Sometimes we think we have to have it all figured out. That we need to be some sort of perfect robot. We have to be the perfect worker and the perfect friend and the perfect parent. The truth is that is a fallacy.
Perfection doesn’t exist.
We hear it said all the time that no one is perfect but why do we still feel like we have to be? Why are we so hard on ourselves and each other when mistakes are made? The world that we live in seems like it doesn’t have time for a learning curve.
I can relate mostly to this with parenting. We hear all the time that moms are so hard on each other with parenting. Can I tell you something?
PARENTING COMES NATURALLY TO NO ONE.
If you don’t agree with this that you are lying. Point blank. Some people understand the basic needs of a human being and they flourish there. Some people are awesome encouragers and can motivate and stir their children. Some are adventurous and help their children to find the wonder of life. There is something beautiful and natural about each mother’s journey with their child. But, to say that things just all came natural and you knew exactly what you were doing the whole time is such a big fat lie.
The truth is that most of us are so much harder on ourselves then we have to be. We ruminate over all of the things we have done wrong and never once give ourselves credit for where we do right. Mostly, however, we don’t give ourselves a break when we do something wrong. We instantly fall into guilt, embarrassment and shame.
WHY ARE WE DOING THAT TO OURSELVES?!
I work in a new position with the State, my first “big girl” job. I made a silly mistake at work this week. I had to mail agreements out to two different towns. I ended up sending the wrong agreement to the wrong town. My boss called me over to let me know they got a message from the towns and that I needed to coordinate with them to fix the problem. Instantly I felt like a failure. I wasn’t holding up to my impossible perfect standard. I thought to myself, secretaries are supposed to correct mistakes, not make them. I called the towns and apologized as I tried to figure out how we could fix it. One of the clerks that I spoke with said to me, “I know, being human sucks doesn’t it? It gets in the way all the time.”
This might not mean much to anyone but it did to me. Her kindness and understanding in my human condition, as corny as it sounds, instantly made me feel relieved. I don’t think she even realized what a kind thing she had done for me.
Such a simple statement that she said but doesn’t it ring so true? Being human really does get in the way all the time. It gets in the way of my idea of perfection. Thank God that Jesus came in to make up for my mishaps.
I wasn’t trying to mess up. I was working my butt of trying to prove that I am worthy of this position while my husband is home, exhausted from working third shift, taking care of our four kids. I was dealing with trying to fit all my work in before I leave so I can get out on time and go home to make dinner for the kids before rushing off to church. I was dealing with my own self esteem issues, issues with my kids and my marriage, while trying to make time to read and pray and encourage and lead and eat right and be superwoman. And when I messed up… I felt like an absolute idiot. It really was a stupid thing and wasn’t a big deal. But my perfectionism made it a big deal.
Honestly, I didn’t even realize how much I was beating myself up over it until that woman said to me that it was okay. Which makes me wonder, what other baggage did Christ free me from that I am just dragging around with me? Why do I pile on unrealistic expectations of myself and strive and try and push and all of it and when I don’t meet the standard, I crumble.
The real question is why don’t I find my worth in Christ? He told me that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. He made me a human on purpose and now I find it getting in my way. I don’t embrace my victories nearly half as much as I embrace my failures. Why do I even let judgey people bother me? Why do I ASSUME that people are judging me?
I am the person that tries to see people’s intentions behind what they do. Why don’t I give myself the same courtesy?
Even now as I write this I’m thinking to myself, “Is my grammar right?” “Will people agree with this?” “Will they think I’m crazy?” “Don’t mention God too much”…
ALL OF THAT IS CRAP.
This is MY blog. I can write whatever I want!!! LOL. Like why do we do this to ourselves? How can we ever enjoy a free life in Christ if we are constantly dragging ourselves back down to hell? We are so hard on ourselves. I know for a fact that some people out there can relate to what I am talking about. If you can’t well then you’re amazing, good for you.
I have been realizing lately that every time I try to better myself in some way whether it be change my hair or my clothes or find something pretty for my house whatever it is, it becomes an identity crisis.
I have to explore that. Why is this happening? Well, it is because I find my worth in the external. In my clothes, and my hair and my house. When my home is a mess I see that it is a reflection on who I am. What kind of total lie is that?
My outward appearance does not define who I am inside. And this is really a stupid problem to have isn’t it? We teach our kids from such a young age that they are good people on the inside and they are special and all of it. You couldn’t convince my four year old that she isn’t the best most awesome and strong warrior princess in the world. But, somewhere along the way we forget that we are awesome and strong warrior princesses.
I don’t think that an awesome and strong warrior princess is concerned with what other’s think about her. She isn’t striving to be the best because she already knows that shortcomings and all, she is the best.
I had a conversation with my son the other day that God made him to be the best HIM. I told him that God wasn’t expecting him to be the best student or the best athlete or any of it. He just wants my son to be the best at being himself.
Why do I have a different standard for myself? Why am I trying to be perfect, which is unattainable, but I haven’t even mastered being the best me?
There is a song called Party Like A Princess by Jamie Grace. I adore this song! In the chorus she says,
“Don’t you know
Who your daddy is?
And don’t you know what your daddy did?
Don’t you know who your daddy is?
He paid it all
You’re the belle of this ball
So won’t you?
Party like a princess”
My daughter and I rock out to this song all the time. I love the message that it sends to little girls when it talks about not needing a prince to party like a princess. BUT ALSO, I love the message that we are royalty.
This is not to say that we should walk around full of ourselves. But that we should have some dignity and self-worth knowing that God made us and He is the king of the universe. HE MADE US PURPOSEFULLY HUMAN.
If we didn’t make mistakes we wouldn’t have tolerance for mistakes. We couldn’t ever be the one to make someone feel that relief that they aren’t alone in the world as a failure. So let’s stop being cliché about perfection and start living it.