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Real Not Perfect

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To be worthy doesn’t mean having to be perfect!

Perfection is something that is one of those unattainable goals that we somehow seem to be striving for, always in vain. We set expectations on ourselves and set ourselves up for failure when our goal or expectation is to become perfect.

It is easy to get caught up in wanting ourselves to be perfect, but it is also very dangerous because when we are wanting that perfection it very often doesn’t stop at ourselves and we come to want or even expect that from others around us as well!

In previous posts I’ve talked a little about how comparison of ourselves to others is fatal, and in this age of social media, it’s really hard to not allow ourselves to succumb to such self-sabotaging behavior. So how do we change our mindset so that striving for personal excellence is what we aim for? Here are some things that I use daily and they work for me:

  1. Choose to focus only on being better each day than the day before – rather than focusing on what we’re doing wrong or we’re not great at.
  2. Choose to appreciate and love the things we are good at and build on those…
  3. Practice positive self-talk so that we can start to realize how amazing we are.
  4. Allow ourselves to celebrate any victory, whether great or small. That way we are not always dissatisfied with our results. We have to appreciate the small things first otherwise we won’t know what the big things are!
  5. Don’t just focus on the outcome – a lot of growth and strength building comes in the journey. In the learning – you know, the falling down and getting up!
  6. Sometimes procrastination comes from not wanting to not be able to complete something or do it perfectly. Allowing ourselves the grace to not finish something immediately gives us the opportunity to avoid procrastination and learn something along the way.

I know when I let go of my need to control everything, my need for things to go EXACTLY according to a plan I might have in my mind, I am always pleasantly surprised by the results I get. My expectations have been known to get me into trouble, because I promise you the scenarios and outcomes I create in my mind are so much more elaborate than I could ever create in real life. It took me a while to realize that I didn’t want to hold myself back and I certainly didn’t want to be unhappy…but once I did, it created a huge amount of freedom and was light a weight being lifted off my shoulders.

I used to think that the pressure I put on myself – the pressure to create success and fulfillment – was what made me successful, but what I have realized after A LONG time is that it’s actually the opposite. I am always going to be driven, motivated, have a love of stepping out of my comfort zone, but it was actually the expectations and the need for perfection that held me back rather than making me better. It’s hard to come to the realization that I was sabotaging my own success, but once I did and I became conscious about my behavior…that’s when the magic started to happen!

Managing Expectations

“Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start!”

One of the biggest challenges I have in my life are managing my expectations. I quite often find myself imagining how a scenario will go, how something is going to turn out and even worse, expecting people to react in a certain way. It wasn’t until the past few years that I even recognized that I was doing this and noticed what effect it was having on my life or the happiness I was unable to experience because of it.

I have always been someone that has demanded REALLY high standards from myself, and also from others that I work with, interact with and live with. As you can imagine, having expectations about how one of your kids or your spouse is going to react is pretty much insanity…because we have absolutely no control over that and we more often than not end up disappointed.

Even this past weekend I had so much fun traveling and shopping and one of my favorite things to do is to buy gifts for people. What I found is that my excitement for the gifts wasn’t exactly felt by those I had bought the gifts for. After speaking with Brandon about how it made me feel sad that someone wasn’t excited about what I bought them, he helped me understand that it wasn’t about the gift at all but rather what I “expected” they would react like when I gave the gift to them. I know I’m not crazy and I know I am not the only one that has done or does this…in fact, my guess is it is pretty common (whether you may be conscious of it or not).

Expectations can be our worst enemy. They can take a positive thing (like giving a gift) and turn it into frustration, disappointment and sadness…

Unfortunately there is not a “quick fix” because I have had these habits for longer than I would care to admit, but what I do know is that now that I recognize what I am doing, it is easier to spot it, and even if I initially feel the disappointment, or frustration, I can tell myself that I am slipping into old patterns and nip the expectations in the bud.

Just as most things in life, a want to and most definitely a huge effort is what is needed to change any direction in your life, and more often than not, that effort is at times going to seem overwhelming.

 

Expectations can manifest themselves in so many ways, it can be expectations of ourselves, of others and also of situations. I have to admit that when I first started my blog I had HUGE expectations about how long it would take me to learn all I need to know, what kinds of reactions I would have to my content, how many followers I would get, etc. I can tell you that I soon realized that it was going to look nothing like my initial expectation and that’s when I started to become frustrated, impatient and even discouraged. What I realized is that the main reason I started my blog was to help people (particularly women) recognize their worth, gain confidence through feeling good about how they look, and have the courage to take on their lives…so how could I put a timeframe on that? Great things take time and I am willing to take that time to help as many people as possible!  I made a decision to trade the expectations of how I thought my blog should look for an appreciation of what it has taught me, how much I’ve grown and just the fact that I am able to help people 🙂

With that being said, if you can think of anything topic I could cover that would help you personally, shoot me an email…I would love to know!!

One final thought…”No one can make you feel inferior without your consent!”