Be a Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist

[00:00:00] Be a surprisingly content imper perfectionist. Hi, my name is Rick. I’m, I’m a recovering perfectionist , and, um, yeah, this is, this is an exciting topic for me. It’s also really tender because I know that there were times in my life where if you had said, Hey, why don’t you practice imperfection? Is, I would’ve been like, I would, I don’t know who I would be.

[00:00:34] Mm-hmm. if I wasn’t like really striving to be perfect and there were a lot, there were lots of things underlying that. I think when, when we have a lot of defensive patterns that made sense, they can kind of act as an armor on our identity, and so we kind of do lose track of who we are. What really matters to us, and that’s why this is a real skill and a real skills workshop.

[00:01:01] Rick, from Thriving. Now I’m here with Kathy Tuli from Thriving Now, and the intimacy Jo Dojo. Hey everyone. Yeah, I, Well, I know I need this class and as well, as much as I wanna teach it because I have recovered, as Rick said, am I recovering? I’m a recovering perfectionist and I noticed how like as I recovered more and more, I noticed how much stress there was in my life.

[00:01:26] How much like vigilance and awareness and focus was on, like scrambling up the hill when I was. Perfectly fine. Where I was like, there wasn’t a need to keep struggling to be perfect in so many areas. And it was really hard on my body. It was hard on my brain. It didn’t gimme a lot of presence with other people.

[00:01:46] Um, and I still have it sometimes. I was telling Rick a friend, I was, I was saying I wanted to meet some new people and a friend suggested, Why don’t you join Mensa because you like reac people? And I’m like, Oh, well maybe. And I went last night to the mens website and it’s kind of a little hoy toy I think for me.

[00:02:04] But like, I was like, Oh, maybe you can meet some good people. And I took the practice test and out of the 80 questions too of them, I just didn’t, I didn’t know what, I couldn’t figure out an answer. So I felt horrible all night long, even though the test came back and said the Mensa people said, based on the score, it’s highly likely you would get into Mensa if you took the actual test.

[00:02:25] And I, but because I couldn’t figure out those two questions, I was like in a really like slump all night long. I had to. get a hundred. And it was like, really, Why? I don’t even care that much about Mensa. But it was that like, I didn’t understand, I didn’t get a perfect score. And I think the more we can release this and catch it quicker, um, the more we can start being present with life as it is, um, and stop putting someone pressure on ourselves to be something we’re.

[00:02:55] We get to just be who we are and who we are. Sometimes makes mistakes or doesn’t understand a question or misunderstand something. And when we disallow ourselves to be present with that and be present with other people’s mistakes, I notice that when I’m most judgy of myself, I tend to be judgy of other people, not nearly as judgy as I am about myself, but it starts leaking out.

[00:03:16] Yeah. And so as we start keeling this and clearing this, there’s really huge benefits for us. There’s less stress on our body, there’s less stress on our brain and our, our energy systems. And we just start getting to be natural and normal with other people. And so I just wanna like encourage, like if you, if you feel like you have a long way to go, you know, anything I share here, I have fingers pointing back at me too.

[00:03:40] Like, Okay, so I didn’t understand two months of questions. I’m probably still an okay human being. I don’t need to be, you know, go to Alaska and hide. Curious, and this is a question for that I’m inviting us all to look at, um, Kathy, what, what do you think would happen if people found out that you, you just shared with all of us on video recorded forever.

[00:04:07] What, what do you think, what do you think the fear is grounded in? What do you think happens if you don’t know the answer and it doesn’t have to make logical sense? Yeah. Here I didn’t know these two. What do you, what’s the fear there? Um, I, I’ve always really trusted my brain to get me out of problems and, and to help me get through tough times in life.

[00:04:29] And I think if it’s not adequate, to, to ace every test. And there’s a sense of, uh, like, what if I run into problems I can’t solve? Oh my God, this is horrible. Um, I just feel my survival brain feels very afraid. Like, Oh my goodness, this is evidence that I can’t cope with the world as a whole. So, Yeah. Well, I heard that that goes to safety.

[00:04:56] Yeah. That your brain working really at, at the peak has helped you get out of a lot of situations or work through or find a solution or Yeah. Find a solution or find a healing path, or all those things. And this was like, I, I don’t know the answer to this. And so it was triggering to the feeling of like, I have what it takes to stay safe.

[00:05:23] Yeah. Yeah. And I, I do think we were talking about this before our call, like. There’s a lot of, like, our survival brain really wants us to be adequate, to be sufficient to survive. And so anytime we think we’re not, and we may have had unusual traumas when we were younger, or people that were judging us more harshly than we necessarily would fit for our age rage in survival.

[00:05:49] But we may have learned that we’re not adequate. And so any reminder of inadequacy can be kind of triggering. It can be like, Oh, uh, this is proof that I’m not good enough, just like they said when I was little. So just notice that little kids like Aira, if someone gave her the meant the quiz, she’d color on it.

[00:06:08] She wouldn’t, or she’d eat it. She wouldn’t answer the questions. But that doesn’t mean she’s not amazing kid. Two year olds don’t know how to take tests like that, but a lot of us are. What would happen if you were less perfect? If anyone would like to share in the chat, that helps us tune to our group that’s here alive.

[00:06:28] And if you’re watching the record. Pretend that you’re here with us live and locked down. What, what would happen if you were less perfect? Just maybe pick a number, like 10% less perfect. We don’t have to erase all striving to be better or do things well, but if you were 10, you loud 10% more mistakes into a certain project, or let yourself not be quite as polished all the time.

[00:07:04] Hmm. I’d be more relaxed and happy. . Yeah, that’s, that’s great. I would be Is there a fear? Why, why haven’t you done it then , Um, what’s the That’s great. We want to know. What would, I wouldn’t be successful. Okay. Um,

[00:07:28] have more breathing room and be relaxed. Allow me to laugh at myself. Definitely. Awesome. At work I’d be more embarrassed and would make more excuses, um, from somewhere inside. I thought I’d be going down. Mm-hmm. be going down.

[00:07:49] Um, someone shared just Be Me. I love the parade principle. 80% is just fine. And it is like a lot of times we spend a lot of our energy on things that are not, that are don’t really matter. I feel less valued, I’d be a better parent. I feel like the sense of control is behind my perfectionism because so much of my home life was out of control.

[00:08:16] Um, my struggle was more than I was told. Um, I am to, I was told I was totally imperfect. I had to learn that this isn’t true. And we do, sometimes we have to teach ourselves. The, sometimes parents, especially under resource parents and teachers, they forget that little kids don’t have the same experience in brain power.

[00:08:36] Their prefrontal cortex doesn’t fully form until they’re 25. . So like we often, people judge often if, especially if they’re under resources, they judge other people as like, they should have the same capacity as me. Why are they not living up to it? They’re just being lazy. They’re not paying attention. And we, we internalize that when we hear that a lot.

[00:08:57] So sometimes we have to teach ourselves a different way of being, Like if our parents taught a lang spoke a language then is not really good for us to use. We might have to learn a different way to speak to ourselves or to evaluate ourselves, um, that I would get in trouble. Yeah. And that, that feels true and in my body.

