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Are you a Pilates Perfectionist?

Earlier this week I was teaching a client an exercise they had never done before.

It was harder than than they expected and they were frustrated that their execution of it hadn’t been text book perfect.

It made me wonder why we expect to do every new exercise perfectly, flawlessly and worthy of a beautifully back lit Ig post?

Have we forgotten the joy of learning, making mistakes, practicing and improving? The lost art of being a bit crap at something with the journey being as important as the destination.

Does everything need to be instant?  My kids are learning to play instruments and my son adores cello music, but he is frustrated that he doesn’t sound like the Cello in the Bach concertos we used to play him as a baby.

I explained to him that the concert cellist did not always sound like a concert cellist. When they began, they too would have sounded like a strangled cat until they’d practised for hours and hours, weeks and weeks, years and years.

And unless you keep practising, persisting and improving you will never sound like a concert cellist either. But every time you DO practice and sound like a dying cat you are one step closer to NOT sounding like one.

My own Pilates teacher says that simply holding a start position can be an exercise for some, and I know for a fact that some ‘Wunda’ chair exercises have me shaking before I’ve even moved the damn pedal!

My client and I discussed this and I asked them to give themselves permission to be a beginner again, because although she was an advanced client, she was a beginner at THAT exercise. And that’s ok.

We are allowed to fail, we are allowed to make mistakes and get it wrong because that’s where the learning happens.

Give yourself some slack, take some the pressure off, don’t be afraid to be crap at something. Better to have fun and not be perfect, than miserable and terrified to get it wrong.

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