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The Pursuit of Excellence and the Pitfalls of Perfectionism
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The Pursuit of Excellence and the Pitfalls of Perfectionism

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Presentation for parents by Patrick Carruth and Jeff Gephart

Presentation for parents by Patrick Carruth and Jeff Gephart

Published in: Spiritual, Sports

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  • 1. PERFECTIONISM IN OUR CHILDREN?
  • 2. PERFECTIONISM IN US?
  • 3. "You can see that the problem with perfectionism begins when we move beyond the legitimate pursuit of excellence to live under the tyranny of believing that perfection is possible and failures are unacceptable. Standards of productivity, accomplishment or appearance are so high that they are impossible to attain.
  • 4. When our self-worth and self-respect depend on reaching those standards, the result is an inevitable script for self-defeat: one’s own personal hell of repeated failure, self-criticism and depression. Notice that it is the degree of intensity with which we pursue impossible goals, and the degree to which we feel that our worth is dependent on reaching those goals, that defines the difference between healthy and unhealthy perfectionism." (pg. 36 Perfecting Ourselves to Death by Richard Winter)
  • 5. “…the problem with perfectionism begins when we move beyond the legitimate pursuit of excellence to live under the tyranny of believing that perfection is possible and failures are unacceptable. “
  • 6. EXCELLENCE IN THE CLASSICAL WORLD
  • 7. PLATO AND ARISTOTLE
  • 8. NICHOMACHAEN ETHICS
  • 9. VIRTUE Meaning a "moral life and conduct, moral excellence," from Latin virtus meaning "moral strength, manliness, valor, excellence, worth," from vir meaning "man or husband". The four classical virtues: Temperance Justice Prudence Courage
  • 10. EUDAIMONIA Means "producing or maintaining happiness with an objectively desirable life.“ Literally means “having a good or guardian spirit (eu + daimon).
  • 11. ARÊTE Is an important concept in Greek philosophy, generally meaning "virtue, excellence," especially of “manly” qualities; lit. "that which is good." The superlative is aristos (best), from which we get the word aristocracy (aristo + kratos). Fulfilling potential Life long journey Effort not intellect
  • 12. PAIDEIA From the Greek pais, paidos. The upbringing of a child (similar to the words pedagogy and pediatrics). It is the equivalent of the Latin humanitas (from which we get the humanities), signifying the general learning that should be the possession of all human beings. Paideia meant the process of educating man into his true form, the real and genuine human nature. David Naugle
  • 13. PAIDEIA The classical Greek system of education and training, which came to include gymnastics, grammar, rhetoric, poetry, music, mathematics, geography, natural history, astronomy and the physical sciences, history of society and ethics, and philosophy—the complete pedagogical course of study necessary to produce a well-rounded, fully educated citizen.” Richard Tarnas, The Passion of the Western Mind, pp. 29-30.
  • 14. PAIDEIA The True The Good The Beautiful The making of the human (humanitas), not the training of men
  • 15. PHILIPPIANS 3:12-15 12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.
  • 16. PHILIPPIANS 3:12-15 But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
  • 17. PHILIPPIANS 3:12-15 15 All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. 16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.
  • 18. I Am the Kite I am the kite: Red and orange, Fire in the sky, Stunt Kite, Cutting loops And gashes in the blue, My skin vibrates On my frame with power.
  • 19. I Am the Kite (cont’d) I cut the cord To fly yet higher still, To show the rest What freedom's all about. I turn and twist My fanciest curl And set my course For distance.
  • 20. I Am the Kite (cont’d) But, my mistake Was not To take the wind for granted, But the cord That tensioned me To one I did not see So far below. The flyer is not me.
  • 21. I Am the Kite (cont’d) Lord, give me the anchor. Give me pause. Let me know in freedom's limited flight, The kite's first cause. Bruce Barton Bailey Sunday, May 29, 1994
  • 22. PERFECTIONISM VS. EXCELLENCE FROM JEFF BAAS Being Wrong PERFECTIONISM is the fear of being wrong. EXCELLENCE is the willingness to be wrong and to learn from it. Not Measuring Up PERFECTIONISM is fear that others might think you don’t measure up. EXCELLENCE is a desire to be the best you can be. Freedom PERFECTIONISM is confining. EXCELLENCE is freeing.
  • 23. PERFECTIONISM VS. EXCELLENCE Openness PERFECTIONISM is closing yourself off. EXCELLENCE is opening yourself up. Direction PERFECTIONISM is remaining right where you’ve always been. EXCELLENCE is a journey of discovery. Improvement PERFECTIONISM is fearing something unpleasant will come from your efforts. EXCELLENCE is an excitement over the improvements that you will help discover.
  • 24. REALIZE We are fallen Image Bearers and the inability to perfect ourselves We live in the present by grace, without fear of past or future
  • 25. OBSERVE AND EMPHASIZE Watch for signs in self and children Emphasize process instead of outcome Emphasize character development over appearance or performance The work of Christ and the pull of Grace toward excellence
  • 26. "Humility, which involves losing our self-sufficiency, is a secret of soul rest because it does not presume to secure outcomes.“ Dallas Willard from Renovation of the Heart
  • 27. When You Come Back Down music and lyrics by Nickel Creek You got to leave me now, you got to go alone You got to chase a dream, one that's all your own Before it slips away When you're flyin' high, take my heart along I'll be the harmony to every lonely song That you learn to play
  • 28. When you're soarin' through the air I'll be your solid ground Take every chance you dare I'll still be there When you come back down When you come back down
  • 29. I'll keep lookin' up awaitin' your return My greatest fear will be that you will crash and burn And I won't feel your fire I'll be the other hand that always holds the line Connectin' in between your sweet heart and mine I'm strung out on that wire
  • 30. And I'll be on the other end To hear you when you call Angel, you were born to fly And if you get too high I'll catch you when you fall I'll catch you when you fall
  • 31. Your memory's the sunshine every new day brings I know the sky is calling Angel, let me help you with your wings
  • 32. When you're soarin' through the air I'll be your solid ground Take every chance you dare I'll still be there When you come back down
  • 33. Take every chance you dare I'll still be there When you come back down When you come back down