[00:09:20] Yeah. Um, there’s also the quality of, um, I felt very vulnerable. Um, Everything from my glasses to everything else. So I took, I, I took some competencies I had, and I tried to turn up the volume on them so that they were loud enough to get the attention that I needed and to have advocates, people that would look out for me, um, whether it was the teacher, um, or just people that, um, saw that I was a good boy and doing all the right things and following all the right rules.

[00:10:00] And so the truth is for, like, as we were talking about it, the truth is that if perfectionism is a thing that you’re aware of, or we can even put it in a slightly different term, that there’s an underlying fearful drive, um, that pushes you in ways that. Add stress strain and uh, as someone said, I would be a much more relaxed, I’d be a better parent.

[00:10:37] Um, isn’t it interesting like if we allow more spaciousness in how we’re doing, we actually can become a better parent, Um, striving to be, get that a plus plus us. Actually did not make me a better student in terms of like, what, how I define a student now. Student now is excited about what they’re learning and can explore and ask questions and not know the answers and even sit with not knowing the answer.

[00:11:11] Wow. You know, that’s really interesting, isn’t it? See, like in your your case, if I was get, if I’m in my perfectionist mode, then those two missed ones mean that I might be deprived of being a part of something that might even bring me new friends, cuz friends matter to me. Ah, screaming. Like, I want more friends, I want smart, you know, I want people that want to talk about all kinds of things.

[00:11:36] And if I’ve, if that’s what matters to me, then the perfectionism is kind of pushing and triggering a drive and there’s not much room to be. Curious. Um, I don’t, I, I tend to feel like when I, at least for myself, and I’m curious for other people, when you’re in that kind of perfectionist drive rather than the content imper, perfectionist, how much curiosity do you have?

[00:12:04] Is there room for it? Not usually for me, someone had also shared from that first question, I would continue to learn that my worth isn’t based on what I can do and how well I can do it. Basically, the human d doing that’s exposed to a human being. Um, and I’ve been a human doing a lot of my life. It’s very tiring and it’s never done.

[00:12:26] That’s one of the things, like, even if, and I, I don’t wanna step on your question, but like, even if I get something done, well, how long does that last? It’s a constant, like, I’m, I’m curious, like how many of you feel like. How much of your time, if you’re in in that binary of I’m either doing really well, I got it done perfectly, or I’m doing really horribly, how much of it do your time?

[00:12:53] Do you feel content? How much of the time do you feel like, Oh, I did this well enough, I can actually relax. And for me it’s almost never, especially when I’m in that perfectionist, running, running, I’m curious what people think, but like there’s not room for curiosity. If we’re constantly doing and striving and if we’re always trying to like, we’re only in that, oh, like one out of a hundred times I hit the bullseye and I feel okay for a minute.

[00:13:22] How long do you let that last? So we’ve, we’ve really started the pot here energetically. Thank you for participating. Um, I’d like to do some tapping. Yeah, we, If you’re new to EFT Tapping, we have a free guide. Um, It’s even being updated. Yes. And it’s at thriving The update will be available soon.

[00:13:45] Um, and we’re not gonna be teaching tapping, but we, we, we tap gently on these natural comfort points as we tune into a feeling or a thought and we give it a direction. So in very simple ways, we start at the side of the hand,

[00:14:07] even though I’m starting to. Even though I’m starting to realize there’s some really positive things with changing my perception here and there’s some really positive things with changing my perception here. I could be more curious. I could be more curious. I could be more patient. I could be more patient.

[00:14:25] There could be a lot more room for growth. There could be a lot more room for growth and exploration and exploration. Don’t I have to be perfect ? Don’t I have to be perfect in order to be? In order to be okay? In order to be okay off of the head? I was convinced I had to be perfect. I was convinced I had to be perfect or else or else eyebrow.

[00:14:56] I had to be perfect or else I had to be perfect or else side of the eye. I had to be perfect or else I had to be perfect or else the eye and I have really tried. I have really tried under the nose.

[00:15:13] I had to be perfect or else I had to be perfect. Or else, Jen, that’s not thriving. That’s not thriving on. I do want to grow. I do wanna grow into the arm. I appreciate my competence. I appreciate my confidence, Papa Head. I’m actually good at things. I’m actually good at things. Not everything. Not everything.

[00:15:37] Oh, I’m wondering what it would be to be a content imper perfectionist. I’m wondering what it would be to be content imper, perfectionist. Take a deep breath.

[00:15:54] Um, I, some people shared on this too. Um, Curiosity is squished with, um, in the perfection with perfectionism. Fear involve, the fear involve stops me from learning. I get defensive and overcom competitive when in perfectionist mode. I just realize that’s a good distraction from what other issues though through this conversation.

[00:16:16] Um, and I think that’s true. Like we have, we can use this to, to move. Like we wanna get better. And I loved your last line in the tapping Rick, where it’s like, what if I, I think if we start, we. Holding on tight to perfectionism, we can actually see where we’re doing good. We can see things where we’re doing, Maybe it’s a 98, maybe it’s a a c plus, but it’s better.

[00:16:40] You’re like, we’re doing something positive and that lets us feel a little more relaxed and open to that and appreciated. So we wanna do it more. But I think often we’re caught up in this like distraction and, and race of, of being better, being perfect. And I don’t know about you, but I often would move the line.

[00:17:02] So perfect for me. If I, if I hit it the next time, I had to be twice as good. It was never, or I, I move it a lot and there is a distraction in that. A way of not being as present with ourselves, not being present with the, like, ew, I screwed up feelings as well as the, Oh wow. I did pretty well in that. Maybe it wasn’t like Rock star National tv, but.

[00:17:27] I feel really good about that. Um, so there’s a, there’s someone wrote in the, I noticed I cut myself down, even with humor to show how I’m not doing things as well as I think I should. And so imperfection is, is the label that, you know, I was gifted by a friend of mine, um, who’s an, as calls, calls themselves an aspiring imper perfectionist.

[00:17:54] I, and as soon as I heard the term and there’s a book and other things, um, I, I started arguing with it, which was really helpful because I think that it showed me that all the progress I had done to, to create some room, um, For not being a perfectionist. I didn’t, I hadn’t really claimed the freedom, the emotional freedom.

[00:18:24] I knew that there was less stress when I, when I eased up on the perfectionism. But one of the things I believe that imperfection is indicates is that there aren’t shoulds and have-tos in the same way that I’m actually allergic to shoulds and have to, and the way that some people like it, it is so deadly for my, the things that actually matter to me, the things that are, I call my artistry, um, the shoulds and have tos, so a tapping around.

[00:19:01] Like, you know, I’ve done this one a lot , even though I should be able to do better, even though I should be able to do better. Ah, I’ve done what I’ve done. I’ve done what I’ve done and it’s actually okay and it’s actually okay, but it’s not perfect. But it’s not perfect. I know I could do better. I know I could do better.

[00:19:25] Give me 10 years and I will do better. Give me 10 years and I will do better. Give me an extra 10 hours. I’ll do better. Give me an extra 10 hours and I will do better. I’m shutting on myself again. I’m shutting on myself again. But I should do it better. I should do it better eyebrow. I should be able to do it better.

[00:19:45] I should be able to do it better. The eye. But I didn’t, but I didn’t under the eye. What if that’s okay? What if that’s okay? What if that. Efficient. What if that’s efficient? Ken, what if that’s savvy? What if that’s savvy? But I should do it better, but I should do it better. And you are. I am so allergic to shoulds and half twos.

