Soon to release her first album in over a decade, the singer has revealed the lesson she has learned about perfection after being too hard on herself.
Mandy Moore just did her first proper show on stage in almost 13 years.
On Saturday night, fans queued down the street outside the Bootleg Theater in LA, where the singer debuted some of the new music from her upcoming album, Silver Landings, ahead of its official release on 6 March.
In short: the performance was a hit. The crowd even called for an encore, and to their delight, they got one in the form of her 1999 hit Candy.
And yet, when Moore got off the stage, all she could think about was what went wrong: her voice was fatigued and she hadn’t sung “perfectly”.
For fellow perfectionists, Moore’s self-flagellation is all too relatable. Why do we focus on the few things that went wrong, rather than celebrating everything that went right? Why are we so hard on ourselves?
The next day, Moore – a self-confessed “perfectionist”– said the experience had taught her a lesson about being kinder to herself.
Posting to Instagram stories, Moore thanked everyone for coming to her show. “I’ve not been on stage and done a proper show in almost 13 years,” she explained. “It’s scary and really vulnerable and I felt so safe and supported in that room last night so thank you to everybody.
“Also,” she continues, “this is a good lesson – I am a perfectionist.
“I have been beating myself up since I got off stage about not singing perfectly and my voice was tired from rehearsals and I have to be gentler.
‘We all need to be gentler to ourselves. All those type-A perfectionists out there, perfection is not the point. Especially, as a creative person.
Moore continued, “It’s impossible. That is an impossible standard to try and live up to and I am going to try and recognise that this is the time to sort of be dusting off the cobwebs and getting back out there and it’s not going to just happen overnight.”
Moore is right.
As perfectionists, especially women, we so often hold ourselves to nearly impossible standards and then beat ourselves up when we don’t meet them. Not only is this unrealistic, it’s also counter productive. Imagine if we extended the same support to ourselves as we did to others?
So, next time you’re beating yourself up about something that wasn’t “perfect”, be gentle. Besides, perfect is an impossible standard.