Saturday, February 6, 2010

Diary of a Perfectionist... I Never Knew!

You know, I try to write all the positive things in my blog and keep it fun to read. Now, this is not going to be some dark, dismal entry - no, no, no. I simply want to start it off by saying how hard it is sometimes over here. Not that this will come as some huge surprise to anyone, but it's hard work taking care of two boys and also just living/adapting in a new country. Do not get my wrong, most of the time I am enjoying myself and laughing at each "adventure" I am a part of here. However, there are times where it's just been a hard day and I feel worn out, or homesick. There have been some great days this week, and some tough ones... and I figured out why, in all honesty, the first month here was a bit harder for me than need be.

While talking with my mom yesterday, I expressed a few times that I was just stressed about "messing up" or not doing what was needed or wanted of me. My mom said, "Have they expressed that to you?" I responded with a no. She then asked, "Haven't they told you that you;re doing a great job?" My response was, "Well, yes...," to which my mom said, "Then what are you worried about?"

I will relate this to another time in my life when I got my first "C" on progress report in my junior year of HS. I got the "C" in my Pre-Calculus class because I had been slacking off a bit and not done as well on my last two-or three tests. Well, I was really upset about the bad grade. I had never gotten below a "B" in a class, and that was also rare. I was a worker, and got good grades. Well, after I saw the dreaded "C" I called my mom at work after school, and with tears told her how sorry I was and how I knew she'd be disappointed in me. Her response, you ask? She laughed at me. Yep, my mother just laughed at me. You might be appalled at this moment, but don't be. She went on, after some laughter, to say,"Good. This is good for you... It will teach you that you don't have to be perfect. Why would I be mad? You're doing great."

My mother taught me SO much in that moment and I still relate back to that story often with kids I teach, friends, family, etc. My mom always was a good teacher... :)

The real reason I tell this story is because there is a direct correlation to my inner turmoil over that "C" in High School and my emotional hardships here in Germany this first month. I am way too hard on myself sometimes. I am my own pressure-cooker. Even when I am being told that I am doing a good job, I stress about ways it could be better... and because I do this, I sometimes spend some much time worrying about how good a job/project I do could be, that I don't give it my all. I mean, I spend effort on the self-given pressure that I could be shifting to the project before me. That would relieve the stress all together, now wouldn't it? Haha!

I have spent this past week on a bit of an emotional roller-coaster, and all because I felt like I wasn't matching up to what I needed to be. However, if I spent that time and energy used on worry on something more productive, I would have been happier. Not that I'm not giving my all to this job or other things in life, I'm just realizing how I can be happier in what I do in life.

The moral of the story: I don't have to be perfect. I am not going to be perfect. It's okay. When I take on a project, I do a good job... and I'll just learn to do it better next time. Regarding nannying, I was hired because of my experience, abilities, and love of children/teaching. I am good at what I do, but when I mess up a bit (which I know, I will. I won't do everything right the first time...), I will learn and grow from the experience and must forge forward. I am not perfect, and that's okay.

Some food for thought: Remember how amazing you are and all the things you are capable of doing. Remember your strengths and recognize the weaknesses, so you can grow from them. The Lord gave us weakness to help us make them strong... Turn to Heavenly Father in all things. Honestly, that's what I've been doing, and it's been my saving grace.


Song of the Day: I'm diggin' this jam today... It's got two great artists, and although in the past I haven't been as big a fan of Alicia Keys' entire albums, I bought the recent one and love it. I say this because this song is on there - obviously. Haha! Here's Alicia and Beyonce's, Put It In A Love Song. The song is great - video not, cause there isn't one... so just listen. Enjoy!


a sunlit dreaming tree said...

i have to say that i struggle with the same things, lindz. it's hard to keep things in perspective sometimes when you are trying to make the most out of your life and work as hard as you can. you're not alone in that! i just try to remember that there are things i can control and things i cannot, and that i can always control how i react to things...and in reality, most of what i worry about from day to day never matters in the long run anyways.

love you. :) i'm sure you are doing a wonderful job!

I Am Great, I Contain Multitudes said...

You really are great girl.