[00:20:11] Im so allergic to shoulds and have tos. I am totally letting that go. I’m totally letting that go. If that, Maybe I can embrace being an imper perfectionist. Maybe I can embrace being an imper perfectionist. Oh, it’s kind of like a vegetarian doesn’t eat meat. An imper perfectionist doesn’t eat sheds and have tos.

[00:20:37] It’s like, oh, it’s, it’s, it’s off my diet. You know? I, I used to, I gave them up for length. Not Catholic though. They’re kinda like chewing on rubber bands, you know? They, they never actually give you anything tasty, but it works. It works. Yeah. Well, I think from just a pragmatic point, we had somebody that volunteered, right?

[00:20:58] Yes. Yes. Um, do you, do you wanna take that person or you want Go ahead first. Okay. Okay. I, I’m a very, I like to be pragmatic. Rick does as well, and I think one of the things that, you know, one, so people go to perfectionism, one cuz they think it’ll make them better too because they think it’ll make them safer.

[00:21:18] And three, because it’s a habit they learn from someone else. So, The better part, it’s really easy to debunk. Okay. So if you’re a perfectionist, if you get an A 99 and a test you beat, it’s like, Bad, bad, didn’t do a good job, our sur and then we don’t wanna practice anymore. Cause we’re constantly getting beat up.

[00:21:38] We don’t wanna do it anymore. And we get better when we practice. Notice where we could do better and gently steer towards that. If you think of your survival brain as a small dog, which is everyone always says it’s the intelligence of a small dog. I don’t know why small it very, it’s confusing to me, but a small dog, if you had a small dog and you wanted that dog to let you know when it needed to go out, and every, every time it, it started to tell you, but it didn’t tell you exactly the way you told it you wanted it to and you like bad dog, bad dog.

[00:22:09] Hmm. And like you’re wanting the dog to tell you it needs to go out. But if it’s not doing it exactly the way you want it to, you’re like, Bad dog. Bad dog. That dog is just gonna start whizzing in the kitchen. It’s not gonna anywhere near that front door, cuz every time it does, you’re finding something wrong with it.

[00:22:24] And so we never were, If we want to encourage ourselves to practice and learn to love something and steer towards being better, perfectionism isn’t gonna help. Our survival brain is like a it, that’s the intelligence. And we’re, we’re constantly telling ourselves, bad, bad, I didn’t do this well enough.

[00:22:43] We’re never gonna practice. And just from a pragmatic point of view, it’s just not a, not a helpful way to go. So would you like to work with our volunteer? Yeah, I’d love to. Uh, Ellen, if you’d like to unmute.

[00:23:07] So what’s going on for you? What are you, what are you noticing around this? Ellen,

[00:23:13] I’m not hearing you for some reason.

[00:23:17] You said you’re unmuted, but I’m not hearing you.

[00:23:23] Are you hearing Herrick?

[00:23:29] Can you, I can’t hear you now. They’re, they’re, they don’t have their mic around I see. In the chair. Oh, okay. Okay, okay. Okay. No problem. Um, if you wanna type out a little more what’s going on for you, we’re glad to to weave in some tapping of that. Yeah. So, would you like to do another tapping around the, the, the beating ourselves up over perceived things that are imperfect?

[00:23:57] Yeah. Yeah. At Chop they told me that if I pushed myself, I would get better if they, they , they told me if I pushed myself, I would get better with myself. , I got really good at pushing myself. Yeah, I got painfully good at pushing myself and I beat myself for every perceived wrong, and I beat myself for every perceived wrong before anyone else does.

[00:24:23] Yep. And then I wonder why I don’t wanna do it anymore.

[00:24:31] Cry, and then I wonder why I don’t want to do it anymore. What if I let go of beating myself up? What if I fully let go of beating myself up? What if I just noticed what I’d like to improve? What if I noticed what I’d like to improve and celebrated everything I did, at least partially right. And celebrate everything I do.

[00:24:55] At least partially right top of the head. That would be a big shift. That would be a big shift still. It would still be a big shift. Yeah. I brow, I’m still struggling with beating myself up. I’m still struggling with beating myself up side of the eye and I wonder why I’m reluctant to try again, and I wonder why I’m reluctant to try again under the eye.

[00:25:22] Why I procrastinate. Why I procrastinate, why hard? Why I avoid it? Why I avoid it, Jen? So I never practice and get any better on those things. I never practice and get any better. Coone, I’m starting to suspect their idea of beating myself up to get better might be flawed. Yeah, that’s flawed. . I don’t get better when I’m beaten.

[00:25:51] I’m gonna avoidant . Yeah. Under the arm. What if I started noticing that I’m practicing something that doesn’t work? What if I quickly noticed I’m practicing something that doesn’t work? Top of the head, there’s an, there’s an old habit there. There is an old habit there, and I can gently move to something else and I can gently move to something else.

[00:26:15] Just take a deep breath, notice what’s coming up for you. And some of us have this ingrained from when we were very young children, so if you have some resistance, it’s okay, Like do some more tapping. Maybe remember a time where, you know, I’m still, that’s spelling grade. My dad is very clear to me. Like, Oh, why didn’t you, I, when I was in first grade, I ran up to my dad.

[00:26:37] I got a hundred on a test. Why didn’t you get 200? Ah, like to this day, that’s heavy and I need to, I probably need to tap a few more times around that. But if you can just start weaving in more celebration of what you do, right. Um, we’ll talk in a few minutes about the, some of the qualities we bring, but what if you were kind while you did it?

[00:26:57] What if you liked how you smiled while you did this thing? Noticing the thing. We move towards the things we notice, and if we’re constantly noticing the things we’re gonna do bad or did bad, we’re kind of steering in that direction. If we start celebrating the things we did, like we can be aware. It’s not like we have to avoid and pretend we are perfect, but we, if we put some energy into celebrating and then gently guiding and encouraging in a different way, that gives us a lot more energy to, and excitement about doing something.

[00:27:28] Um, and it gives us the, uh, our brains start going, Oh, maybe it’s okay to do this. Maybe I’ll get some pets while I do this. Okay. I’m gonna try it.

[00:27:41] So we’ve touched on a number of things here just to, to pause and honor that. Um,

[00:27:53] there are people who have a very conscientious nature by nature, and many of us, um, people will push that as that way of getting better and better and better. Um, for, for us the real skill for emotional freedom here is, well, yeah, I, I love getting better. I enjoy getting better. I, I love even thinking about, well, what would better actually be?

[00:28:26] Is there something actually here that’s better? Cuz life isn’t the same kind of test true, false. A, B, C, D, all of the above kind of multiple choice thing. Um, what would it mean for it to be better? What. To feel more, something for me, more interesting, more exciting, more fulfilling. Um, so there’s better and then there’s better that’s being pushed, um, by some person, some compulsion, some something that we learned.

[00:29:03] So part of being a content, surprisingly, content imper perfectionist is if you like to do things better to grow, um, then acknowledging that and finding the sweet spot a little increment, even though that’s. And I, I really wish I had been able to say all the things that were running around inside of me.

[00:29:28] This is, this is good to share right here, right now. This is good. You know, Um, that type of thing with tapping can help soothe the part of us, which is vibrating with are, are we actually okay if we’re not beating ourselves up? That is a thing. The, we talk about the primitive brain, but as you’re shifting this, there will be a vibration, which is like, Oh, I really, I really liked the way that this turned out.

