As a recovering perfectionist, it has become clear that my identity has been wrapped in failure, or should is say fear of failure. This has meant failure had become part of my identity. It is time for me to declare, ”Failure is not my identity.”
I would see myself as a failure if I let someone down. I would see myself as a failure if someone was angry with me. I would see myself as a failure if I made a mistake. My perfectionism was wrapped up in failure. They were intricately intertwined.
We looked down on him, thought he was scum.
But the fact is, it was our pains he carried—
ourdisfigurements, all the things wrong with us.
We thought he brought it on himself,
that God was punishing him for his own failures.
But it was our sins that did that to him,
that ripped and tore and crushed him—our sins!
He took the punishment, and that made us whole.
Through his bruises we get healed.
We’re all like sheep who’ve wandered off and gotten lost.
We’ve all done our own thing, gone our own way.
And God has piled all our sins, everything we’ve done wrong,
on him, on him. (Isaiah 53:4-6 MSG).
I had taken on an identity that was never mine to own. Failure is not my identity. My identity is in Christ. The one who took on all my sins, my failures and declared me healed. It is work to remind myself this in the midst of day to day life. As soon as the internal sinking feeling starts to creep in, I lean on Christ. I ask for clarity. I remind myself whose I am. I do the work to keep my identity in Christ.
To create new neural pathways or to change our minds, it takes telling ourselves the truth daily for at least 66 days. I need to declare daily that I am a beloved child of God. To keep my identity rooted in Christ, I need to stay focused on my relationship with Christ.
Sometimes healing through Christ is instantaneous. I have experienced it. More often God calls me to do the work, to rely on Him over and over as I become transformed. Laying down perfectionism has been that kind of work. It has been worth every minute of it as I have slowly become more of the person God calls me to be.
Are you ready to say, “Failure is not my identity?” Are you ready to put down perfectionism? Are you becoming the person God is calling you to be? Share your experience here and breathe life and bring hope to others.