What would it be like to be perfect?
It could be eating a healthy balanced meal with very little effort, like this one I had for dinner last night – pre cooked organic vegetables, high quality olive oil and parmesan, ready in 5 minutes. If you are an avid cook this would not be acceptable to you yet for me, at the end of a super busy and productive day, it was the right kind of meal. Which fits my new mantra of the Right Amount of Perfect.
For the perfectionists amongst us – is it your wildest dream to really be perfect in everything you attempt, get all the tasks done you set out for yourself, be a perfect Stepford wife?
Or how about a Stepford wife with a career? As Sheryl Sandberg
states: It is the Holy Trinity of Fear – the fear of being a bad mother, a bad wife, a bad daughter
. To this you can add your own flavor of perfectionism – perfect hostess, best friend, fitness goddess, mistress of a spotless home.
I hear this dilemma from my clients often – never enough time, never good enough, never finishing your list. Whether it is at work, at home, or both – our mental treadmill never stands still. Sometimes you feel relief if you just write it down and make a plan instead of letting it jumble through your head all day long.
And I am one of you – always wanting more than is humanly possible, always over estimating my capacity. The truth is you cannot ask a perfectionist to let go of perfection. But she can choose the Right Amount of Perfect.
The Right Amount of Perfect is a lovely tool to apply to everyday goal setting and time management – it allows you to make progress towards your goals, acknowledge that progress – not completion – is what you chose for today. It does not ask you to drop tasks from your list, rather take control which ones you dedicate your available time to.
Running behind the eight ball is throwing all your goals at the hours of the day; the outcome is frustration, stress and a sense of failure. For many people this becomes the reality of who they are and since we all more or less follow the same pattern of “out of control is normal” it becomes a conversation item that never seeks resolution, we nod at each other and understand. The irony is that it hits people of all ages and all status – whether you are an executive or a stay at home mom, you have little power over your time and if I could sell you two more hours in a day you would pay me handsomely.
Management trainers and coaches are starting to preach a different paradigm – since we know there are no extra hours, something else has to change. Read Tony Schwartz on “The way we are working is not working.”
He cites that 74% of employees are experiencing a personal energy crisis.
* When you seek the Right Amount of Perfect you acknowledge that you cannot expand time.
* You take control over what you do with your time.
* It means letting go if things, choosing priorities and asking for help.
The paradigm change it that the Right Amount of Perfect is still Perfect.
Drop me a line how this thought works for you – for an hour or a day. See what it’s like to not run behind the eight ball.