[00:29:58] And yeah, I can see some things I would, might have done differently or could have done differently, but I’m actually feeling pretty good about it, eh, really? Are you sure? That’s that reassurance, that inner reassurance is something that tapping can do for us. There’s. The safe. There are people that, um, if you’re your free spirit self, um, you know, they, they may not be able to handle it.

[00:30:27] Um, they may dysregulate, they may, um, you know, whatever perfect is for them. They may have a very narrow window of what’s, um, the language that you can use, the tone of your voice and things like that. It could be that you work for someone who has a very narrow view of how something needs to be done. And if you want to keep that job for as long as you wanna keep that job, you may, in order to be safe, need to thread the needle there.

[00:31:00] Um, if that’s the case, again, we can compartmentalize that. Even though with that person, I really do have a very narrow window of. That they can handle and that works for us. And I wonder, , what the rest of the world might offer me. So you’re saying, Hey, to be safe, back then I had to be this, and now I might have some people or some situations that I’m navigating.

[00:31:35] That’s okay. Um, and you’re doing it for safety. You be clear about I’m doing it to stay safe right now. And you’re giving some room for the rest of your life to start filling in with more freedom. And then there are people that are cruel. Mm-hmm. . Okay. They just, their psyche gets off. Tearing people down and finding people who are, have, have hot buttons.

[00:32:06] My sixth often say, I’m just trying to help if you ask me, but you’re just like, Huh. Really? Yeah. You’re trying to help by never actually affirming anything that I ever do. Um, had a sixth grade teacher like that, you know, um, I still see his face. But what’s interesting is that tapping on specific events around that man, um, had made me very clear that, um, one, as an adult, I’m never gonna sit in some workshop place where someone treats me that way.

[00:32:44] Like that is not acceptable. And, and Kathy, you had some words too. That, I don’t know whether you use them with people or whether they’re just on the tip of your tongue around that if somebody is criticizing you over something. Yeah, and just I, well sometimes ask them like, what, and you know what your tone, I ask them often about the tone cuz someone could say, hey, they could frequently and lovingly say, Hey, I noticed this happened and maybe this would be better that way.

[00:33:15] That’s just suggestion or advice. I don’t have to take that as like beating me up. But there’s people like in their tone, often in their body language will be pretty aggressive when they do it and I’ll feel that a lot of that pressure to be perfect and I’ll, I’ll ask them about the tone or their. Wow, your tone seems really pretty aggressive, or I’m feeling pretty attacked right now.

[00:33:37] Can you tell me what’s going on? Um, and I do think, just like when we internalize it, it’s okay to tell people I just don’t like, I don’t need that kind of encouragement. I don’t need that kind of a friend in my life. It does sound, it’s coming across as very judgemental and cruel. I’d like you to stop. , and I’ve been doing that with myself too.

[00:34:00] If I notice that I don’t have to be mean about it, but I can be firm just like setting a boundary with someone who’s being cruel. If I have a lot of those self shaming thoughts, I can just go stop to try to get my attention. It’s not like I’m, I’m not beating myself up. I’m just trying to like it. Pattern interrupt.

[00:34:16] Yeah, and I think for a lot of people it’s a pattern as well. They don’t even realize maybe they were brought up, that’s their language of love. Like the people that cared for them might have used that kind of tone and energy. So they think they’re being loving when they do that, but it’s really just, I, you know, it’s leaving you believe.

[00:34:34] If I hang out with someone like that for very long, I, my self-esteem starts crumbling and I’ve got a pretty, you know, some days I feel like I’m pretty strong. So I think it’s okay to tell, to gently talk to people or if you don’t feel like they’ll listen, you, you know, you can try talking or you can, you don’t have to, You can say, I wanna avoid this person if I can start looking for a new job, whatever it is.

[00:34:58] Someone shared earlier about, aren’t we trying to be perfect for our significant other or other people around us? And I don’t think that that’s realistic. I don’t think that’s real. If we’re trying to be perfect, we’re not actually sharing our real self with other people. It’s a way to avoid intimacy. And closeness.

[00:35:18] So if we’re not willing to make admit, like I love how Rick and I can, like we have times to schedule to work and either of us can say, Hey, I was really looking forward to work and I’m just not up to it today. Or I just need some quiet time or a headache. We give each other that grace and leeway and if it’s really important, we’ll try to show up.

[00:35:35] But we also have, we get to be human with each other and that’s a very intimate thing to be able to say, Hey, I really wanna talk with you. And I also just, I, you know, Rick was up with a deer at two in the morning. He like, I just don’t wanna connect with you right now. So if you think you’re doing perfect, being perfect, trying to be perfect for people you love, I invite you to step back a little one.

[00:35:59] I have tried to do certain things for certain people and I asked them about it years later and. I never cared about that. That was all in your head. So I was scrambling to try to do this thing that they did. They, it didn’t matter to them at all. Like they kind of noticed it, but it wasn’t a thing that mattered to them.

[00:36:17] And two is also a way to keep me from me to feeling too close and authentic with them. Yeah, it was like, if I’m struggling to be perfect, I’m actually sometimes avoiding closeness.

[00:36:30] I pause. Um,

[00:36:38] we have a lot of people that are in our community that are very adept at times of helping and being supportive with someone who’s mean or a bully or something like that. And I wanted to clarify. Thank you for the note in the, in the chat. If you feel like you have the resource to engage in a conversation like Kathy was describing or anything, any other way where you’re feeling calm and confident or clear that this is an engagement that’s working for me to seek a better connection.

[00:37:17] Something that is more real, less bullying, less mean. Great. Um, I think in this past week there have been a lot of people where, and I think I’m tuned to the, um, Recognition that when we’re looking at our past and where perfectionism came from, we can have people that have had in our past a certain kind of attitude.

[00:37:49] And we actually, they’re not there right now, but we can feel it in our, in our being, the echoes of their cruelty. Um, and I’m use, I don’t use that term very often. People that know me, know that I don’t. Um, and yes, they’re cruelty. They, they’re people that, um, the way that they interact with vulnerable people can be for them, the vulnerable person, really impactful.

[00:38:24] My stepmother was like that, and the teacher that I talked about. So when we have that in our past, we can look at like, how did I mal adapt to that? And one of the ways that, um, and you said it, Kathy, I created distance less intimacy. It’s good way to protect yourself with someone who’s, and it is the right distance, right depth concept for thriving is like, Oh no, I’m going to tell them nothing.

[00:39:00] And, um, and keep a lot more distance. That’s fine if that’s the decision with one person. But what I can see is little Ricky, um, because he was doing that with his stepmother, I did it with everyone in the family, you know, Dick’s brothers, a sister. You know, I kept much more distance because my. And I’m with a lot of compassion.

[00:39:32] I just went into that mode of trying to do no wrong, the perfectionist, the good boy, and keeping a lot of distance. So it’s wor, you know, in our work with emotional freedom, if some, if, if my sharing a story, Kathy, sharing a story reminds you of something from your life, making note of it as something that you could go deeper into.

[00:40:03] Uh, we have a circle with group calls or they’re open calls. This is a workshop. We have six open calls a month where you’re welcome to bring up a specific event and we can, we can tap on the very specific things that come up for you about. what’s going on? Mm-hmm. . Um, and yeah, go ahead. Okay. Well I just, I wanted to like, I, I really appreciate what you share about like, how you distance yourself by trying to be perfect.

