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Changing Your State of Mind

"My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness." 2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV

Salvador Dali said, “Have no fear of perfection—you’ll never reach it.”

Perfectionism is nothing more than pride in disguise. I’ve worked with songwriters who were afraid to finish songs because they couldn’t bear to be critiqued. They would claim perfectionistic tendencies. But it was really a fear of rejection. If they never finished anything, they never risked rejection. That’s simple math, but it kept them from becoming the songwriters they wanted to be.

Anything worth doing in life requires some measure of risk. The fears we feel when stepping out to do things we’ve never attempted are rooted in our fears around failing. We’ll never win if we’re unwilling to fail. Failure is a stepping stone to success as we learn how to achieve the results we desire. Waiting until you can do something perfectly before you even try is like an infant deciding it won’t try to crawl or walk before it can run a marathon.

The willingness to look foolish while learning is the antidote to our prideful perfectionism. Admitting we don’t know how to do something is the first step to becoming a master at it. Developing a greater sense of humility and the willingness to risk are the keys to unlocking a better life. We can use them as we learn to have more effective conversations with our spouse or become a better employee or parent. The next time you say you’re a perfectionist, ask yourself what you’re afraid of.

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