by Matt Kahn
A question showed up recently in The End of Self-Doubt forum that brought up the topic of perfectionism and how it relates to self-doubt. It’s interesting how, on the surface, perfectionism and self-doubt seem like quite different things—yet on closer inspection it becomes clear that they are intrinsically connected, like two sides of the same coin.
They both stem from the same place—an essential belief that how we behave determines whether we are worthy or unworthy of love—a core belief that there is a good and a bad way to be.
We begin to believe, with good evidence, that unless we do what makes the people around us happy, we’ll be punished, pushed away, or completely abandoned.
And so, we strive for perfection. We do our very best to become what each person we encounter desires in an effort to constantly prove that we are lovable. We attempt to crack the constantly changing code of what to do, say, and be in social situations—often feeling misunderstood, unaccepted, or unseen on the other side.
A lifetime of conflicting information about what that perfect version of ourselves “should be” eventually becomes a prison.
Coincidentally, the head guards of this prison are self-doubt and the inner critic—both there to tell us all the ways our thoughts, actions, or emotions are proof that we are somehow unworthy of love any time we step out of line with the unattainable vision of perfection that has been inserted into our perception.
And so the question was asked “What standard do we hold ourselves to, if not perfection?”
My response is, “The standard of excellence.”
When we shift our perspective away from the prison bars of perfectionism and to a standard of excellence, everything changes.
Excellence, the way I’ve come to know it, is not about achieving a perfect outcome or trying to mold ourselves into someone or something that attempts to prove our worthiness. Instead, it is about moving through life in alignment with our deepest core values and integrity, regardless of the outcome.
Many of those who have behaved “perfectly” in the eyes of their authority figures while disregarding their authentic feelings have been those responsible for some of the greatest cruelties in human history.
Those who strove for the highest level of excellence by living in integrity with their moral compass, even when it meant facing incredible adversity by doing so, are those we remember as true embodiments of love and courage in human form.
By lifting our perception out of the confines of perfectionism, and into the light of excellence as we align with our authentic expression of divinity, we free ourselves from the shackles of self-doubt and inner criticism that perfectionism imposes upon us.
When you act in integrity with your authentic core values, there’s no need to doubt yourself. The voice of inner criticism is silenced by the warm blanket of divine encouragement. The prison door is open. You are free.
It has been such a beautiful journey diving deeply into the nuanced territory of self-doubt, inner criticism, and perfectionism with our new course, The End of Self-Doubt. If you feel the inner calling to step out of these limiting patterns and into the freedom and joy that is our natural state of being, enrollment is open until tomorrow night.
Join now to get instant access to all the video and workbook course materials, and to receive access to the two live online interactive Q&A events that I will be hosting during this session of The End of Self-Doubt.