Do you have a Type A personality? Do you find yourself saying “If you want something done right you have to do it yourself?” Do you procrastinate or stress over details? Do you find yourself questioning authority? Are you a perfectionist? If you answered yes, chances are you like control.
I get it. I don’t like surprises. I like consistency. I want to design my own life and make things happen the way I envision them. That’s not necessarily a bad thing in itself. However, not being able to adapt to change is a killer.
I’ll be listing ideas for things you might want to devote less energy to below.
Allow yourself to feel the release of tension in your muscles as you put these points to action in your life.
Study the image below and remind yourself what is not worth stressing over. Focus on the things you can control and bettering yourself. Don’t worry about others’ choices or actions. You aren’t here to save the world.
Seriously, where has fussing ever gotten you? Take notice of how many times you stress, nag or fuss over small irrelevant details? I understand that detail-oriented person who thinks that everything has to be perfect and that they always have to give 100% to everything. I think companies praise and encourage people who are “detail-oriented.” But guess what, not everything is worth 100% of your precious energy. Just like not every ONE is worth 100% of your precious energy. Think of your energy as a full cup each morning. What do you want to pour into today? Why waste all you have on something that in the end doesn’t even matter?
Not everything is going to go as planned. However, life has a way of working itself out. For the perfectionist, something not going as planned is blown completely out of proportion. Let go of the idea that if something doesn’t go as planned it has failed. It’s simply not true.
Did you know that the invention of penicillin was purely serendipitous? In 1928 a bacteriologist named Dr. Alexander Fleming was studying the bacteria Staphylococcus Aureus when he realized his petri dish was contaminated with a mold called penicillin. Low and behold wherever the penicillin was the bacteria had died. Failure? I think not!
Letting go of control will reduce a lot of stress and could potentially add years to your life. More enjoyable years, I might add.
Below are my ideas of things to let go of so you can enjoy more peace in your life. By the way, I’ve been there. Were it otherwise I would not be able to write this post. I just want everyone to feel that weight come off of their shoulders like It did for me when I finally truly let go of perfectionism and started to embrace “it’s all goodism”
Things you may want to devote less energy to might be:
- House cleaning. If it’s clean it is good enough. It will get dirty again. Trust me.
- Personal Appearances. Adopt a few go-to hairstyles and streamline your wardrobe so that multiple things look good together. Wear jewelry that is classic instead of trendy. Save primping for a special occasion. (And throw away your magnifying mirror!)
- The fear of failure. As mentioned above, sometimes something better than you could have imagined comes out of an unexpected outcome. Keep an open mind and look for the positive in everything. How else would we learn if we didn’t make mistakes?
- Phone conversations. Keep them to the point and avoid the drama.
- Meetings. Same as above. Short and sweet meetings are the best meetings. As long as everyone knows what tasks they need to be focusing on and the overall goals, the details can be hashed out one on one, if needed.
- Arguments. Does it really matter who was right about something as simple as who said what or where you first met? It’s a scientific fact that our memories can actually betray us because we forget details of events passed. So, one person’s memory of an event can be totally different than another’s and both feel completely right to them. That’s just one example of a silly argument. Most arguments are silly when you think about it. You do not need to have the last word.
- Battling with the kids. Kids are unpredictable. They are always learning by challenging their parents and ideas. It’s their job to test their independence and may do so by defying authority. Pick your battles wisely when it comes to kids. Give them choices. Let them state their case and win sometimes. As long as they aren’t getting hurt or walking all over you or other authority figures, it’s going to be ok.
- Details. As previously mentioned, most things do not require detailed perfection. Use your judgment on what things matter that much to you.
- Comparison. This probably should have been the first thing on my list. Stop keeping up with the Jones’. Or, for today’s world I should say, “stop comparing yourself to social media.” Your clothes are good enough. Your appearance is good enough. Your home is good enough. Your bank account is good enough.
- Competition. A little friendly competition is healthy. I knew someone who could never be wrong, would constantly try to outdo others and take credit for everything. Everything with this person was a competition I never agreed to. It seriously got to the point that this person crossed a line into toxicity for me. It was not fun but rather stressful to be around them.
- Holidays. You do not need to spend more than you make. You do not need to redo any part of your house if you’re hosting a holiday gathering. Again, this is an example of control and perfectionism which go hand in hand. I have a family member used to be like this. She stressed out over how everything looked, what people wore, what they said, the food, you name it. I’m not sure she ever really enjoyed a holiday for many years. Worse, she made it unenjoyable for others.
Are you a perfectionist?
Did any of these things resonate with you?
Are you willing to challenge yourself to start letting go of any of these things?
I hope you enjoyed the list as food for thought on some simple ways to release stress from your life.
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Now, take a deep breath.
Make the commitment to stop yourself from fussing over the little things and just start letting go.
May you be happy and well!