Have you ever asked yourself this question?

I have, and I consistently have had the same advice for the past 15 years– Have more fun!

I was quite a serious and disciplined girl from a young age. I was sold the idea that being a good little girl was the right way to be as I was rewarded for being quiet, cleaning my room weekly, straight A’s.  Combine that with intense ballet training, a strict step-father, and an absent biological father, and it led to all work and very little play. Perfectionism is a trap. 

In a world that often glorifies flawlessness, the pursuit of perfection can become an endless maze. Perfectionism, while seemingly noble, often conceals a trap—one that hinders growth, creativity, and even happiness.

The Illusion of Perfection

It’s a cunning illusion, this quest for perfection. It promises an attainable standard but remains ever elusive. Whispering that unless everything aligns flawlessly, it’s not good enough. This mindset infiltrates personal and professional realms, clouding judgment and eroding confidence.

The cruelest trick? Perfectionism’s ability to paralyse action. It instills an overwhelming fear of failure, stalling progress or preventing anything from starting without the certainty of a perfect outcome.

For me, the first revelation struck in the form of a back injury. Nothing like a full stop to make you dig deep and reflect on who you are and where you want to go. I wish I could say I learned that in my twenties, however, I am still often living under the direction of perfectionism. And I am not alone.

80 Percent of Autoimmune Disease Are Female

Because autoimmunity is much more common in women, researchers have suggested it might be an evolutionary relic—immune hypervigilance could have given women a reproductive advantage by improving the chances of a successful pregnancy, even if it came at the cost of increased disease risk. The effects of sex hormones, X chromosomes and different gut microbes may be parts of the answer. More recently, Dr. Gabor Maté argues that women are ‘Society’s shock absorbers’.

Given these personality traits, it shouldn’t be a surprise that women are at higher risk for chronic illness. Stress plays an “incendiary role” in whether or not a genetic predisposition will result in illness.

And the gender gap has been borne out in the research. “Women take twice as many anti-depressants, get 80 percent of autoimmune disease, they get more chronic illness, more chronic pain than men do,” Maté said.

In this video, Dr. Gabor Maté discusses the reason why 80 percent of autoimmune diseases are prone to women. Dr. Maté reveals the hidden variables, societal influences, and biological reasons that contribute to this shocking number.

With the assistance of some chronic pain and fatigue, I am slowly understanding that perfectionism isn’t the answer. Instead, it’s about finding the beauty in imperfection. The genuine beauty lies not in flawlessness but in the imperfect, authentic, and unique. Embracing imperfection liberates us from the suffocating standards we set for ourselves. It allows appreciation for the journey, the growth, and the lessons learned along the way.

This Mindset also Applies to Entrepreneurship

Embracing imperfections isn’t a weakness; it’s a gateway to unlocking creativity, resilience, and innovation.

Here are six steps tailored for entrepreneurs to embrace imperfections and thrive:

  1. Redefine Flaws as Assets: Instead of stumbling blocks, view imperfections as opportunities. Your unique flaws could reveal innovative solutions or unexplored opportunities.
  2. Practice Self-Compassion: Treat setbacks with kindness. Embrace them as part of the learning curve. Self-compassion fuels resilience in the face of challenges.
  3. Adopt a Growth Mindset: Imperfections are stepping stones to growth. Embrace the learning process over the quest for flawlessness. Each misstep is a lesson propelling you forward.
  4. Set Realistic Goals: Aim high but set achievable milestones. Avoid the trap of perfectionism by defining attainable standards that allow room for innovation.
  5. Cultivate Authenticity: Authenticity fosters trust and invites innovation. Embrace your imperfections, creating an environment where creativity thrives.
  6. Celebrate Progress: Recognise success in milestones, not perfection. Celebrate growth, adaptability, and resilience gained from overcoming imperfections.

Embracing imperfections isn’t a setback; it’s a catalyst for growth and innovation. It’s about thriving in the journey, finding joy in progress, and appreciating the beauty of the imperfect.  As an entrepreneur, celebrate the milestones and progress made along the journey. Recognise that success isn’t solely measured by perfection but by the growth, adaptability, and resilience gained through overcoming imperfections.  By applying these steps, you pave the way for a more resilient, creative, and successful entrepreneurial journey.



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