Yesterday I left a comment on Elise Museles's blog post on The Daily Love.
She responded and said, "I think we all are a work in progress but learning to go with the flow is key."
It's nothing new, but it really hit home with me this morning.
"A work in progress." I like that. No, I LOVE that. It reminds me that I am in progress. I'm not "there." I'm not "done." I don't have to have it all figured out and do everything perfectly at just the right time. I'm learning as I go. I'm making adjustments and improvements as I see them.
For some reason that sentence from Elise really took some pressure off. Again, I'm not sure why... I've heard the phrase, "a work in progress" before. I've even heard it attributed to us in our human/spiritual journeys. Maybe I just forgot. But whatever, it wasn't in the forefront of my mind and now it is. It was the reminder I needed.
I don't typically think of myself as a "perfectionist." I don't worry if my house is perfectly clean. I don't worry if my lawn looks perfect. I don't worry about a lot of things. In many areas of my life, "good enough" is truly good enough for me.
But apparently I do strive to be perfect in other ways. Otherwise Elise's comment wouldn't hit home as strongly as it did. It wouldn't be the "pressure releaser" that it was.
One area I can think of is being on-time. In that aspect, I most definitely do strive to be perfect. I hate to be late. Even arriving "right on time" stresses me out. I think it's a combination of not wanting to miss something, not wanting to make other people wait on me, and wanting to show people that I'm reliable.
Speaking of being reliable, that's another area in general. I've always been considered a responsible person. I guess it's in my nature. Even as a child, I was responsible. I've felt pressure to be the "perfectly responsible" person. To be dependable. To be someone others can count on. I'm learning to ease up in this area and cut myself a little slack. I'm not talking about shifting to being a person who's always late and you can't count on at all. But I'm learning to let my inner Spirit be my guide, and not the expectations others have of me.
I've also tried to be the "perfect vegan." If you've read my blog posts about that, you know how that went. I'm learning to accept being 90% vegan IS ok. At least for me. At least right now.
I've tried to be the "perfect granddaughter." I do do a lot for my 97-year-old grandmother, but I have done a lot more in the past. For example, there was a period of time in which I spent four nights a week at her house. This was right after her stroke and she wasn't stable enough to walk much on her own, so she needed pushed in a wheelchair to do anything. Over time I felt stressed out in a major way, so I cut back my "help" and let others do more. And fortunately now she is able to walk on her own, with a walker, and doesn't need constant care and attention anymore (at least for now).
I'm learning that I can still be a good granddaughter and still help my grandma, but not totally push myself to the limit, or past my limits, on a regular basis. I can still have my own life and help her as much as I know is my capability.
I've also tried, at times, to be the "perfectly in-tune, spiritual individual." I'm learning that yeah, I am spiritually in-tune the majority of the time, but I can still let my ego or inner child take over from time to time.
Whatever it is for you, and whatever it is for me, it's ok that we're not perfect. I think the more important thing is to be aware and interested in learning and improving. At least most of the time. And those "other" times... sometimes letting the ego take over for a little bit now and then is a nice mental break. At least for me.
So today as I head out into the world, I will focus on being a "work in progress" and not let the pressure to be perfect consume me.