Those who know me probably agree that in a good portion of my adult life I have been a perfectionist or perfectionism has influenced my decisions at times (I know my daughter and son-in-law agree). I mean I can spot a minuscule crumb on the floor from twenty feet away and must get it up. It is as though I cannot help myself as sad as that sounds🙄. Being a perfectionist makes me happy in many areas of my life but it has also led me to give up at times on creative ventures or adventures because I could not get it perfect.
This need for perfection I know drives some folks crazy so I always blamed it on being raised by a perfectionist mother. Oh it is so nice and easy to blame someone else. The other evening my mom and I were eating dinner. For some reason she brought up the fact that even as a young child my bed had to be made up perfectly with all my dolls lined up on it a certain way and nobody better touch it. My initial reaction was that cannot be true when in my heart I knew it probably was although I conveniently forgot about it. The truth is I probably came into this lifetime with perfection as a part of me.
Don’t get me wrong. I really do not see it as a bad thing if tempered with a hefty dose of reality and forgiveness. But this post is not really about that. It is about conveniently blaming someone else for traits we somehow see as bad or negative in our personalities. How embarrassing to realize this. But it was also amusing to picture the 4 year old me already declaring my perfectionism and need to control. Thank goodness I can laugh about it (for the most part). And I also realize that blaming keeps me from fully honoring and loving all of me including idiosyncrasies.
Are the aspects of your personality you discredit or blame on someone else? Are you willing to consider taking ownership? Even more important can you honor and love all of yourself and have a sense of humor about it?
Let me know if there are other stories about aspects of life you want to read.
An amusing thing happened recently as I tried to make a decision. As often happened in the past when trying to make decisions I was agonizing over whether to return to work (yes, I retired again on October 31, 2013). I spoke with a friend about it and was going on and on with why I should not do it. She just cut to the chase telling me that I was stuck retelling the old story in my mind and I (the heart of me) was not there anymore. I was stopped cold in my whining immediately seeing the truth of what she said. It almost took my breath away. Of course, I was in the old thinking pattern based on old perceptions and my way of relating to them. My mind was going round and round with the story – he did, she didn’t, they won’t, he said and on and on with the old way of thinking.
In an instant I realized that all of that had nothing to do with me. It was as if a light turned on in the dark and even no dark corners remained. With that situation I recognize now that I am above any story and anything attached to it. This allows me to affirm that I have skills and knowledge that bring me joy as I support and connect to others. I know now it right to return to work using all that I am but with a new focus.
I am writing about this because I think it is such a good example of how the mind will sabotage movement forward in an attempt to ward off the fear of change or any other fear that arises when it is decision time. When we begin to understand that is a normal function of the human mind given what it knows, then we are able to catch ourselves (or hopefully have friends who assist with that) and take a breath. One thing I learned is to first appreciate my mind for all it gives me. Then I picture it as a small child being held in my arms, surrounded by light and being reassured it is safe and loved. That process frees me to step out of any story I am reciting and to listen to my heart.
Time must be made for silence for it is in quiet that we best hear that which is at our core – the feeling the heart is communicating. It may be for 30 seconds or 15 minutes but silence is where the answers reside. As the feeling rises it informs the body and the mind. For me it is a feeling of lightness and joy. And with the decision to return to work releasing the story and allowing truth to settle in provides me with renewed confidence in my skills. In these situations I sometimes actually find myself dancing and singing for joy.
Also, remember as you look at your stories (and do not forget your family and friends stories) and how they impact your life that we often write stories for others. I once created a story in my mind about a man I observed working out in the gym and pitied because he seemed so inadequate and later was totally embarrassed to learn his situation was totally opposite my creation and he had a delightful life. So not only monitor your mind for your stories but for the time the mind wastes creating stories for others.
For those of you who feel you are moving forward in listening to your heart but want more guidance I strongly recommend you check out Carol Fitzpatrick and Mark Torgeson on planetaryawakening.org. They offer wonderful workshops, webcasts, music and structured classes that are practical and infused with their light and love. And remember that even as we move ahead there will be times of difficulty or briefly feeling lost as we move through this human existence. However, successful navigation of those times is found in the heart as it lets us release any stories that hang us up.
Are there stories interfering with your life? If so, what are they? Are you willing to closely examine them and release the hold they have on your mind?