“Self-talk is the most important talk you can have”, a paraphrase of a statement I heard Pastor Bernard make several weeks ago during service.
It was one of those sweet peaceful moments of reminiscence, when you don’t even have time to capture the wisdom statement on paper (ha ha or iPad). You just sit there and mediate on how much that statement resonates with your life. You see I have or had this condition called perfectionism. I tried my best to make everything as flawless as possible. For years that was a problem, but now I can say, that was an overzealous Spirit of Excellence that I now have under control.
Today I strive for excellence. I do not let the desire for producing superior results control my very existence in life. Trust me it can become a problem, and it did. When you are a perfectionist you beat yourself far, far worse than anyone ever can, when something does not turn out the way you want. Truth be told, we all can have a touch of perfectionism. Why do I say this? Because we all can be our own worst enemy when something goes awry based on a decision we have made. Understandably so, we were made in the image of God and therefore want everything to turn out right.
But can I step back for a moment? You see perfectionism is a tactic of the adversary. A superiority complex used by the enemy to bring you down; trying to be like God. Isn’t that what got him kicked out of Heaven? Let’s keep it real, he, the adversary, wants us to fall like him. As the scripture tells us, it is okay to be upset about results of a decision. The thing is, don’t do something rash like beating yourself up.
Calm down, take the bitter with the sweet, recover from it and move on to accomplish something else. I said to my tailor once, I made a mistake and messed up this blouse. I was so distraught; I loved that blouse and couldn’t find another like it. He stopped me and said “no, that’s called wisdom.”
Oh my goodness, in past times when I made a negative result producing decision I was horrible. I would say all kinds of things to myself. You’re stupid! How could you do such a thing? What were you thinking? On and on and on I would go. I would shut myself in and would not even answer the phone. I didn’t even want to be seen. I would go into isolation, beating myself up and realistically accomplishing nothing but self-annihilation. Shucks the enemy didn’t have anything to do. I was destroying myself for him, literally! Jesus tells us that loving ourselves is the second greatest commandment.
You cannot love your neighbor unless you love yourself. One of the first things taught before setting sail on a cruise, in the event of having to abandon ship, is to preserve your life first. Properly secure your life jacket before trying to save someone else, or you will become an ineffective rescuer and you and the person you are trying to save will both go down with the ship together.
One of my spiritual mentors taught me, when you have a problem do an autopsy of the situation, learn from the results, bury the situation and move on. Once you understand what skewed the outcome do not keep revisiting the problem in your mind, doing so serves no purpose other than to cause depression. Shake that situation off and rise above it. Thoroughly review the facts surrounding that situation, so that you can obtain the wisdom and prevent reoccurrences of similar consequences.
So I say to you today, stop beating on yourself! Shut that pity party down and forgive yourself! Stop it! Let today be liberation day for you. By all means –- Bury that situation and Move On!