Work, Balance, and Perfectionism

work, balance, and perfectionismAs I sit with some rare and (sort of) precious computer time while my toddler naps, I realized that I hadn’t done a blog post or a Facebook or Twitter update in so long! The thought of “catching up” suddenly inspired the perfectionist procrastinator in me to dread it, feel overwhelmed and somewhat lame for letting things go. But this is also a great opportunity to explore what the term “balance” means to me, and why it is that I don’t feel “effective” or “productive” unless I’m all-consumed by a project?

My part time practice is a great way to spend quality time with my son while doing what I love. But sometimes it’s easy to get over-involved in one aspect of your life and neglect the others, which leads (me) to realize that things aren’t balanced. I’m going to start to balance more. I’m starting by letting this be a short(er) post.

Without getting too philosophical, I’m going to practice balance by re-committing to:

  1. Do a little of something in each important area at least a few times a week. Not everyday. Not once a month in a marathon. Some weeks will be better than others.
  2. I’m going to watch my attachment to the thrill of “being super productive.” Being all-consumed for an hour is not as peaceful as consciously avoiding that high and practicing contentment with doing a little bit here and there. I’m making the fulfillment of doing the activity the motivation instead of the drive to tick off a to-do list.
  3. I’m going to explore how I wrap my identity up in these roles, and why that can lead to imbalance. Can I just be here now?

This is about perfectionism and the way that it destroys balance. It’s about how to practice contentment and be mindful in life, make conscious decisions, and not just feel shameful when you let a ball drop.

The house will fall apart.

Your car repairs will be overdue.

You will want to be impatient about how fast you can learn new things.

You will wonder if you have done enough as a parent.

You will struggle to balance work, family, exercise, etc. etc.

You will learn that balance is in the eye of the content.

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