Monday, December 3, 2012

Letting go of Perfection

Hi, my name is Michelle, and I have OCD.  There you have it.  (Admitting is the first step to recovery... right? :)

I've mentioned  it before...  You know... that I'm like the girl with the curl in the middle of her forehead?  When I'm good, I'm very, very good.  When I'm bad, I'm horrid.  So, really... what does this little nursery rhyme have to do with OCD?  Well, it can all be summed up into one simple word.  Perfectionism.  

I would love to live in a perfect world, where everything was... well... perfect.  My kiddos would never fight.  My carpets would be immaculate.  No dirt ANYWHERE.  And best of all?  EVERYTHING would be organized.  Ahhhh... I could just swim in a dream of perfect cleanliness and organization. (SNAP!  WAKE UP!!!!)

The fact is... this just isn't possible.  I have FIVE young kiddos.  I don't have a maid.  And I don't have a cook, and in all reality... aside from my husband and kiddos... I have no extra help at all.  So... no... the carpets are NOT clean.  The couch IS stained, the laundry ISN'T done, and I'm constantly playing catch up.

So what is the REAL battle here?  I have to make a choice.  I have to choose to live in a house that isn't perfectly cleaned and organized... and miss out on life...  Or to let go of my need for perfectionism and enjoy these precious years with my little ones.  I need to cherish these moments with my kiddos and understand that there IS such a thing as 'clean enough.'  The house doesn't have to be perfectly clean.

To put things into perspective, I often imagine that I'm in my 60's looking back... and I ask my 60 year old self... "What will you regret the most?"  Crazy as it might sound... this actually works for me.  As a 60 year old, I regret not spending time with my little kiddos.  Not taking the moments to build a relationship with them and make fun messy memories.  So... I go back in time... to the here and now... and I fix it.  I might grind my teeth a little, but I force myself to let them climb all over me and completely invade my personal space.  To let them play with play doh, and make cookies and get flour everywhere.

So what does all of this have to do with diet breaking?  Well... when the girl with the curl breaks the diet just once, BAM... she's not perfect anymore, so... she decides that she might as well break it all the way.  One cookie turns into 10, turns into a complete raid of the house for hidden chocolate and anything else that's forbidden!

Today, I'm starting a 10 day Shakeology Challenge with some friends.  And my challenge to myself is not to completely avoid cheating, because with my history... that's just not going to happen.  My challenge to myself is to let go of that perfectionism.  It's knowing that if I do veer off the perfect diet plan, that I need to let go of the fact that I 'failed' and jump right back into eating healthy again.

I'm excited about these next 10 days, because letting go of perfectionism is something I've been working on for awhile.  I've seen progress, and I'm determined to continue to change.

So, cookies, you are safe for now.  At least for today... I  mean... at least for right now...  We will take this one... step... at a time...   Perfectionism is over-rated anyway... right?