We have people all around us (who perhaps are us) who work all of the time to be perfect. From the PTA moms who have a full time job at the school volunteering to feel fulfilled to the person in your life who is a chronic do-gooder, always trying to fix other people's problems because only they have the right solution to them. I was at the park yesterday with a gal giving her 3 year old a Martha Stewart birthday party when all the kids really cared about was playing in the sand.
I recognize these women as aspects of myself - the self I've been trying to break down and get rid of that is. It's exhausting to always be right, to have things be 'just so' and to keep up with the Jones' and to keep up the appearance that I've got it all together. And the thing is, it also turns you into a ticking time bomb... like the 2 liter bottle of soda that got forgotten in your trunk, rolling around in the heat for a week.
It's going to blow.
This week both a client and I had someone (different someones) lash out at us. Unexpected and settling for sure. And yes, it was hurtful of course... and yes, here's the lesson I had to take from it.When people work so hard at being perfect all of the time, the perfect PTA/dance/girl scout/gymnastics mommy or the perfect community role model or whatever, their energy of who they really are backlogs until it starts exploding all of the place in the most ungraceful of ways. And they justify it by standing on their high moral ground, because clearly they are perfect and you should want to be more like that.
That's what we're trying to get away from - from trying so dang hard to be a perfect anything. We are by nature flawed. We are not meant to fit in cookie-cutter style. We look different and so we are. And the lesson for us is that the more we try to be that perfect person, the more we bottle up our essence like that soda ready to explode.
It's really easy to pass the buck on this one and blame others for their perfectionist tendencies... but it leads me to ask - where are you trying too hard? Is there a place where you are, well, just faking it? (Bedroom issues require a different coach - I don't want to know k?) You know what I mean... where you paste on the smile or judge others for not doing it the right way. I do it all of the time, but I'm getting better. I'm starting got recognize when I'm not being authentic because here's the thing, the more true to ourselves we become, the harder and harder it is to deviate from that. It physically doesn't feel comfortable, as if the gasses from the soda bottle are real.
So keep the cap off of the bottle for a while, let those imperfect tendencies spill out - because at some point, exploding is no longer the right way to go even if you look perfect doing it.
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