My “Perfect” Blog {Giveaway}

Ok… so here is the deal.

I signed up to write a blog. Just a simple blog, right?

A blog reflecting my reading of The Cure for the “Perfect” Life: 12 Ways to Stop Trying Harder and Start Living Braver by Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory.

It’s now Sunday night. The blog is “due” on Monday morning.

It’s not that I intended to procrastinate, but…well… that’s just what happens.

Always.

And now, the night before, I am stuck struggling to write the “perfect” blog, with the “perfect” opening lines, stories, analogies, and thought provoking words to capture you as my reader.

So…here I am… reading a book to help me overcome my struggles with people-pleasing, perfectionism, performancism, and procrastination, and I am STUCK.

Stuck.

In my attempts to write the perfect blog and please all readers and audiences–because, of course, my value and self-worth is determined by how many likes, comments, and re-posts my blog will receive (it’s not life changing unless it goes viral, right?)–I have allowed the fear of failure to prevent me from writing until the very last minute. Once again. “Perfectionistic Paralysis” and procrastination at its finest.

For years now I have convinced myself that excellence, organization, order, and cleanliness were next to godliness.

“True excellence is simply doing our very best–perfectionism demands a flawless performance at all times.”

I need to be flawless, right?

The Proverbs 31 woman, right? Perfect, right?

Wrong.

“Perfectionism isn’t Christian. It’s just crazy.”

This “craziness” has actually led to craziness. With the birth of three children, full-time work and school, hubby in school full-time, and the feeble attempts to minister and disciple, I lost complete control.

Dishes and laundry piled. Panic attack.

Submission of sub-par school work. Panic attack.

Grocery shopping with the children. Panic attack. (Ok, that one doesn’t really count. Doesn’t everyone have a panic attack while grocery shopping with children?). But, you get the point.

As a student of psychology, I quickly scanned the diagnostic manuals of mental disorders for my official diagnosis. Note to self: Never diagnose your self.

Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder.

Or, was it Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

Or, was it a social phobia?

Or, was it a mood disorder?

The label had to be perfect, right? Just like everything else.

“A perfectionist is not someone who is perfect; it is someone who is miserable, because they can’t get it right.”

Now, please don’t hear me for what I am not saying. I am not challenging or undermining the valid diagnoses of those struggling with real mental illness. Some people have real mental health concerns and should treat them with all seriousness.

But some people… some people like me… need to stop the madness, stop the diagnosis, stop the labeling (my sweet husband has been telling me this for years), and just start living.

Living braver!

“We have to rebel. We have to make choices that are countercultural to our society, our families of origin, and even our churches.”

So, what exactly does this #braverliving look like? And is it even possible? Can I actually rebel?

In their upcoming book, soon to be released, Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory have given me some hope, and through #tinyactsofrebellion I can finally stop trying so hard and finally start living braver.

Tiny acts.

I’m learning to take small steps and rejoice in the tiny acts of rebellion that are freeing me from the bullies of people-pleasing, perfectionism, performancism, and procrastination.

Tiny acts.

Taking joy in the accomplishment of a task, recognizing that the work of my hands brings glory to the Lord–an audience of one–regardless of comments (or no comments) from others around me.

Tiny acts.

Confronting a co-worker who has continually offended me, and establishing boundaries for future interaction.

Tiny acts.

Repeating the mantra, “I am not a bad mother,” even if the dishes are piled high and we are eating grilled cheese sandwiches for the third time this week.

Tiny acts.

Accepting that failure is just a part of progress and growth, so releasing the fear and taking the risk to write more.

Tiny acts.

Publishing a blog that is far from perfect, but honest and real.

“Authenticity is what it takes to battle the bullies.”

Tiny acts.

With each act, each day, and each new chapter in life (and in this book 🙂 ), I am trading my try harder living, rejecting the fear within, embracing the love from above, and living the life of courage and bravery that God has called me to live.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and DO NOT BE AFRAID.” John 14:27


 

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{Giveaway} Win a copy of The Cure for the “Perfect” Life: 12 Ways to Stop Tryin Harder and Start Living Braver by Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory. Share in the comments with us today and one commenter will be selected to win a free copy!

  1. How are you trying hard to have the perfect life?
  2. What do you think is your biggest struggle–people-pleasing, perfectionism, performancism, or procrastination? Why? How does it show?
  3. How do you think this book will help you?

