Lack of “Perfection” Does not Equal Weakness
I hear and see this all day. It is nearly unavoidable, this portrayal of perfection. Whether you see it on a perfectly curated Instagram reel, overhear parents sharing how perfect their children are, or seeing airbrush pictures on magazines. We are surrounded by the reminder of anything less than perfect is a weakness and pretty much means you are failing.
To this I laugh out loud, because when you truly break this “perfection” down, it is just laughable. But I would be lying if I didn’t share with you that I have to mentally talk myself out of some of the visuals I see and stories I hear. Who deemed this definition of the “prefect life”, “perfect diet”, “perfect body” or “perfect children”? People have always and continue to chase perfection. And friends, that simply does not exist in the real world.
How does this relate to wellness? Oh my goodness in so many ways! I have met with many clients that think that if they do not do their wellness plan perfectly then they are a failure. I have met with clients that have had success , but then anything off their plan equals failure and they will spiral back to where they were before.
I believe that wellness is so much more than what we eat or how we move. This mental part of wellness is where things get hard, but it is so worth digging into and putting in the work. Some people in my field only do perfection, they will not have a glass of wine, indulge in chips and salsa or will never give their kids sugar. Listen I am pretty firm in that I live a healthful lifestyle 80-90% of the time, but that other 10-20 percent is not what the world would consider perfect, but I think it is the “perfect” demonstration of life.
In my book , “The Reset Method” I talk about kissing society’s definition of perfection goodbye. Just stop. No one meal is going to make or break your wellness journey. If that one meal becomes a habit , then that’s when we step back and re- evaluate. The reality of life is that we will never be the perfect, student, mom, employee, or friend. That is why we are here on this earth. We need to learn to grow. With your wellness journey you need to learn that perfection does not exist. If you force yourself into what someone else deems perfect than you are going to be on the struggle bus. I don’t know about you, but the struggle bus is not a place I would like to stay.
The weight loss field is one that is bringing in millions of dollars a year. Most do not promote gradual, healthful changes. They promote this fast track, no mistakes, weight loss path. I see parents teach children they should not cut in lines and they should wait their turn, but then I see those same parents want to skip that wellness line straight to weight loss. Why as adults do we think this is right? You must take care of your foundation before seeing changes. Your foundation is simple healthy habits.
We have lost all gray areas in wellness. I see this more than ever these days with the “science” debates. So much of science is gray. So much of wellness is gray. When we set things up as black or white in wellness, all or nothing, we see many unhealthful habits being developed. Where is the middle ground? We have lost all ability to value that middle ground, that healthy balance. I have posted on this before, the judgement I have received for letting our boys own their health and make mistakes with sugar, processed foods, etc. but how else are they going to learn this middle ground. You have to connect how food makes you feel and what is your “perfection”. Shocking, it doesn’t have to be the exact same as others. I don’t have to shout from the rooftops every time I eat a salad or the boys make healthful choices. I want them to make choices for their bodies not for likes and claps. The reality is you and your children do not live in a perfect bubble of a world. We must stop projecting perfection with wellness.
So often if people can control every aspect of their lives they have success in their wellness plan. They skip dinners with friends, they bring their own packaged foods, they create an unhealthy amount of stress around just living. Life is not a petri dish with every aspect controlled. If anything this year has taught us is that you must have wellness in times that you are not completely in control. You must give yourself flexibility to find out what truly works for your body. You must allow your children to learn and to make mistakes, so they can start making that connection. This is not to say I let mine go crazy. At home I control what comes in the house. They are aware of when they have gone over their sugar limits when they have had too many treats at the ball field or just over the weekend. Most always they will say Mom, “I want to eat really clean tomorrow.” The goal is that they will learn to love their bodies, that they will make healthful choices because of how those nutrient dense foods make them feel. There will be no guilt or shame around making less than healthful choices because they have been taught the art of resetting body, mind and spirit.
You have 21 meals a week to make nutrient dense food choices. Aim to make at least 17 of those meals solid nutrient dense meals. Then you have 4 other meals to add some flexibility. You don’t have to make 21/21 meals on point. If you do then awesome, but if you would like to go to dinner with friends and have wine at a meal, then do it. If you want to have ice cream with your kids then have it. Just know that you do not need to be “perfect” to be Healthy. Find your wellness that works for you body. Stick to my magic three, be cautious of processed foods and enjoy life!
Wishing you Love, Health and Happiness!