[00:40:36] I think we do that people, someone shared earlier, it’s a way to distract as well. So that’s, striving for perfectionism can really keep us focused, but it also leaves us very rigid. And one of the ways to break that in a sense is to look at the different qualities of whatever you did. And this is something Rick suggested before, and I think it’s brilliant.

[00:40:56] Like we tend to have this like epitome top of the mountain thing, this image of what perfect would look like. But if we say, Oh, how was I? Like, was I kind when I did this? Um, was it very polished? But I didn’t have everything quite like, you know, You know, like quite how I wanted it, but it was very nice looking.

[00:41:19] Um, did I get it done fast? Did I do get it done in the midst of, I had no sleep all night cuz the baby was up and I still got it done. If we start breaking it down into more like organic and like different qualities, it’s harder to look at that like as, cuz there’s many qualities in most of the things we do.

[00:41:38] Um, and I think if we start looking at the individual qualities in there, it kind of breaks some of that log jam of I have to get everything exactly. Perfect. We’re starting, starting to notice the things that we did do well in it. Um, Yes. And that’s, and that is the essential aspect of being a surprisingly content imper perfectionist.

[00:41:59] And we’re gonna, we’re gonna take a, a seven minute break here. Um, if that, if that’s okay Kathy? Yeah. Um, and when we come back, I’m gonna give, I’m gonna read our draft concept of imperfection. And we’re gonna explore, um, some possibilities for, uh, those of us that, that we want to put our best into something, how we can, how we can choose, uh, an aspect of what matters to us to have as a focus, not to nec not to make perfect, but to get a chance to express it.

[00:42:42] I think that that leaves, I’m noticing when I do that, I’m, I, my level of contentment, uh, goes way up. So I’m looking forward to sharing that. We’re gonna pause the recording. If you’re watching the recording, um, we invite you to take a, a brief break here as well. Welcome back. Huh? Yeah. So I wanted to share just some words as imperfect as they are at capturing this.

[00:43:15] If you go out to Thriving Now, thought center slash t slash imperfection, you’ll see this concept and it’s a draft concept and people are adding to it. And I love that. That’s the idea, be behind these Thrive, um, concepts for thriving is that we, um, together as a community explore slash imperfection.

[00:43:39] Imperfection slash t slash imperfection. Um, so imperfection is embraces the truth that even though anything and anyone and any situation could be quote, improved, our HARVESTRY is set free by being uninterested. And striving for some delusion of perfection imperfection is frees us from the psychological tyranny of perfectionism.

[00:44:09] I wrote that for me. Releasing perfectionism allows us to focus on what matters and take inspired action without heavy self-criticism and fear of judgment. Being an imper perfectionist is fun. We can laugh and enjoy awkwardness as we learn, grow and co-create. And being a student teacher, part of my identity always in all ways is empowering and meshes beautifully with imperfection.

[00:44:37] And there’s another, a couple of sections here, one on what’s realistic, possible, and fun and imperfections still care. So if any of that appeals to you and you are curious, we invite you to the Thriving Now community center, thriving out at center. There’s also a search bar. You could just type in imperfections or imperfection is, and see what we’ve been doing around that.

[00:45:03] And I say that because, um, one of the core explorations for, for me is, you know, when I, when I look at qualities about myself and a multidimensional way, like I, I love being really focused and well planned. Do you like that, Kathy? Do you like having a plan and like working the plan and seeing it? Thank you.

[00:45:33] So happy. Yeah. That’s so great. I also like being improvisational. Like give me a title and let me riff on it. Um, give me the subject of an email universe and I will write something and see where it goes. Not planned. Um, both inhabit me. Um, and what you may notice if you, you go into what matters to you, aspects of yourself that you enjoy expressing, expressing, um, you may find that sometimes, uh, guess what?

[00:46:11] It, you can’t actually be linearly planned. And be spontaneous at the same time. Um, improvisational wild and free. I love being wild and free. Uh, that is not the same as dropped in and focused in the same way. I like that wild and free. Let’s me be dropped in and focused and maybe then bounce off to do something else.

[00:46:41] Are you noticing like if you’re a perfectionist, that you could drive yourself cuckoo brains? Mm-hmm. by trying to be all that you can be all at the same time. Like, Oh, okay. It just doesn’t work. It doesn’t work. And that’s why one of. Invitations about being a surprisingly content imper perfectionist is, um, let’s say that you have a, a task to do any task.

[00:47:15] It can be, um, cleaning up the kitchen. It can be writing something for work. It can be taking a walk and you tune to an aspect of yourself that feels like it wants to be expressed in the now, and you think, Okay, think and feel into, Okay, so that is what I’m going to be putting energy into. I’m gonna let the other things be competent enough, even if I’m being spontaneous in improvisation.

[00:47:52] I still like to be safe. I don’t set that completely aside, but there’s a difference between maximizing safety in a situation and. , Um, putting as much creating as, as a container that allows for the, the most freedom within what is, what feels like healthy, reasonable safety. Does that make sense? So if I want to be of, um, graceful, they’re dishes, There’s an oatmeal pot from this morning, I saw it.

[00:48:29] My family’s in bed, they’re not gonna be cleaning it. Um, so let’s say I wanna be graceful at and, and blend that with some mindfulness. So what do I do? Well, I could, I could really feel the soapiness, I could feel around the inside. Let my body be more smooth, smooth and fluid. Now, if I wanna be efficient, it would be like scrub, scrub, scrub.

[00:48:57] Look at that. 17 seconds. That’s clean enough , right? 17 seconds. Um, this to me, takes the pressure off because I’m, I’m looking for my contentment from an aspect of myself, not the wholeness of myself. The rest of me is still there. It’s able to adapt, be supportive. For example, I believe that if now having heard Kathy’s story about the exam she took, if I was going to go take that exam, I would put on the, Huh.

[00:49:34] I’m curious at this point in my life where the gaps are that, that this organization tests for in like, what’s, what’s fresh in me, where, how my mind works. Like, I suspect that if I took the men of emotional intelligence one that I would have at least two that I wouldn’t like. Yeah, but you’d probably rock it too.

[00:50:00] You’d probably rock it on the parts. Right. And if I approached it, um, from a, the they’re d are different ways to approach that. I could approach it. Like, I wanna buzz through this and be really efficient. Oh, I wanna pause and really feel for what’s the emotional intelligence behind asking this kind of question.

[00:50:20] What does this reveal about me? Like you notice, And so this, this notion, um, and I put in there surprisingly content. because there’s still a part of me that goes, Well, you know, we could have done this faster, or we, we, we could have done this earlier, or we coulda should have, Oh, there’s that should, I’m sorry.

[00:50:48] I’m a a should a non, And, um, yeah, we imper, perfectionists, we don’t, we don’t chew on those anymore.

[00:51:01] there can be a contentment too that comes from finding a concept that you’re putting energy into that frees you like. That’s one of the things for me, um, that’s one of the reasons I wanna put out these concepts is that I believe that if you take one or two concepts that you put energy into that, that enhance your sense of freedom.

