The pursuit of perfection can drive us toward improvement. But it also has a dark side. A side that leads to doubt, frustration, anxiety and a lack of motivation.

Here are some signs that you might be pursuing perfection:

  • You obsess over finding the perfect gym rather than showing up and giving the gym a try.
  • You told yourself that you’d work out five days a week and then gave up training altogether after a week when you only worked out once.
  • You’ve been working out consistently for six months, and you’re bummed because you “still” can’t do a pull-up, muscle-up, push-up, etc.
  • You’re following your training plan to the letter with no room for life to happen, and it’s stressing you out.
  • You feel like you’ve failed when you don’t meet your step count or point goal on your activity tracker.
  • You ate a chocolate chip cookie last night, and today you feel like you’ve blown your whole meal plan.

If any of this sounds familiar, it’s because you’re not alone. There are so many other people like you who have felt the same way or experienced similar thoughts.

This is the dark side of pursuing perfection. And if you recognize yourself in some of these examples, it might be worth considering an imperfect approach to your fitness and performance.

What does imperfection look like?

If you’re no longer in the pursuit of perfection (at the gym, at work or any other goal-driven situation), then what does an imperfect journey look like? It’s not giving up, abandoning your goals or thinking you’ve “gone soft.”

Instead, it might look like a willingness to cut yourself some slack. While discipline and consistency are big parts of making progress toward your goals, so is a willingness to cut yourself some slack. A rigid approach doesn’t allow any space for things to happen that deviate from your plan or what you expect to happen.

If a meeting runs late and you miss your workout, cut yourself some slack. If you leave that space for life to happen, then you’re more likely to come up with an alternative solution. Eating a cookie doesn’t blow your whole nutrition plan. It’s an opportunity for you to enjoy a small treat and then get back to your plan the next chance you get.

Along your fitness journey, you’ll face obstacles and setbacks. When you do, try to shift your focus to what’s been going well and keep looking for those opportunities to get back on track. Progress always over perfection.

To learn more about Rhapsody Fitness in Charleston and our range of programs, get in touch with Team Rhapsody today.