The Tyranny of Fear

I am a perfectionist. I’m intensely uncomfortable with being wrong and making mistakes. That is one of many reasons that I have a hard time sharing my writing and art. I have had it drilled into my head that I can’t mess up or be wrong–EVER. So when I mess up and/or get something wrong, it’s a really, really bad time for me internally. When I step back to look at myself, it’s amazing how much of my self-worth is tied to getting it “right” the first time, every time.

I’m afraid. Every minute of every day, I’m afraid of screwing up. I’m afraid of making mistakes. I’m afraid of getting it (whatever it is) wrong all of the time.

For example, I messed up a crustless quiche this morning. The recipe called for pepper, and I misread the amount. It turned out terrible. I ended up throwing it away after we all tried to eat it. I cried because I wasted perfectly good bacon, eggs, and cheese to make that quiche. A quiche normally is good for two breakfasts, but this was garbage. I pride myself on my cooking, so this was really, really hard on me. Worse, hearing honest critiques of my failure triggered bad memories, which made me cry.

Fear is a tyrant with his boot on my neck. Although I’ll never make that recipe again, the pain and twisting anxiety are still with me. I am trying to push through and do my best in all things, but the fear keeps me from moving forward. I need to figure out how to move it off of me.

Until then, here I am.

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