So, my last post talked about exploring gratitude even in situations that are instantly and instinctively perceived as bad. I talked about how I am naturally a ‘silver lining’ kind of person and how I naturally see what is good in bad situations. And I am. I do.
Still, gratitude has been at the forefront of my mind since writing that last post. And, I’ve learned a little bit of something about my high and mighty, superior, grateful self.
I am a cranky hag.
Ok, fine. I knew that already. I’m a kind, generous and wonderful cranky hag who loves her family beyond measure, but a cranky, and sometimes sarcastic, hag nonetheless. I have no problem seeing the good in a really bad situation. But. I have a real problem with often seeing bad in a meh, it’s not really a big deal situation. I sometimes make mountains of mole hills.
Sometimes, instead of feeling grateful when I should, like when my husband is working with our seven-year-old on her science project, I feel, well, like a cranky hag. It’s bad. I recognize it instantly, yet seem powerless to stop it. Example: I am working hard to clean the house which is something I choose to do, because a clean house is important to me. Lesson I need to learn: the fact that I am cleaning does not give me the right to expect people to stop living in the house. But, someone takes out a bowl or even looks like they might hamper my martyr efforts and I turn into….the devil. Why do I do that?
Perfectionism is a bitch.
What do you think of when you hear the word perfectionism? Someone like me who has an absolute melt down when someone undoes my cleaning efforts? Sure. Guilty as charged. And super ashamed of it.
Perfectionism, though, is much more than that. I thought I had overcome perfectionism…or that, at the very least, I was a recovering perfectionist. Over the years, I have learned the damage that being a perfectionist causes and I’ve tried to adjust my behaviours and have succeeded in some areas.
Do you think you’re not possibly a perfectionist because your living space is a mess or because you’re disorganized? Think again. Your living space may be a mess because you’re a perfectionist. You don’t have the time or the energy to get it all done…so you don’t start. Procrastination is, in my opinion, the biggest and most damaging symptom of perfectionism.
Like, you can’t make the perfect decision…so you put. off. deciding. And, bam, nothing ever gets done. Because, newsflash, the perfect decision does NOT exist. Anyway…I’m really great at seeing these tendencies…and I thought I had personally overcome all or most of them…until I flipped my lid because someone might leave a trace of their presence in my newly-cleaned space. Clearly, I have more work to do.
Going back to gratitude.
So, here’s me putting my money where my mouth is. Both my spouse and I have tendencies in the perfectionist spectrum (I made that up, it might not be a thing). Different tendencies. And, I am aware that neither of us will ever be perfect. But, I am still grateful to have the most amazing partner a girl could ever ask for. So, here are just a few things that are great about having a perfectionist for a partner:
- I NEVER have to shovel snow. Or sort recyclables. Or take out the trash. He does it all. Perfectly. Every single time. He has the absolute highest work ethic of anyone I have ever met. He does not take short cuts. You know that if he does something, he does it right.
- I don’t have to research purchases. I just tell him what I am considering and he researches every possible angle. I have the highest confidence that I am purchasing wisely when I involve him. And, it doesn’t matter whether it’s his money or someone else’s. He will take the same amount of time and conduct the same amount of research to help make sure anyone he knows makes the right purchase.
- Science project for a seven-year-old? No stress required on my part. He takes pride in working with her. He encourages her to take pride in her work. All I have to do is sit back in awe at his dedication to the process.
So, Babe? I know I am a cranky hag. And, that I have given you grief over the things that I should be grateful for. That I have rolled my eyes, perplexed, at the time you dedicate to things that I unjustly deem unworthy. And, I know it’s wrong of me do that. Believe me when I say I’m working on gratitude. And, even if I forget to say it, I am so grateful to have you.