{Read Chapter 1} You can get a taste of this fabulous book by downloading and reading chapter 1 Here.

{Buy the Book} Get your own copy of this amazing book, set to release on August 4th. Pre-order a copy of the book Here.

Can’t wait to hear from you, and have you join me on this #braverliving rebellion.

Mary 🙂

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14 thoughts on “My “Perfect” Blog {Giveaway}

  1. Your article is really inspiring. In the storm of our daily lives, I think we often forget how to enjoy small pleasures and how to relieve stress and social pressure. We (too often) forget that not everything has to be perfect for our lives to be filled with joy and happiness. I feel very pressured in my everyday life (can’t make mistakes at work, have to keep the house clean, have to workout-look-good-take-care-of-myself, have hobbies, be creative (ON DEMAND!), etc.) A book like that one would probably help me stop for a moment, and appreciate life for what it is.

  2. I definitely want to impress people with my “perfect living.” Well actually, I did, but I don’t so much any more. Now I am practicing honest living and talking about it. I confess that I sleep in. I admit I don’t want to do any work. I come clean about watching multiple episodes of my favorite TV show in the middle of the day. This honest living is setting me free to celebrate each task I complete and even brag a little. I am building friendships with others who also have decided to take care of themselves, and be themselves, and let go of needing to impress others. Hallelujah!

  3. Mary, I’ve discovered that when we appear perfect, we don’t touch people’s lives. When we’re honest about our short-comings, struggles, and mis-steps, people can relate and we can better encourage and pour in to each others lives. Thank you for being that brave! I can very much relate to putting something off because I know it won’t be perfect. I’m learning, tiny step by tiny step at a time, to get done what I can when I can and it will be okay. Perfect or not.

  4. Mary, you are brave! Your blog is the first to go live! Wow, no pressure. LOL! I did the same thing – waiting until the night before mine is due.
    Beautiful job, honest, real! Thanks for being yourself and letting go!

  5. I think I could have written this article… whew! I know exactly how you feel.
    Bravo, job well done! Loved every word of it!

  6. I read Cheri’s blog; I didn’t think this book applied to me. I’m older and rather removed from the hustle and bustle stage of life. Then I read, “A perfectionist is not someone who is perfect; it is someone who is miserable, because they can’t get it right.” Hmmm, that would be me and everyday life. And then there is procrastination… I’m going to read Chapter 1 now, maybe this book is really a lifesaving coach for me. Thank you for your honesty, Mary.

  7. I delay all my posts as well. I procrastinate. What if this post isn’t good enough? Why don’t people other than spammers comment on my posts? It really takes all the fun out of writing doesn’t it?

    That will be part of my focus with living more bravely – writing more posts and actually hitting ‘publish’, writing more posts for my facebook pages, etc. I’ll just begin with my Tiny Acts and I’ll get there!

  8. I really enjoyed reading your post! My perfectionist tendencies blew up in my face after becoming a mother 15 months ago. Giving birth to my son was the happiest moment of my life but as the months progressed things became very unbalanced. I was losing my happiness because I was struggling to live up to all of my unrealistic ideals. I like your point about the “tiny acts of rebellion”. They may seem minor to an onlooker but to a perfectionist they are life-givers! A tiny act for me would be blogging every day. This doesn’t give me time to be meticulous about each and every word. Another tiny act would be inviting a friend over when I haven’t had time to clean my house…and not apologizing for the mess! (This was suggested to me by my psychologist). Thanks for sharing!

  9. Wow Mary. I really needed this today. As I sit in the office trying, struggling through angry tears and negative thoughts, goals and desires to get it right the first time, 100% success, no failed attempts I am reminded once again… WRONG all wrong. The goal is not perfection and if I stop for a second I know that bit I don’t live it. Great blog. Thanks for touching my life once more. 🙂

  10. Hey Mary,
    I tried to comment on this the first day, but my Kindle wouldn’t cooperate.
    I loved reading this and feeling your sweet true self just shining through so honestly and openly. Thank you for saying the thoughts that bang around in my head each time I sit down to write. Thank you for helping all of us see what a tremendous gift this book is!

  11. Pingback: Confronting my P-Bullies {Part 1} and My “Perfect” Blog {Winner} | Super Woman Syndrome

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