top of page

Want it straight to your inbox?

Thanks for subscribing!

The Power of Living Wholeheartedly: An Antidote to Perfectionism

This week, 'Therapy Begins with Tea' steeps on perfectionism and offers a body based check-in to practice living wholeheartedly.


Therapy Begins with Tea is a weekly newsletter based on the themes that come up in my sessions as a therapist who specializes in imposter syndrome, attachment styles in romantic relationships, and our psychological relationships with money. Each week consists of a 'steep' in thought reflection, an accompanying body based check-in, and tea card intentions for the week to come.

'Steep' in Thought (3-5 min)

perfectionism is stealthy & insatiable

After an unexpected hiatus in January, ‘Steep’ in Thought is especially personal to me this week. As some of you know, I’ve been recovering from a surgery turned medical emergency. And as I’m getting back on my feet & starting to work again, I’ve felt increasingly guilty about not picking back up with this newsletter, each week chastising myself for not planning ahead & for not following through on what I should be doing. Perfectionism had crawled in & reared its ugly impeccably coifed head. Do you know that feeling? 

Perfectionism is stealthy and insatiable, isn’t it? We work hard to meet -- and exceed -- expectations in our jobs and in the roles we play in life. And we become really good at it. So much so that we stop considering it ‘exceeding’ and more ‘assumed’; over and over, we keep raising the standard for ourselves and the weight of that pressure can be overwhelming because it doesn’t allow for flexibility.

leaning into wholeheartedness

This time of year is when the pressure of perfectionism can really hit us. We’ve set goals & expectations for the year ahead, but the hopeful high of new year’s day has worn off and our resolutions might not be happening the way we want them to. And if that’s you, you’re far from alone -- close to 50% of people ‘fail’ their new year’s resolutions by February. 

So if you’re in that same boat, or you struggle with perfectionism more generally, this question is for you: what would it be like to live in a way that focuses less on perfection and more on wholeheartedness? To be more discerning & intentional about what we want to put our heart into and then committing to those decisions and roles in a way that aligns with our intrinsic values and our integrity, rather than external pressure & expectation? And since perfectionism is insatiable, it’s a losing battle to constantly try to achieve & maintain it; but the practice of living wholeheartedly is about the process, not the outcome. It allows for unexpectedness & the quirks of life to happen without derailing us.

This one is a reminder for myself and an invitation for you to try out too. If you’re interested, check out the full body check-in below. Let’s live wholeheartedly this week.

Full Body Check-In (2-4 min)

Start with the breath.  Feel how it goes in through your nose on the inhale & leaves through the mouth on the relaxed exhale. Notice what happens when you breathe in. What sensations you feel, which parts of your body move, how they move. And then repeat with the breath out. Is there a part that feels most enjoyable? Maybe it’s the energizing refresh of the breath coming in. Maybe it’s the peaceful sinking feeling in your belly as you exhale.

On the inhale, invite your perfectionist part forward. Observe what images, thoughts, memories come to mind. Notice what happens in your body. Does it tense up or constrict? Does the tempo of your thoughts, or your heart rate, increase?  

On the next exhale, breathe out the perfectionism and invite wholeheartedness forward. Observe what images, thoughts, memories come to mind. Notice any changes in your body. Does it loosen? Does the tempo of your thoughts, or your heart rate, change? Which state brings more confidence? Which brings more peace? 

Want this straight to your inbox? Sign up for the newsletter to receive weekly steeps, body check-ins, and tea card intentions for the week to come.


bottom of page