• Georgina Russell

More on Understanding Perfectionism...

One thing for sure is that perfectionism is a hard taskmaster. It is a crushing burden to carry.

Some people develop perfectionism by the unconscious decisions made in childhood, which become deeply held beliefs and behaviors.

How does this happen?

  • Genetics and experiences play a part in the development of the personality

  • There may be pressure from parents and teachers to reach unrealistic expectations

  • A lack of affirmation - we all long for a ‘well done’

  • Living with high achieving parents or family members, particularly if they never acknowledge their own failures and struggles

  • Messages that we are ‘not quite good enough’

  • Social influences from all around us

Our experiences can often become projected onto our relationship with God; He becomes the hard taskmaster. However, He says that He loves us unconditionally; He approves of you and delights over you with gladness. Zephaniah 3 v.17

Jesus had problems with the Pharisees who demanded unobtainable high standards from people to pass the ‘Godliness Test.’

God want us to be the best version of ourselves - we are ‘wonderfully and fearfully made’ - but He does not expect perfection. God wants us to put our relationship with Him before rules. Read what God says about you!

If the voice you hear is hard and driving, then it is not from God. His voice is gentle, leading and affirming.

Read Isaiah 40 v.11 He is the Good Shepherd.

Ephesians 1 v.6 says ‘we are accepted in the beloved’. Don’t you just love that way of putting it?


  • Be aware of your own ‘ought’s’ and ‘shoulds’, such as ‘I’m the leader of the team so shouldn’t be seen to make errors’. Write them down, think about where they come from and question them.

  • Look at your own deeply held beliefs, such as ‘people should always be on time’, etc.

  • Accept that however far you progress in life, you will always be dependant on Jesus’ grace.

  • Accept there really are no perfect families or people.

  • Rephrase ‘perfect’ to ‘good enough’.

  • Praise yourself and others even when less than perfect.

  • Laughter is good medicine; laughter releases stress and improves your mood. Learn to laugh at your own and other’s funny ways!

Proverbs 17 v.22