Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Search for Worldly Perfection

From Becoming Minimalist:
Whether we are talking about the negative effects of pain-relieving medication or any number of other scenarios, the need for perfection often results in negative outcomes on our lives. Not only does it distract us from happiness, it routinely sends us down paths away from it.

The search for perfection in our work may send us jumping from one career to another constantly looking for that one job with no bad days. But that job does not exist—the most beautiful rose still has thorns.

The search for perfection in our relationships causes us to give up too quickly on other people. But there are no perfect people and relationships, at their core, require commitment. Without patience, grace, and faithfulness, there is no opportunity for love.

The search for perfection in our homes often results in the accumulation of unnecessary possessions. Marketers routinely promise comfort and better living in their newest offering. An unhealthy pursuit of perfection makes us more susceptible to their falsehoods. These excess possessions quickly begin to monopolize our time and energy and focus.

The search for perfection in our external image gives rise to unhealthy body image pursuits. Rather than seeing them as instruments through which we accomplish our life’s goals, we begin to see them as ornaments to impress others. Sometimes even, while we never experience perfection in our own minds, we seek to present that reality to the world around us.

The search for perfection in our actions often prevents us from trying new things or experimenting with new skills. By its very nature, the desire to commit no mistakes or ever having to admit failure keeps us from attempting new things in life. But every expert started as a beginner. As noted in The Washington Post article above, the need for perfection may cause harmful addictions to take root in our life, resulting in ruined or destroyed lives. (Read more.)

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