Am I Perfect Yet? The Solution Won’t be Found on Amazon – Part 1
Lately, I’ve been getting down on myself. Mainly because I’m not “perfect”. The list of things I expect myself to be able to do daily:
- Have a spotless, sanitized, perfectly organized house
- Have everything checked off my To Do List
- Work out
- Play with Henry for a good part of the day
- Teach Henry something new and stimulating each day
- Read to Henry, a lot
- Be patient, kind, and loving to my husband and every single friend I have
- Write a blog post for this site, and for my photography site
- Keep the plants alive
- Pre-plan and eat healthy, home-cooked meals (that I spent as little as possible on, of course)
- Read all the books on my nightstand (14 of them. omg)
- Read all the articles I have bookmarked
- Keep myself groomed and presentable
- Walk or ride the bus everywhere
- Plan ahead
- Listen intently
- Be thoughtful
- Remember ALL THE THINGS
- Respond timely to every email, comment, message, voicemail, etc.
- Go to bed early so I can get at least 8 hours of sleep
To say that I put a lot of pressure on myself would be a total understatement… I know I’m not alone with these thoughts. Recently, I started realizing all the negative things I have been telling myself. Things that I would never want any of my loved ones to think, things I wouldn’t want anyone to say to them. But here I am constantly telling myself that I’m just not good enough. That I’m not doing enough, that I’m just not doing this whole life thing the right way. Since I don’t like feeling like I’m jacking things up I, inevitably, end up looking for something to make me feel better about things; I want to find something that will help me nail life and really get a handle on everything. Maybe if I got Henry a Montessori toy thing-y that’d be good for him, or maybe if I got this sunless tanner stuff I’d be prettier. Then, cue me searching for this stuff on Amazon.
Unfortunately, nothing is ever enough, and the endless cycle continues and continues. Money gets spent and spent and spent in the constant search for the thing that will be THE ANSWER to ALL THE ISSUES EVER.
And, you know what? I know that “stuff” isn’t going to make things right. Material objects didn’t fix things in the past and they won’t today. The thing that I’m looking for isn’t something that can be bought. I won’t find it at Target. I won’t find it on Asos, Modcloth, or Amazon. No. As much as I wish it were that easy I know it’s not. I wish I could order a Make Yourself Magically Efficient and Perfect kit that would be delivered in a cardboard box directly to my doorstep in only two short days (via Amazon Prime, of course). I know it’s not that easy though. I already know what the solution is. All that negative self talk, all those terrible things I’m saying to myself… they’ve got to stop.
The Harvard Business Review reports that it takes 6 positive comments to cancel out a negative one. That means I’ve got to aggressively stop talking shit – to myself, ASAP. It won’t cost me a cent and I can start today. I knows it’s going to feel cheesy as all hell to be standing in the mirror with a big ol’ grin on my face telling myself, “You know what? You’re awesome, dangit!”
Now, I’m not going to act like the only reason I buy things is to make myself feel better about life and my difficulties because that’s not the case. I like pretty things, and I like to buy those pretty things. I know this. And that’s what’s different about today’s situation from the past when I acquired all my debt. I’m aware of my trouble areas, and I also know how hard it was to get out of debt. I never want to have to go through that again. I am fully aware of the fact that I’m a Natural Spender. That just means I have to work that much harder to curb my inherent tendencies. It does get me wondering, though… am I doomed to fall back into my old ways? Once a Spender always a Spender? Once in debt, always in debt? I hope not.
I used to beat myself up over the debt that I had, and all the bad money choices I had made until I made the simple decision to change the way I dealt with money. All it took was making that first decision to do the Spending Fast, and the weight of my past decisions was automatically lifted- because I finally saw there was a way out that could actually work. It took taking action against my debt to change the way I related to money. So, that’s the plan. That’s where I’m at today, I’m going to simply start by taking action, and see if it works in this situation too.
I’m breaking this into 2 posts so it’s not so incredibly massive. (You’ll see why when I share the 2nd part with you.) Part 2 is going to be the list of all the NEW things I’m working on telling myself to cancel out the old things. It’s gonna take some work to change those automatic thoughts but it’s way cheaper than therapy so I’m gonna give it a go. Also, after writing this post I’ve realized that I need to use the minimalist approach that I use with the items in my life, in the other areas of my life too. I’m going to shed some of my obligations by going through and simplifying my responsibilities, and I’m going to work on saying “No” to things a lot more often. I’ve got to go easier on myself by letting go of many things but I mainly have to let go of all these completely unrealistic expectations I have for myself.
More soon… xo
Clearly my expectations of myself are way too high. Tell me, do you do this to yourself too? How have you stopped or how have you started to think about yourself differently?
P.S. If you can relate to this post you would most likely also be able to relate to this post: The Perfectionism Curse.