If you follow the blog on Instagram, you know that twice in the past two months I made deviled eggs. Once for you guys as part of my Holiday Mini Series, and then the second was for my office Christmas party. While they don’t take too much time to make, I spend easily an hour alone in the kitchen. Now that’s not uncommon for me because I love to cook, but making deviled eggs is different. It’s much quieter. I’m not simmering, chopping, sautéing, and pouring all at once. Deviled eggs are made one step at a time and I’ve done it so often I know the recipe by heart. Consequently, I have a lot of time to think while I’m preparing the eggs. The thought came into my mind about perfection. Everyone I know says they avoid deviled eggs because they are difficult to make them look right…they want perfect eggs for the people they’re cooking for.
(Can someone count the number of times I said “eggs” in that first paragraph??? Good gracious…)
And I get that…I want mine to be perfect too. But that thought turned into another one.
Raise your hand if you’re a perfectionist.
Hi. Me too. Big time.
I like to have my ducks in a row, lines neat and tidy, and all my i’s dotted and my t’s crossed. That’s just who I am. If I had my way, I would live in a perfect little world where the rules are the rules and everyone follows them to a t. A world where there are no work arounds, no variations, just rules. I’m also a perfectionist when it comes to my appearance.
Not just my physical appearance, but the way I’m perceived at work and when I’m even out around town. I’m constantly making sure that the people I work with know I was worth the hire, even though I’ve been in the same position for months or years. I’m always early, I don’t really leave my desk, and I stay until the end of the day. When I leave the house, even to go grocery shopping, I feel the need to make sure I appear that I have my life together…even though we all know I don’t.
I always feel like I need to strive for perfection. And I can’t be the only one who does this. You might not strive for it in the same areas I do, but we all are concerned about who sees us and how they see us.
And I don’t know about you guys, but that just destroys my mentality. This need to strive for perfection exacerbates my anxiety, and it’s just not healthy. No one expects you to be perfect. And if they do, quite frankly friends, they are toxic. No one should ever expect you to be perfect. And sometimes it takes a while to get that through your head.
So as we begin a new year, I’d like to leave you with three tips on how to deal with the feeling of needing to be perfect.
1. Name three things you’re good at. I often find that the anxiety about perfection comes when I’ve been overworked, or I missed something. “Oh no, they’re going to think I’m bad at my job for missing that.” Take a deep breath and tell yourself three things you’re good at. This will help calm your mind from that anxious panic that’s rising up inside you and give you something positive to focus on.
2. Think of all the good things in life that are imperfect. Do me a favor, google “imperfect things”. You’ll find an article (between all of the links to the book) with a list of beautiful imperfect things. Things like wrinkles, that gray hair, or a deep belly laugh. They tell a story of a good time, even if they make you look older or give you a tummy ache. Or you know…you could always think about deviled eggs.
3. Just remember…no one is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes. And everyone has an off day. Do not be hard on yourself, because you are your toughest critic. It’ll be ok, and you will remember what you missed the next time.
Each day is an opportunity to grow and I hope you grow a little more each day. Until next time!