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Many gifted people struggle with perfectionism. This holds true in our home too. My oldest, Rory, who is 12 has always either gotten something immediately, or shut down. We had to push her over walls with violin when it got more challenging. We had to behoove her to continue pushing with horseback riding when it got bigger than walk. Academics have come easily to her, but it took her two years to learn how to ride a bike without training wheels.

Will, 10, has shut down when life gets too challenging in any arena. He practices until he's perfect. We cannot use any word that resembles test lest he fall apart.

Mack, until recently, hasn't really cared...or so it seemed. Now, though, with music (he's a cellist) he struggles. He doesn't like taking it slowly. He hates repeating the music multiple times in a row each practice session. It is a struggle whenever he gets new music. And when there is an impending recital. Rory, Will, Mack, and Fina will perform a piece together and some will do solos as well. Mack is struggling again as he did the last time. He has multiple meltdowns each practice time. He struggles to own his work and mistakes.

I give lots of hugs. I encourage. I sit with him, I point to notes. I acknowledge the good and choose little things to work on. I remind him the goal isn't perfection, but progress. Music lessons showed me Mack is a perfectionist where he usually very much goes with the flow.

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