The second and third words in that statement are a trap. By using the words “should” and “always” you are saying that it is your obligation and duty to look your best at all times and if you don’t, well then, you have failed. Don’t get me wrong, I love to look nice and it feels great to look nice, but it doesn’t feel so great to feel like I always have to. Expecting yourself to always look your best is unrealistic and unreasonable. Worst of all, it sets you up for failure. And anyway, “looking your best” is strictly subjective because you are comparing yourself to your own rules and standards; not anyone else’s. The other thing to keep in mind is if you don’t expect others to look their best at all times, why are you expecting it of yourself?
When you find yourself thinking this way, ask yourself the following questions:
Why have I burdened myself with this obligation?
What do I expect will happen if I don’t look my best?
What might happen if I cant look my best?
How will I know that I look my best?
Is there anyone who can possibly look their best at all times?
Do I require other people to look their best at all times?
Would I judge a friend harshly if they had a hair out of place, their clothes didn’t look flattering, or they had a blemish? (I hope not!)
When you catch yourself thinking this way, try to speak out against your perfectionism. Talk back to your self-criticism with statements like, “I like to look nice, but I could loosen up my standards a bit.”, “Nobody but me ever expects me to look better than I do.”, “I’m the only one putting pressure on myself to look better.”, “I need to accept the way I look instead of fighting against it.”, and “I don’t need to look exceptional and perfect all off the time.”
Happy Friday, everyone!