I am a perfectionist.
It’s incredibly hard to be a perfectionist because nothing is ever good enough. Something always could have been done just a little bit better, or more often than not, things could have been done A LOT better.
Something that I have been thinking about a lot lately is how to break this feeling that everything has to be just so. Nothing in life is ever going to be perfect, so why strive for that? What’s the point to making yourself crazy about something that can literally never happen?
I was talking to my father about all of this because he and I are so similar, and he reminded me of something that he used to tell me a lot when I was younger:
“Someone will always be worse off than you, but someone will always be better than you. It doesn’t matter who you are.”
This sentiment just kept running through my head. I started thinking about how you could measure who was the “best” at something, and the only concrete things that I could come up with to measure the “best” were the Olympic games. At the end of the day somebody takes home the gold, right?
I started thinking even harder about this. I remembered watching the Winter Olympics with my friends this year (something that I don’t usually do). I remembered watching the women’s half pipe (snowboarding) and watching all of those talented women give it their all. I thought about how all of those women were absolutely amazing athletes, and this nagging thought in the back of my mind kept reminding me that one little slip-up could cost them the chance to even place. That one chance could ruin four grueling years of preparation.
This really stuck with me. Some of these women would not get to compete again in their life. They very well could have been more talented than Chloe Kim, who took home the gold medal. She just happened to be the woman who performed the best that day. (Disclaimer: I am absolutely NOT saying that Chloe Kim didn’t deserve that medal. She absolutely killed it.) All that I’m saying is that one detail on that day that was out of place means four years of not being the best for some women.
I guess all this musing is to say that it’s a nice reminder to yourself that someone always has it worse off than you. You never have the worst life imaginable, no matter how terrible it can seem sometimes. On the flip side, it’s humbling to remember that you are never the best. There is always going to be someone who does something better than you.
What are your thoughts?