[00:51:27] Um, Oh yeah. That really contributes to your thriving. Yeah. I think of it kind of as nutrition. Like if you just eat kale all the time, you’re not getting enough protein or whatever. Like if you’re just rigid and planned all the time, you’re not giving yourself a chance to dance. But if you’re always just dancing, you’re not exercising the part of you that likes to be more planned.

[00:51:51] And I, I like kind of like that, kind of what, what attributes can I bring forward that will make this experience more delightful or bring more value to it?

[00:52:05] So, um, should I, I’d love to do some tapping on different aspects of this. That would be great. And so the chat is open if you want to throw, want to offer an aspect that’s coming up for you or one that you’d like to have on the recording, and we’ll do some tapping. And I to leave one share, is it okay to go with the one that’s there?

[00:52:25] Yeah. Great. Um, so per person shared my relationship to striving is to be perfect. Developed as a kid, trying to be perfect for and loved by my parents, But this was an impossible game. When I improved in one area, they moved to move the goalpost. No way to get there. Impossible to find out. Growing up, I learned to accept that and stopped, Um, took many steps back and look, looked inside to be okay with me.

[00:52:51] Would like, if you can lead us tapping on that. So I would, I, I like when we’re young, we are, we are genetically engineered. Through, you know, through evolution and whoever survived, like to bond with our parents and to please them because most of the time there are most, they’re the most closest conduit to abundance and for many small children, they’re the only conduit for care and wellbeing.

[00:53:19] So like, we really are hardwired to try to make those people happy and we will meld ourselves and, and more for ourselves to try to fit into what they need. So karate chop, even though I really thought I had to be perfect to win their love, even though I really thought I had to be perfect to win their love, and I tried so hard and I tried so hard, I did everything I could.

[00:53:46] I did everything I could, tried with every part of my being. Tried with every part of my being and I kept thinking next time I might be perfect enough to get that love. I thought next time I would be perfect enough to get what I needed. And it never quite worked. It never quite worked. Top of the head. I send compassion back to that younger self.

[00:54:09] I send compassion back to that younger self eyebrow. That little me tried so hard, that little me tried so hard and we could never quite get there. Never quite get there under the eye. They kept moving the goal posts, I feel so true. They kept moving. The goal post under the nose. I tried so hard. I tried so hard.

[00:54:39] Chin. My heart was so courageous. My heart was so courageous collarbone. I kept thinking, I’ll get there next time. If I try a little harder, kept thinking, I’ll get there next time. If I try a little harder, I’m there and never quite made it and never quite made it top of the head. I used to think that was about me and I used to be convinced it was about me.

[00:55:06] I eyebrow, and it might be more about them and it really might be more about them side of the eye. They may not have had loving and generous parents. They might not have had loving and generous parents under the eye. Or maybe they were afraid to be too close. Maybe they were afraid to be too close under the nose.

[00:55:25] It doesn’t really matter. That feels good to say it doesn’t really matter. Chin what’s ma. What matters is can I accept me Now? What matters is, can I accept me? No collarbone, my soft underbelly my soft thunder belly under the arm. Days where I don’t do things very well, Days where I don’t do things very well, top of head, I kind of think I need more, even more love on those days.

[00:55:55] I think I need more love on those days and I might just give it to myself, but I might just give it to myself. Just take a breath. Notice that I do think that on on days when I’m having a really rough day, nothing’s working right. I often will call Rick up and say, I just need someone to be kind to me for a few minutes.

[00:56:17] I need someone just to say poor me. Like, you know, just like, whoa. And then someone says, Poor me. I still love you, and I feel so much better. I don’t think it’s, we, I think when we’ve gotten things right, it’s great to get celebrations, but it’s the days when we’re tripping over our ownselves or shutting our door, our fingers in the doors or reformatting something that we didn’t mean to.

[00:56:39] Those are the days we kind of need more love than any other day. And I, so I think it’s, it’s very sad that many of our parents had the opposite view and didn’t give us the love we needed the most that would let us just like, be this is me. Would you like to love me or not? If you don’t want to go play, I’ll go find somebody else.

[00:57:04] Uh, chat’s open. If there’s anything that comes up for people that they’d like to focus on, um, I’d like to do one on increments. Yeah.

[00:57:22] Even though a part of me thinks it’s all or nothing, even though a part of me thinks it’s all or nothing,

[00:57:31] it’s either perfect or it sucks. It’s either perfect or it sucks. I’m pretty sure there’s a spectrum. I’m pretty sure there’s a spectrum. Even though there’s a part of me that doesn’t see a spectrum, even though there’s part of me that does not see a spectrum, it just sees it as perfect or sex , it just sees it as perfect or sex.

[00:57:51] That leaves a lot of things really feeling not so good. That leaves a lot of things, feeling not so good. Top of the head.

[00:58:06] I get it. I get it. Eyebrow, part of me sees things as. Good or horrible part of me sees things as good as h, good or horrible, eye of the eye, and that’s complex and that’s really complex. End of the eye. I like to do things well. I like to do things well. I enjoy being competent. I enjoy being competent, Jen.

[00:58:35] I like being safe. I like being safe, and I have a real need for that, and I have a real need for that. And I don’t want to be punished. I don’t wanna be punished or unloved or unloved.

[00:58:58] And I’m open to being surprisingly kind and understanding with myself, and I’m open to being surprisingly kind and understanding with myself and doing what I can to meet those needs. And doing what I can to meet those needs.

[00:59:21] I like that is we get away from the binary, um, and to start giving ourselves some kindness. Um, one of the things I’ve noticed, I’ve been getting on the treadmill and my, my idea of good job on the treadmill came from when I was used to train for marathon canoe races. 70 mile canoe races, a full day race.

[00:59:41] And this is a long time ago, but our goal was we had to run so many miles and do so many miles on the. Before we were allowed, my dad would allow us to do these races because we, if we weren’t in shape, we could get hurt. So it was always like, how fast? How, how quickly can we get there? How, how fast can we get there?

[00:59:58] And I hurt myself trying to walk too far. And one of the things that I’ve been doing now is the goal isn’t how fast I can get there or how fast I can push myself. It’s how present can I be with myself? As I do the walk and I can speed up if it feels like it’s, my body wants that. But the whole thing is, do I feel like slowing down, going faster?

[01:00:19] Can I be with each step, almost like a meditative walk. And so my goal, having a different goal really has it’s, I’m building new muscles. It’s not always easy. And I still get in my, Oh, I did this today in five minutes. I can do it tomorrow in four. And like really pushing myself. But that’s not how I really want.

[01:00:38] That’s not what I wanna emphasize or not what I wanna create, what I wanna create with myself. I wanna create this sense of I’m present with myself and if I’m, if I wanna do something where I could really push myself, it’s okay to push myself some, but I want to be present with myself when I do that and see what’s really right for me now.

[01:00:55] Not just because I went that speed yesterday, I’m gonna go this speed today, but what is right for my body in this moment? Um, and it’s been like, For me, I just, I think of sometimes if we shift the lenses when we, if we have a lot of perfectionism and we’re running into problems, can we shift the lenses to like being more present, being more kind, being more aware of what our needs are in the moment, speaking up for ourselves, that that’s some different, We’re using different muscles often when we do that.

[01:01:26] I would often try to be perfect and that I’d be silent when I grew up. Like I would not speak up if something bothered me. That was my form of one of my forms of perfection. I was like, everything is okay all the time. I can handle everything. And now I’m kind of like, Hmm, I’m gonna try to speak up a little more and say, Hey, you know, that really kind of bothered me.

