One of my favorite quotes from a former counseling prof is: 

“Perfectionism leads to hopelessness, but failure leads to hope (cause you can always try again)!”

I have come to the conclusion that perfectionism is not fun.  Trying to make things go a certain way, prevent things from going a certain way, having things happen when I want them to, how I want them to… it all ends up being a bit nerve-wracking!  😛  And I am certainly finding out that perfectionism and parenting do not go hand in hand…AT ALL.  Try making sure your kids’ pasta does not get all over the table or their clothes or preventing them from spilling a whole cup of water or peeing/pooing on themselves or worse, on you!  The list goes on and on.  And all this work for a brief moment of feeling like things are under my control…until the next situation that needs perfecting.  It’s like trying to keep the lid down on a pot of boiling water…all I get is burned and frustrated.  But if I can turn the fire down (ie. change the unreasonable and non-beneficial rules I have in my head), I can enjoy life a lot more and not be so anti-fun.  🙂

Image courtesy of vorakorn/freedigitalphotos.net

So I admit I am a recovering perfection-aholic and this is day one…again…of my sobriety (cause I’m pretty sure I tried unsuccesfully to perfect something yesterday). 😛  I think I’ve realized the solution to perfectionism…it’s unconditional love.  Knowing that God already knows all the good and bad about me that has happened and is yet to come and still loves me – well, the only one making me jump through hoops is myself.  And tangibly seeing God’s love through my hubby and kids (who are great at showing unconditional love) helps me not be so hard on myself.  Which is important in parenting cause I just have to remember that kids are kids and things happen, but it’s all good cause we can always try again (and it’s easy to google different ways of getting stains out of clothes and carpet).  🙂

This reminds me of a verse: “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18)
Seems like the one thing that we can try to be perfect in is love, loving ourselves and others, the way God loves us.  So here’s to a new day of being okay at failing so I can try again.  🙂
The song for this post is Aretha Franklin’s R-E-S-P-E-C-T, which in my case would be changed to P-E-R-F-E-C-T!
Are you or someone you know a perfectionist?

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