I really struggle with guilt. Things I did years ago still bother me, still make me feel like a horrible person. I try to reconcile that I've grown up, that I'm different, and that really, I AM a good person.
But I still feel like I'm just not good enough. Your classic INFP, I have very idealistic expectations of myself and the world. While I'm usually very forgiving of the shortcomings of others, I have a hard time extending this forgiveness to myself. I feel badly, I want to let things go and sometimes I'm very good at it, but every now and then, it is almost crippling how badly I feel about my own shortcomings.
I have a pretty strict code of right and wrong and a guilty conscience that goes with it. I often struggle with the notion that I can be a very good person without being perfect. I expect a lot of myself and I don't always know how to reconcile this.
Last night I was reading a Joyce Meyer book and she briefly discussed learning to accept ourselves as God accepts us - knowing full well that our flaws are present, but loving us in spite of them. God doesn't approve of our sin, our transgressions but he loves us all the same. It seems like such a simple concept, to be able to separate a person from their actions, but for me, it's hard to do with myself.
As I grow, I'm learning that things don't have to be perfect to be satisfying and fulfilling. My job is not perfect - yet there are stretches of time where things fall into place easily, I tap into my creativity and feel a sense of purpose to what I'm doing. My relationship with Alex isn't perfect either - it's wonderful, but there's no such thing as perfect in my book since he and I are both human beings. But it's still great - he makes me laugh, he makes me think, he makes me feel loved and special. My friends sure aren't perfect, but they love me and I love them.
I'm learning to let go of these perfectionistic expectations, but sometimes it's really hard. It's hard to think that I'm giving up on a task without even trying, but then I remember that I'm not giving up on something normal, I'm redefining my already too high standards. There's nothing wrong with having high standards, but sending them through the roof is often asking for failure, which hereby brings on the guilt. Here's to the learning process . . . **lifts coffee mug**