We are thrilled to be featuring a seven-part series of guest posts by coach Donn Rochlin of Living the Creative Life. Check back each week for the next “block”…and advice on overcoming it.
All human beings are born with the gift of creativity. It is either developed or lost through lack of use. Following is the second of seven blocks that often show up for those who choose the creative path. Each block is seeded with an inspirational perspective to give encouragement and hope.
BLOCK #2: PERFECTIONISM
The quest for perfection is bred into most people at an early age. The conventional educational system and even well-meaning parents indoctrinate us with the illusion of perfection. I was taught that if I can conquer success, I’ll will win the affection of parents, friends, teachers, and even complete strangers. Striving for perfection is my ego’s way of finding a home in a terrifying and indifferent world. If I am the best (perfect), then I am safe. I am accepted and I’m good. I learned to value the attainment of perfection as superior to the process itself. I now understand I had it backwards. Performance anxiety is the other edge of the same sword. When I’m glued to the outcome of my performance, I tense up, and I become “self”-conscious and nervous. Performing from this place can only led to a mediocre performance at best. When I am self-conscious I am out of “spirit consciousness” which is the place of joy and service. Only when my performance is not attached to an outcome do I have a great performance! The irony is that I have to let go of caring how I do, to do great! Living the creative life is all about the process, Everything I do is in the moment; I am experimenting; I am collecting data; I am bringing something new to the world; I am working on myself; I’m redefining, editing, proof reading, and recreating myself. I am a work of art in progress. I will never be finished but rest in the knowing that I am perfect now. As creators we must learn to love the feeling that we are never finished.
Donn Rochlin coaches artists, musicians, writers, performers, speakers, and entrepreneurs at Living the Creative Life, and has been a professional musician for over 25 years. You can reach him at 503-539-9153 or donnroc [at] ccountry [dot] net.