Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Perfect is Overrated

I struggle with wanting things to be perfect.

My house.  My plans.  My kids.  My husband.  My day. 

You get the point.

I like things a certain way and there's definitely a right way to do things in my mind.

Over the years I've come to realize that this fact about me makes me hard to live with.

I'm guilty of being overly critical and rigid with my expectations.

This is something I've been working on and practicing every day for the past few years. 

Really ever since I had kids I have had to learn to adjust my expectations because being perfect is overrated.

I have made lots of little adjustments (mostly internal) to alter my expectations and make them more doable.  I ask for help.  I accept help when it's offered.  I say it's good enough.  My house is still tidy most of the time.  My kids help clean up.  My husband helps with chores, but I'm no longer the quality control police making sure that everything is done perfect.

Here are some little ways that I've let go around the house.  I've compromised my standards in a good way.  Perfection is unrealistic and I'm really working hard to be thankful for the help/content with my surroundings.  I went around the house this past weekend and snapped some pictures for you.

Olive set the table for us for dinner!  She was so proud and I was really proud of her.  It looks different than how I would have set it, but who cares?!?  I also ignored the mess of snow balls, tennis gear and backpacks to make dinner.  Feeding my family was more important than tidying up at the moment.

Olive was been wiping off the counters.  She asks for a little help, but I appreciate her taking this job on after a meal.

My kitchen towel drawer currently looks like this.  Both my husband and my 5 year old fold kitchen towels differently than I do.  But, I'm focusing on the fact that they're clean, folded and I didn't have to do that job instead of a perfectly neat drawer.  I know my daughter will learn to fold neater as she gets older and I know my husband's way of folding works just fine.

Kevin's been doing the dishes.  That means that I don't have to do them - hooray!  I'm ignoring the fact that I load it differently than he does and just being thankful for the team work.

Again, bed made - hooray!  Not how I would have stacked the pillows, but it's done.  I've also been practicing giving praise for jobs even when they're not done the same way that I would do them.  This means thanking my husband in person or texting him and not saying a peep about his pillow arrangement haha!  He always appreciates the words of affirmation and praise.

Olive has been asking for more jobs, more responsibilities and more things to help out with around the house.  Kevin and I worked on a little chore chart for her of extra things she could do to earn a little allowance each week.  There are plenty of things she's responsible for every day.  This list is just things that she can do to go above and beyond if she wants.  I don't bug her about this list.  She takes care of these tasks independently and I check in with her on Sundays.  She adds check marks with a dry erase marker all week and then we erase them all at the end of the week.

So I'm curious to know - am I alone in liking things to be perfect??  Is this something that you have to work on, too?  Or is your spouse this way?


  1. I could have written every word of this post! I also love to have things "just so" but it's important to let that go and appreciate the efforts of the other family members. The struggle is REAL!

  2. Gah! This speaks to me! My kids are similar ages to yours, and my hubby definitely doesn't have the same "perfectionism" that I do yet he's helpful!

    Love all your thoughts. I'm growing right along with you!

  3. What a PERFECT post 😉! I’m the same! This was such a great reminder for me too. Perfect is waaay overrated.

  4. I'm so with you and the "perfect" pictures in our Instagram Pretty culture feed into that a ton. My boys are learning to put away their clothes. Wesley "cleans" up his room and it's not how I would clean it, but I'm happy they're learning.

  5. I need to work on this...Ben will not load the dishwasher bc he says I will just redo it!! EEK

  6. SO glad I’m not alone! I could have written this myself. My husband had lived several years by himself before we got married and the 1st time we folded laundry together I criticized how he folded the towels.... of all things towels. He didn’t fold another towel for probably 8 years. And he slowly stopped helping with all things around the house bc I was overly critical. After our first child I realized what I had done and I spent several years building my husband back up and softening my vision of perfection. My towel drawer now looks like yours and I’m grateful for any and all help I can get. The chaos and mess still make me anxious but it’s only for such a short time right?! Thanks for sharing!

  7. It is fine to be semi-perfect! Your Pfaltzgraff dishes caught my attention. My guess is that someone passed along their collection to you.

  8. This was the best blog post and gave me so much to think about! I agree that focusing on gratitude and the positive things can make all the difference :) in today’s world of social media, it’s so easy to get caught up in wanting to compare and wanting the perfect scenes that you see on beautifully staged Instagram photos, but we all know that isn’t reality (for most of us!!)

  9. This is something I need to work on. I know I criticize on how things get folded, put away, washed, etc. if I don't do them. I need to work on accepting help, appreciating when things get done, praising the help even when it's different than what I do. It is hard to let go of those "expectations". I know one day I'd love to have my kids help, and I know I need to start letting go of the "perfection" I'm looking for. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Yes to all of this! This has always been a huge struggle of mine too, but it really helps your sanity when you let it go. Sounds like you have a pretty incredible family that loves you and at the end of the day that's all that matters!


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