My name is Mandy. And I’m a perfectionist.
I’ve always known that I like things to be just so, particularly things I work on. But yesterday a coworker and I were writing a “You might be a perfectionist if. . .” quiz for an upcoming Bible study for girls—and about 2 questions in, I wanted to throw things.
Do you replay all your mistakes when you’ve had a bad day?
Do you want to do something “just so” or not at all?
Is your worth dependent upon how well you do something?
Do you hate to ask for help?
On and on the questions went, and on and on my answers were yes.
I mean, I’m the person who remembers embarrassing things that happened in elementary school (ELEMENTARY SCHOOL!) and sometimes bring them to mind when I feel like I’ve failed to remind myself how much of a loser I am. I’m the person who will drown sometimes rather than asking for help. I’m the person who needs to realize that maybe perfectionism isn’t a good thing and let go of some of that striving.
So, today, instead of holding onto a project and obsessing over every last detail, I let go of it. I asked for help and let it go out of my hands. And the feeling wasn’t what I expected. Because instead of feeling like I was a failure, it felt a little like freedom.
Or freeing in the least.
Striving for perfection isn’t necessarily a bad thing. We should try to do things to the best of our ability for the glory of our Creator, but perfection doesn’t earn us any more favor or anymore of God’s love. Sometimes, I think what God wants to say to me most is: “Stop! Stop your striving! Just rest in Me!”
It’s the same thing He says in Psalm 46:10 when He encourages us to “Be still and know that I am God.”
And every once in awhile, I finally get the message.