Throughout my life I have heard my Dad say “If you can’t do it right, then don’t do it at all”. This usually related to chores, gardening or tasks that he wanted to have done. Most of the time he ended up doing it himself, because we just couldn’t get it just right. I’ve inherited that trait from him, and I have become just as much of a control freak as he is.
I love you Daddy but you are a control freak.
The problem with being a control freak is that no one can do it as well as I can. They can get the job done, but not perfectly (which means not the way I like it). This leads to frustration and me trying to “do it all”.
“Done is Better then Perfect”
My husband said that to me this morning and my initial reaction was to disagree with him. I thought “Why do something if it isn’t perfect?” That was my gut instinct. When you do things, they should be done perfectly. Then I reflected on my gut reaction and made some realizations about myself.
I realized that I mostly attempt things that I know I won’t fail. This fear of failure has stopped me from doing a lot in my life. A lot of opportunities have been missed because of this fear. Most of the time I have some excuse or another for why I didn’t try.
Last month I went on a Surf and Yoga retreat in Costa Rica. On one of our excursions, we went to a waterfall. It was steep, and high and you could slide down the waterfall like a water slide (but steeper and lots of rocks). I stood at the base looking up and knew that if I climbed up there was no way to get down except for down the waterfall. I watched as a few people attempted it and it looked like fun, but I was afraid. Eventually I convinced myself to climb up and slide down. It changed my life forever. I realized that there is nothing more exhilarating then conquering your fears.
When I returned home I started to conquer my fears, one by one. It is a work in progress but at least I am aware of the fear, acknowledging it and then proceeding. When I feel the fear, I remind myself of that waterfall.
As for the control issues. They are still there, but like the fear, they are acknowledged.
Done is better then perfect. Perfectly done would be ideal. But trying and failing is better then not trying at all.
What are you afraid of?