Perfectionism: a badge of honor or a trap?
Learning to wear a mask is a lesson we learn pretty early in life.
We learn that our core feelings cannot be expressed if they do not conform to the standards of acceptable behavior in the culture where we grew up.
The message we get: I must find a way to be someone else. Someone who is not me.
I find this to be the source of our suffering.
The sense of failure and shame to be who we really are is what drives us to the edge of despair.
The need to hide our true self, the fear that we’ll be found out and lose the love, erode our self-esteem and prevent us from forming real relationships.
Joy is a lasting state
This quote really caught my attention when I read it this morning.
I spent the majority of my life chasing happiness.
I say chasing because happiness proved to be fragile, and depended in great measure on things that were completely out of my control.
There was an element of attachment to life needing to be a certain way. And it just never was going according to plan sustainably.
When children came, the state of happiness became even more volatile and precarious.
I remember feeling that my heart was a bloody pulp, never having long enough to repair.
In the last several years, through my voyage toward becoming a more self-reliable whole, I got access to glimpses of joy.
This joy is a byproduct of self-expression, a sense of connection to something greater than my immediate surroundings or people in my daily life.
My joy comes from interbeing. A sense of belonging. An interrelating with life and people on a greater scale.
This joy of coming into my nature-given gifts helps me transcend my egoic attachments to people and places and images of how it all is supposed to be like.
Joy is a lasting state, because it does not depend on what happens on the outside, but is more of an inner alignment.
Perfectionism thrives on shame.
When we are ashamed of parts of who we are, we will not show them to others.
Perfectionism breeds in our insecurities.
We hide our soft parts under the polished veneer of perfection.
It’s a sign of insecurity, actually.
To feel safe enough to become visible – requires owning who we are.
And we only own the parts that are pleasing to others, or accepted by others, or are like everyone else.
In the process, we kill off what makes us unique. And suffer from living life as a sliver of who we are.
Daring to be seen is a relationship with oneself.
Do you feel safe to be you?
Feeling safe to become visible requires owning who we are.
We expect the permission to be safe to come from outside, but as with all permissions, it has to come from within.
If we are ashamed of parts of us – we will not show them. And no matter how loving our partner may be – if we don’t learn to love the parts of us that we find hard to love – we will not feel safe to reveal them.
Then we’ll feel unseen in our relationships and blame our partners for their inability to see us, not realizing that no one can see through our armor.
Freedom for me came from owning all parts of me. I used to think safety came from hiding. Now I know that safety comes from no longer needing to hide anything.
We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.
If someone were to tell me 10 years ago what I’d be doing with my life now – I’d have dismissed it as ridiculous.
I’d have said it was so “not me.”
All of my life I shied away from attention on me, except for very specific private occasions.
I had a phobia of technology, and social media seemed completely incomprehensible.
I avoided uncomfortable conversations, especially when it concerned my own relationships.
Taboo subjects were taboo for a reason: best not to be discussed.
I took considerable effort to try to be perfect, which meant I’d never put myself in a situation where I could be visible – because it would make me exposed to criticism, judgment and rejection.
Where I find myself today makes me laugh actually – when I think how different it feels to be me.
Over the years my self-concept has been completely redefined.
I had to step into my power, even if I was kicking and screaming in the process. Power comes with responsibility and so much fear.
I had to remove one by one the protective layers and become visible.
First, dare to write what I feel.
Then to publish it.
Then to post daily, still hiding behind printed words.
Then to start putting myself in front of the camera, allowing people to see me.
Hoping they can see me beyond my appearance, while also integrating so many of the little things about my appearance that I used to judge.
Calling them conversations at first.
Then stepping into my gifts and owning it.
And now – today! – my first group coaching session.
A new way to put my ideas, visions “out there”.
I’m creating a movement:
Safe to Be.
Safe to be Me.
Safe to be You.
Safe to step into our gifts and bring them in service to the collective.
In trust and awe at the intelligence behind it all.
It is time.
We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.
How we treat ourselves is the basis for all our relationships
So many of us suffer from the way we are treated by others.
But in my observation, the way we treat ourselves, the way we speak to ourselves, criticize, judge, and punish ourselves – is where a lot of damage stems from.
I know because several years ago I understood that no one is as mean to me as I am to myself, having internalized every judgment and criticism I’ve ever heard.
Now I observe this in others. Our inner dialogue is cruel and intolerant.
How have I changed since I had my six sessions with Galina?
I have changed in so many aspects that it is difficult for me to put them into words.
The most significant aspect is the change in my assertiveness and in expressing myself.
I used to be a spectator of my life: my energy turns inwards and sometimes can be taken as
a sign of passivity. Which for sure some times in the past happened. To be drowned was
easier than taking steps or my responsibilities. I would blame myself afterward, for not
having the courage to manifest my thoughts or opinions.
Now I take responsibility, I can express in a nonviolent way my meanings and most
importantly, I am an observer of myself and my process.
In the past I would just swim into my emotions, I would feel wrong for feeling in that or this
way, I would feel like I don’t belong and wouldn’t feel understood.
Through Galina’s coaching to reparent myself, of being my own authority, once I have a low
moment, it takes very little effort to recognize the pattern, to see where it comes from and my
response to it. I learned to not judge it and to feel without being lost in it.
In my relationships with others, I can be really present and manifest in my authenticity. I
don’t feel anymore like I need to play a part in order to be accepted: my conversations with
my friends have become deeper, a stronger connection has developed, I can feel and create
a safe space with them and manifesting as I am. In the past I was the listener, now I am
actively participating in the conversation. Some friendships have grown stronger and some
new connections have been created.
Once I discovered my true nature, it became impossible to stand in situations or
environments where my values are not met: in the past I would stay and swallow bad
feelings until my body would become ill. Now I can proudly set my boundaries and not see
them as being selfish.
I wish all of us could experience being our own most important authority, and I will gladly
recommend Galina for those who are ready to start the process and welcome magic in