[01:01:44] Can we find a different way for us to communicate? Or can we do this a different way? Mm-hmm. , So sometimes perfectionism, breaking perfectionism means kind of expanding the lenses or finding a different place to focus and just, and I put a note right on my treadmill. Be with myself. It’s the, the, it’s the gain, not the gap.

[01:02:07] And just, I put that there and that, so it’s right in front of my face every time I get on the treadmill. And it helps me remember. So if that’s something, like if you go in the mirror in the morning, one of the ways I had a lot more body acceptance was to put post-it notes on the mirror to remind me like, what can I appreciate about myself today?

[01:02:26] So if you, if that’s something you wanna change, gentle reminders to help you refocus your attention. When your eyes are very, the muscles in your eyes are trained to go there, how can we train them gentle reminders to go someplace else.

[01:02:42] Appreciate your metaphors there. And like the energetic, we call them lenses, switching lense. So the lens of like expressing vitality, right? Like pushing the edge of heart rate and muscle and everything else, that’s a particular lens. Um, the lens of being present as in movement, um, to me is, is a profoundly different one.

[01:03:20] Um, I was, I was looking up, I I’ve done 684 morning miles. Today’s morning mile was, was not, when I got up with Aira at 2:00 AM wasn’t, we didn’t go for a morning mile. Uh, it came around, you know, 2:00 PM Um, and I, I have used that. Container of going out and, and being in nature to, to express many different lenses.

[01:03:57] For myself, today’s was okay, this is a time to nourish my body. So I put on music and I paused a lot. And what you would see is that my, my watch tracked my heart rate, I, it stayed pretty chill even though I was going up and down hills and things cuz I was really in the, take it in nourish, you know, Even as the dog would, the dog and the owner would.

[01:04:34] Pass I would take the dog’s enjoyment in. Um, cuz that’s what it was about. And there are times when I want to feel that movement, like I’m whooshing down the trail, like I’m moving my chi, not quite, I don’t run on the trail like chi walking, you know, where my whole lower core is like light and boom, boom, boom.

[01:04:58] And that’s a very different, um, lens. And if I was always approaching my walk with the lens of expressing my vitality today would’ve been very depressing. Um, well you had almost, no, it nourished my vitality, but I did not have any like tank to go out there and do it with. Um, and so this is again, like we are practical, like.

[01:05:34] Part of when the lens that I look at these workshops is, is it practical? Are these things that we can apply and does it contribute to our thriving? And to me, the, the different lenses or the different aspects of ourselves that, um, we can do the same thing. If, if you have something that’s repetitive in your life, that’s a great, I think my, my, my gut says that those offer more option for creativity around the way that we do them in with intention to tune our emotional vibe to doing it differently.

[01:06:21] Um, sometimes I will do the dishes with no music. Sometimes it’s the Latin for. Playlist. Sometimes it is piano chill. Um, sometimes it’s koon because , cause the two year mylon wants to do the wheels on the bus as I do the dishes. Um, so those are different aspects and they allow for the tuning of ourselves to, um, a beauty in variation and variability and the like, which from a biophysical standpoint we know is helpful.

[01:07:05] It’s good for our thriving to have variation amidst, um, our heart rate. For example, heart rate variability is one of those things they measure, um, for, uh, like how’s your heart doing? Um, so. That’s, that’s the essential quality for me of being a surprisingly content imper perfectionist is this feeling for what’s true and right for me in an activity and tuning to that.

[01:07:37] State of being and allowing that to be the focus. Um, let me think. It’s also really useful, like the last call, we did the call vigilance and we invited you to notice, even if you listen to that one, um, we invited you to notice how much do you, do you feel like you should be vigilant versus how much does your logical brain think you should be vigilant if you actually look around and there are certain activities where we wanna be pretty, we wanna be perfectionist.

[01:08:06] If you’re a brain surgeon, please be a perfectionist. If you’re a heart surgeon, like if you’re, you’re doing, you’re, uh, uh, detonating, aal or like diffusing de disarming a bomb, we want you to be very, very careful. But I think a lot of times we make it so it’s just as important that I put away the dishes as perfectly.

[01:08:25] Like they have to be just stacked, just right and they have to be quiet. I have to be quiet about it and I have to do it very quickly, like when really that doesn’t matter. , if they’re not stacked quite right, someone’s gonna unstack them to use them very soon. If I make a little noise, unless someone’s sleeping and, and is, you know, very cranky, it’s gonna be fine.

[01:08:44] Uh, and if I don’t do it super fast, if I do a few plates and then, you know, kind of look out the window or do something else, it’s who cares? But I think a lot of us have that kind of rigid perfectionism kind of hardwired in because we’ve just been brainwashed to it. So I think if we can let our logical brain come in and say, really, what is the risk here if I’m not perfect?

[01:09:07] Um, and, and notice we’re it’s tapping on that. Yeah. Karate top. Even though I have to, I think I have to be perfect all the time, even though part of me thinks I have to be perfect all the time. And my survival brain joins in and my survival brain joins in. It’s terrified of not being perfect. It’s terrified of not being perfect.

[01:09:28] And I’d really like to find a different way to hold this. I’d really like to find different ways to hold this. I’d like to let my logical brain into this mix. I’d like to let my logical brain into this mix and really evaluate how urgent is this? And really evaluate how urgent this is top of the head. If it’s brain surgery, I really wanna be perfect.

[01:09:56] I can’t even say that. No, I wanna try to be fairly perfect. Or what’s a, I wanna be very careful. I know, I know brain surgeons. I’ve worked with some, And, um, it’s not about perfection. It’s, it’s about, it’s, no, it’s, it’s skill. Okay. It’s bringing skill, but it never goes perfectly like the ones that I’ve, I’ve worked with.

[01:10:20] Okay. There’s like, there’s a quality of professional presence and focus that. To do successful brain surgery, you need, you can’t be casual about it, but there’s a kind of calm confidence that you’re going to be able to be with whatever shows up. Surprise, surprise. It’s not gonna be how you think it should be, even if you have all of the imagery.

[01:10:47] That’s why I’m, if I’m a brain and I wanna have more care, Yeah. I wanna be tuned the way that’s right. For me, I bro, if I’m putting away the dishes, maybe I don’t need to care so much. Maybe I can turn down the caring quite a little bit, an increment when I’m putting the dishes the way, the side of the eye, if I’m putting away the laundry, I don’t have to be perfect.

[01:11:13] I do not have to be perfect putting away the laundry under the eye. And if I notice a lot of fear, If I notice a lot of fear under the nose, I can ask my survival brain what it’s afraid of. I can ask my survival brain, What are you afraid of, Jen? It might be that there’s a little one that’s really scared of not being loved.

[01:11:36] It might be that there’s a little one that’s scared of not being loved or criticized. Color bone are yelled at. I yelled at under the arm and I can send love and tap and clearing that. I can send love and tap and clear that top of that. Maybe I don’t have to be perfect at the things I’m doing. Maybe I don’t have to be perfect at the things I’m doing and I can even judge what things to put the most focus.

[01:12:05] And even judge where to put the most focus. Just take a breath

[01:12:12] and if you, this may, maybe this will, you’ll hear our voices sometime later when you’re just doing something. Just notice the amount of vigilance to your perfectionism that’s in your system. Yeah. And like, Oh, is this really just like we did with the, like how vigilant are we in our lives? Looking around?

