I’m a perfectionist, through and through. I hold myself to a standard way higher than anyone else does. It’s not OCD and I don’t need to be medicated (regularly) but I have a hard time getting through a day without comparing myself to other people and deciding what I can do to be “better”.
I read this article this morning and it got me thinking: Without the perfectionism, who am I really? Having turned 30 this past year, I’ve comfortably settled in to this life. I still fight to grow and seek health and balance, but not at the expense of being who I really am.
My co-worker, Katie, and I at SXSW.
Last week I was at SXSW Interactive in Austin, TX for work. It required me to network, make pleasant conversation, answer questions, and drink (yep, drinking was a requirement). The first day I spent completely nervous about how I was presenting myself. The second day I spent trying to be what people wanted me to be. And the final days I spent throwing caution to the wind and being a wild woman. I didn’t come home until 5:30 in the morning one night and while I felt terrible that my husband didn’t join in on all the fun, I also felt somewhat liberated. And as I mentally reviewed my trip, I realize this is the evolution of my 20s into my 30s. I spent the beginning of my 20s being nervous; the end of my 20s being who people wanted me to be. And now, entering my 30s, I want to throw caution to the wind. I mean, my 20s are already over. That’s the first 3 decades of life. I can’t keep spending it guessing the right answer.
So who am I? I’m as multifaceted as the next girl, but who am I really?
I’m opinionated. I don’t care to share my opinions at the expense of a friendship or an otherwise friendly conversation. And I don’t care if your opinion differs from mine so long as we respect the contrast. But I do like to have strong opinions, and occasionally shout them.
I’m loyal to a fault. If I love you, you can do NEARLY ANYTHING and I will defend you. Maybe not physically (although my brain gets so clouded with loyalty sometimes that I probably would, if faced with it), but definitely with my big fat mouth. I find that I’m better with words than punches anyway.
I love to make people happy and/or laugh. It’s my favorite way to share love. If I say something funny, and you laugh, my day is made. And I hope yours is, too. Now, if you can make me laugh or catch me off guard with a snarky comment, my month is made.
I really like to curse. If I could, I would use a curse word in every sentence. Maybe it’s a repercussion from all those years of being nervous or trying to people-please; maybe it’s a Napoleon complex (I’m only 5’0″ tall), the only way my mind thinks it can grab the attention of all the minds hovering above it. Either way, I like it. I wish I could do it at the grocery store.
I love people. I love talking to people and learning from them. I love sharing what I know, too. I’d like to be a better listener. I’m working on it.
So now that I write these out, I’m more like my mom than I once thought, maybe without the cursing. (If you know my mom, then you know that makes me pretty lucky.) What really makes you YOU? While making the list, are you trying to please others or even comparing to my list?
Well, stop it. Write your own damn list.