We all know that if you make a mistake, the best thing to do is own up and apologise for it. Hit your friend in the head with your paddle as you drop into the eddy? Say sorry. Bash into the side of them as you cross an eddy line with a little too much enthusiasm? Say sorry. But what happens when the mistakes you are apologising for are only visible to you? What happens when the only standard you are willing to accept is perfection? Should you continue to say sorry for not being, as seen through your own eyes, ‘good enough’?
It has taken me a long time to realise that I am a perfectionist and an even longer time to admit it. I have found that this personality trait has had a real impact on my paddling, both positive and negative. Learning to cope with my perfectionism is still very much an ongoing process for me but I wanted to share some of my thoughts on here. Ironically this article isn’t perfect and I don’t have all the answers. But maybe it may help someone who is reading this. Equally, anyone reading who has more ideas than me, please do get in touch!