[01:12:28] Like how much danger is there? How much danger is there? If, I think for most of us, if you’re anything like me, I spend a whole bunch of effort and time on things that nobody cares about. Like literally no one would even notice if I didn’t do them or if I did them less well. And there are a few things like turning in a presentation for a boss or like when we’re here, Rick and I plan and try very hard to.

[01:12:54] show up as present and able to, uh, tune into what each of you need during the call. But that’s not really perfectionist. We don’t know how to be perfect with that because it’s really how present can we be? How can we make sure we had enough sleep and we got what we need to eat? And there’s not distractions going on.

[01:13:11] But the rest of it is we’re just trying to be present and bring what we, we are guided to, to, to offer for each of you. So, um, I think if, if maybe you’ll hear our voices the next time you start beating yourself up and you can step back just a little and go, Huh, maybe I don’t have to be quite so rigid about this.

[01:13:32] Maybe I can let this go a little bit.

[01:13:41] I’m, I’m drawn to, We’ve talked about looking and seeing a lot of.

[01:13:50] Energy in the head. I think that’s where a lot of my perfectionism tends to sit or get activated and triggered. Um, might be a good time to, if you like this, to put your hands on your core and be the base of the throat above the collarbone points. Maybe lower around the heart, can be just giving yourself a squeeze, feeling your, your belly, all that goes on there.

[01:14:29] Uh, physically, emotionally, chemically.

[01:14:44] Is there an aspect of you that if you’re in perfectionist mode, what aspect of you doesn’t get any room, any space to be a part of the experience? Hmm. Yeah. I love that. I noticed I’m trying to be really perfect. I’m not, I, I’m not silly. I don’t let myself just be silly with folks and I love it when I feel safe enough with someone to be silly and trust them enough to not think I’m, They may think I’m really strange or odd, but as long as they laugh with me, it’s okay.

[01:15:24] Yeah. Fun, joy, I see play.

[01:15:32] Um, It’s when, when I, one thing, one way I help step out of it for myself is I like people who are playful and silly with me. I don’t know where, how my brain decided I couldn’t be silly and people wouldn’t like it. So since I like people to be silly, I’m like, Oh, maybe if I let the playfulness out in myself, I can invite other people into that and they might actually like me more, even though I have this brain idea that this, this thought that they’ll, they’ll judge me and run away screaming, being real and honest.

[01:16:08] Mm-hmm. . Yeah. We often, when we’re trying to be perfect, we often pretend. There’s a lot of, uh, pretend and kind of manipulating other people’s image of ourselves. Often we’re trying to protect ourselves. We’ll, we’ll try to say things in a certain way to get, to create a certain image with other people. In a sense, we’re kind of manipulating how other people think about us rather than just speaking from our heart and mean who we are.

[01:16:36] Being authentic. We can be kids. Yes. Another, I’m aware that if I’m in perfectionist mode, I start dropping into a kind of tunnel where, um, you know, in a tunnel you can stop, you can go forward, you can go back. There’s not a whole lot of variation there. Um, I start to feel like I don’t have choice. Like the choices start narrowing, including ones to be a choice, to allow myself to be interrupted or go tend to something else.

[01:17:12] Um, It could be biological, like I need to go get some water or use the restroom. If I’m, if I’m in perfectionist mode, I will not pick up on that. Um, it could be that instead of being responsive to like supporting someone else in the space, I become annoyed. Like there’s not an acceptance that other people are also living their life with their own desires.

[01:17:43] And how can I be perfect if everything around me is chaos? They’re not all, you guys are not coming off my perfect here, you know, You know. And so, um, I’m curious if I tried on, like if I’m doing work in a communal space, but if I allow myself to be really present and also guided in whether to shift my focus without.

[01:18:12] Resistance. That’s different from being distracted into something like I’m dropped in, I’m working on it. But if there’s something else that really has my name on it that I can, I can let it be where it is imperfect, undone. And undone is imperfect by the way. And there’s a right there . Perfect. Um, gosh, it really makes me start to choke up.

[01:18:41] Um, yeah. So we hope that in our own imperfect way, this has offered you some things that you might entwine engage with practice. I do believe that, um, How we, our posture, our attitude, our energy around the concept of perfect imperfect. What do they mean? How do they get interpreted? Can I create, um, a non-binary experience of life, of my emotional world that allows me more emotional freedom, choice, acceptance, flexibility, vibrancy, joy, um, realness, honesty of myself with people that are in a place where they can receive honesty as well.

[01:19:50] When we, when we do that, there’s, that fits at least my, my overarching desire for people to thrive. Like when I meet someone who is. Practicing this as a real skill. Um, there’s an, there’s a, a kind of aliveness in being in relationship with them. I know that many of, I know many of you really well, and I appreciate how often, um, we are able to be with our imperfections, and that is just a remarkable quality.

[01:20:29] Yeah. I wanted to just point out like, if you worry about people not liking you, if you’re not perfect, notice that Rick and I shared a number of ways that we had fam like we were not perfect or we noticed imperfections, and I’d invite you to notice, do you feel closer to us or further? I generally feel closer to people that are willing to share imperfections.

[01:20:54] I feel like they’re real, they’re trusting me. There’s an authenticity there. So if you’re, if you have a concern that if I start being less than perfect, everyone’s gonna run away. Most people are gonna start feeling closer to you. And the people that are really, really scared of feeling close are probably gonna run away, or they might run away for a while, but the people that really are open to being close and feeling connected, they’ll embrace it because it’s like, Oh, hu, I don’t have to be perfect either.

[01:21:25] Thank God I was trying, but it wasn’t working . So, um, yeah, I just think that’s really important to remember. Remember, I always, I, I haven’t yet to find some, a time when someone shared authentically who they were, imperfections and all that. I didn’t feel closer to them. And when someone’s really, really trying to be perfect, there’s like a rigid wall.

[01:21:48] It’s like Velcro or, uh, what is that, Rex? And you’re like trying to get in and there’s no way to even connect. So thank you all. Thank you Kathy. Um, the exploration continues. Thriving now. DOT Center is our community center. We would love to have you join us there. Uh, it’s where the replay, um, are posted for real skills workshops and, uh, ongoing, uh, rich group of explorers.

[01:22:14] So thank you. Great job everyone today. Thank you for being here. Bye.

We covered…

  • What would happen if you were less “perfect” ?
  • We do have a useful drive to be better, to be safe, and to not get beat up (by ourselves or others!)
  • EFT Tapping for different fears and concerns around perfectionism
  • Incremental changes
  • The Surprisingly Content Imperfectionist Approach – pick one quality of yours to experience as part of a task or a connection for that one time. Mix it up, especially for those things and people who are a regular part of your life.
  • Sometimes our qualities can contrast with one another, making perfectionism a real mind-mess. For example, we can want to plan out the details and execute the plan (that can feel really good). We can also want to be a wild and free and spontaneous, improvising our next yes each step of the way. Uhh, best to try those at different times, eh?
  • Being an imperfectionist is fun! We can laugh and enjoy awkwardness as we learn, grow, and co-create.

Resources Mentioned

  1. Free EFT Tapping Guide

  2. Thriving Now Emotional Freedom Circle

Great to have you on this journey with us!