I don't know if there is a more frustrating person out there than the perfectionist. The reason I say that is not only do I know a few, but I am one. The perfectionist demands perfection from themselves and usually those around them, the problem is not just that people let them down, but worse, they let themselves down. And so the vicious cycle continues.
I have learned that I do myself no favors by being this way. The only perfect thing in this world is Jesus, NOT ME. Although sometimes I fancy myself I am I know for a fact I'm not. BEING PERFECT IS NEVER REQUIRED, not even by God. Especially by God. Making a mistake is not the end of the world (unless you're in charge of the nuclear war codes, then please double check.)
Do you want to know the best part of making a mistake? And yes there is one. You learn compassion - for yourself and others. When you are able to let mistakes go you feel your whole body relax. Now, I will be full out honest and tell you my default settings are set to maximum freak out. Not freaking out for me is a learned behavior . One I still learn.
My first lesson in this is to keep my panic to myself. If you freak out, everyone else freaks out too. My next step is to take a deep breath and gather my thoughts. (The little suckers like to run rampant and I can't catch one long enough to make a good decision.)
If it is something I have to make a quick decision on I pray and then I go to the closest trusted person (or call them if necessary). I explain the situation, and sometimes venting or using someone else will give me perspective, and allow me to make a more clear headed decision.
If it doesn't require immediate decision I take a walk. I pray when I do this because God is not only an excellent sounding board, but with prayer God will often direct me. Giving yourself space and time can never be underestimated.
What I'm also learning is that the more I let go the easier it is. When you treat people right and are honest most people are willing to give you a break (especially if you can fix the issue quickly). Of course you will always run into those jerks who won't, but really you have to let that go (I'm really talking to myself here too!).
For those of you like me it can be tough, but you will be so much better off if you can let it go.
Snow (Hey Oh)
by: Red Hot Chili Peppers