As a brand-new therapist, only months past graduation; I was feeling overwhelmed, doubting my decision to become a counselor, second-guessing my skill set and filled with anxiety. To complicate the situation even more, I was attending an externship (training) for emotion focused therapy, and I was in the room with some pretty incredible thinkers. My mind was swimming in an ocean of new information, comparative thinking was deflating my emotions, and I was working very hard to maintain an even keel. I was aware of how my thoughts and emotions were impacting me, yet I continued to feel out of sorts.
A kind-hearted psychologist shared these words “Do what you can, with what you have, while on the journey.” His words calmed my soul immediately as my spiraling thoughts began to evaporate.
There’s a difference between perfectionism and excellence. Perfectionism is a cruel task-master that expires our dreams, hopes and expectations. It says “You will never be good enough no matter how hard you try.” So, we give up. Stop trying. Let go. Excellence is a characteristic that inspires and awakens the soul to potential, adventure and self-discovery. It says “Use what you have, while on the journey; you will learn, grow and become the best version of yourself as you keep going forward.” So, we live. We love. We work. We help, knowing each day we are expanding, developing and becoming.
Am I the best therapist in the world? In all humility, no. There is always someone who is more skillful. Do I know everything there is to know? No. There is always a bit more one can learn. Does that mean I quit? No. I show up and do the best that I can.
What comparative thoughts are deflating you? How can you change perfectionistic thinking and embrace the freedom of growing in excellence?
Answer: Do what you can, with what you have, while on the journey…
Rest in knowing each day, you are learning and becoming the person you desire to be. May you find peace and joy “while on the JOURNEY.”
Licensed Professional Counselor