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Perfectionism Is Stopping Your Long-Term Success

January 31, 20243 min read

“One learns from books and example only, that certain things can be done. Actual learning requires that you do those things” - Frank Herbert

Let's improve your performance long-term

This blog is designed to continue your psychological journey from the perspective of sports nutrition. I hope this text encourages you to consider or even question how you currently think. I would like to ask you to read this email with a view of being open to change (or at least being flexible in your way of thinking) as it may just help improve your performance long-term.

As a Nutrition for Energy blog reader you undoubtedly set high standards for yourself, always striving for excellence. While aiming for greatness is commendable and as you probably know I love a BHAG (big hairy audacious goal), I wanted to touch on a topic that might resonate with many of us—perfectionism.

Image of a hexagonal cubes not fitting into a perfect honeycomb structure with the word Perfectionism written above

Perfectionism and your health

Perfectionism can be a double-edged sword, especially when it comes to our fitness, health and nutrition journeys. On one hand, it pushes us to set ambitious goals, as we can see in our mind’s eye a vision of ourselves doing everything required of us to succeed. On the other hand, it can create a roadblock, hinder our progress, or stop us from starting in the first place.

The quest for perfection can often lead to unrealistic expectations. For example, maybe you get hit by a wave of motivation and decide, “Next week I am making changes, I will cook everything from scratch, get that extra session in first thing and start that meditation app I downloaded a month ago.” This all or nothing, perfect or bust approach is not sustainable and can lead to burnout.

Perfectionism could also stop you trying for fear of not measuring up, or letting yourself down. Why try a new recipe when you know you are good at making the current ones?

Why is progress better than perfection

Consider this: progress is not always a linear path, and it's perfectly okay to embrace the journey, bumps and all. In fact, those so-called "imperfections" or "failures" are often the stepping stones to growth and success. They provide valuable lessons, shape our resilience, and contribute to a more fulfilling experience overall.

So, here's a friendly reminder to cut yourself some slack. Celebrate the small victories, acknowledge the effort you put in, and understand that it's okay NOT to be perfect. Your journey is uniquely yours, and every step, no matter how small, is a stride toward your goals.

If you've been feeling stuck or overwhelmed by the pursuit of perfection, it might be time to reassess your approach. Be prepared to shift your focus from perfection to progress. Break free from the constraints of self-imposed standards and rediscover the joy and fulfilment that comes from embracing the process.

If you want to have confidence that your process is moving you toward your goal, then I suggest considering the Nutrition for Energy Performance Accelerator coaching programme. My tip... act now, instead of waiting for the “perfect moment”.

Energetically

James

blog author image

James Oliver Hudson

James Oliver Hudson is the founder of Nutrition for Energy, registered sports nutritionist qualified in motivational interviewing coach focusing on long-term behaviour change.

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NFE SPORT NUTRITION Q&A BLOGS

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Perfectionism Is Stopping Your Long-Term Success

January 31, 20243 min read

“One learns from books and example only, that certain things can be done. Actual learning requires that you do those things” - Frank Herbert

Let's improve your performance long-term

This blog is designed to continue your psychological journey from the perspective of sports nutrition. I hope this text encourages you to consider or even question how you currently think. I would like to ask you to read this email with a view of being open to change (or at least being flexible in your way of thinking) as it may just help improve your performance long-term.

As a Nutrition for Energy blog reader you undoubtedly set high standards for yourself, always striving for excellence. While aiming for greatness is commendable and as you probably know I love a BHAG (big hairy audacious goal), I wanted to touch on a topic that might resonate with many of us—perfectionism.

Image of a hexagonal cubes not fitting into a perfect honeycomb structure with the word Perfectionism written above

Perfectionism and your health

Perfectionism can be a double-edged sword, especially when it comes to our fitness, health and nutrition journeys. On one hand, it pushes us to set ambitious goals, as we can see in our mind’s eye a vision of ourselves doing everything required of us to succeed. On the other hand, it can create a roadblock, hinder our progress, or stop us from starting in the first place.

The quest for perfection can often lead to unrealistic expectations. For example, maybe you get hit by a wave of motivation and decide, “Next week I am making changes, I will cook everything from scratch, get that extra session in first thing and start that meditation app I downloaded a month ago.” This all or nothing, perfect or bust approach is not sustainable and can lead to burnout.

Perfectionism could also stop you trying for fear of not measuring up, or letting yourself down. Why try a new recipe when you know you are good at making the current ones?

Why is progress better than perfection

Consider this: progress is not always a linear path, and it's perfectly okay to embrace the journey, bumps and all. In fact, those so-called "imperfections" or "failures" are often the stepping stones to growth and success. They provide valuable lessons, shape our resilience, and contribute to a more fulfilling experience overall.

So, here's a friendly reminder to cut yourself some slack. Celebrate the small victories, acknowledge the effort you put in, and understand that it's okay NOT to be perfect. Your journey is uniquely yours, and every step, no matter how small, is a stride toward your goals.

If you've been feeling stuck or overwhelmed by the pursuit of perfection, it might be time to reassess your approach. Be prepared to shift your focus from perfection to progress. Break free from the constraints of self-imposed standards and rediscover the joy and fulfilment that comes from embracing the process.

If you want to have confidence that your process is moving you toward your goal, then I suggest considering the Nutrition for Energy Performance Accelerator coaching programme. My tip... act now, instead of waiting for the “perfect moment”.

Energetically

James

blog author image

James Oliver Hudson

James Oliver Hudson is the founder of Nutrition for Energy, registered sports nutritionist qualified in motivational interviewing coach focusing on long-term behaviour change.

Back to Blog

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