Perfectionism is a killer. It kills fun. It kills joy. It kills anticipation. I cannot remember a time when it wasn't looking over my shoulder, nudging me and saying, "Not like that! Do it this way! Do it right!" Sometimes it used the voice of a teacher or a parent, sometimes a friend or a mentor. Eventually, horridly, it's come to use my own inner voice (or one of them) against me, pushing, prodding, demanding, always having a better idea, a better way of doing that to which I'm currently setting my hand. I hate it. I despise it. I would like to strip it naked and abandon it in a blizzard somewhere in a wilderness so bleak and barren there are not even wolves around to shorten its dying agonies.
The problem with attacking anything that has wormed its way into becoming a part of us (or our perceived and/or operational identities), is that we can't do it without taking a bloody hunk out of ourselves. Every withering word we chuck in the direction of that snobby little shoulder critic cuts a curve like a boomerang and whacks us in the back of the head, usually wounding some more vulnerable self-aspect that didn't deserve it at all while the perfectist snickers, "That's what you get, you bumbling fool."
There is a way of unmanning the little bugger, though.
Cindy: (Rolling out biscuit dough for the girls' breakfast)
Perfectionism: You should be feeding them bacon and eggs. This is little more than paste with lard in it.
Cindy: They don't eat eggs; bacon takes too long.
Perfectionism: You're rolling that dough too thin.
Cindy: (Humming, picks up biscuit cutter, pauses thoughtfully, then poises it over the middle of the dough and begins to lower it.)
Perfectionism: Wait a minute! You should start at the outside edges!
Cindy: (Smiling, continues to lower biscuit cutter.)
Perfectionism: No! You'll waste dough that way! You're doing it all wrong! The edges! The edges!
Cindy: (Widens smile, very deliberately presses cutter into center of dough.)
Perfectionism: (Near hysteria) What are you doing?!?!? You're doing it on purpose!!!!
Cindy: (Gleefully and enthusiastically cuts biscuits totally at random.)
Perfectionism: Arrrrgh!!! (Runs screaming from room.)
A most satisfactory way to start the morning, I assure you.