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Juggling Perfection and Efficiency

Juggling Perfection and Efficiency Featured image description is in the body of the post.

Thinking of a career change. Does anyone know the going rate for jugglers? I’ve got tons of balls in the air and just may qualify.

Not too long ago I laughingly shared the above post on Facebook. At that time I was gonna look into prospects of becoming a juggler, because, you know, balls in the air. Then l had to admit that I was dropping more balls than I was catching because I had too much going on.

Juggling Perfection and Efficiency

Juggling Perfection and Efficiency image is a selfie of me (Steph), in my bald glory, wearing a white open back top and my grandson is peeping over my left shoulder.

There’s a thin line between perfection and efficiency both of which I struggle with constantly. I know perfection is highly overrated yet I still become paralyzed when I feel I haven’t given my best. As a life-long abilities crusader (fancy title for advocate), I understand how important it is to be selective. Focusing my time and efforts where they will do the most good is an essential skill. Unfortunately, even with the best of intentions, desiring to do too many things makes me less effective because I become overwhelmed.

I love the following quote because it reminds me:

  1. my efforts are fruitless when I’m overwhelmed
  2. it helps me to refocus on my ‘why’

“If I stop to kick every barking dog, I am not going to get where I’m going.”

~Jackie Joyner-Kersee

While advocacy is around the clock, work, a friend reminded me that we should plan our work around our lives. Advocating for Accessibility, Inclusion, and Representation is why I do what I do. However, to be effective, I have to reassess, narrow my focus, and let some things go. Afterall there are over 7 billion people on the planet and none of us have to go it alone. There are many great causes in the world and plenty of opportunities for everyone who so chooses to make a difference.

The Internal Struggle

I cannot be the only person in the world who thinks there is way too much of everything around us. A simple example that comes to mind is light bulbs.

Not too long ago I was looking for some bulbs on Amazon—simple right? Wrong! A quick search returned over 50,000 results. Of course, there are options to narrow the search and even options within the options like:

  • brand
  • color temperature
  • usage
  • wattage
  • size
  • shape
  • brightness
  • features

Geez, all I wanted was some bulbs to illuminate my home and it ended up becoming a research project. I learned far more about light bulbs than I ever expected or desired, not to mention the time wasted. At one point I got so frustrated I had to take a nap and resume my search later.

Anxiety over buying light bulbs sounds silly, I know. But, when I multiply this one choice by all the others, made within one day I can easily feel paralyzed. The simplest tasks become complicated burdens and losing focus because of overstimulation rules the day. As a result, clouds of guilt, shame, and a sense of unworthiness smother me and I feel like a failure.

Placing way too much value on my work and not enough on myself is destructive and I have to change. I love what I do here on Bold Blind Beauty and I love the connections I’ve made. This community means the world to me and I’d be lost without you so I’m evolving by taking a stand.

Taking A Stand To Create Meaningful Change

When clarity begins to fade due to trying to maintain a frenzied pace something has to give. Because I’m adaptable and very low maintenance it’s easy for me to declutter. Self-compassion however, is a more challenging process that requires an overhaul. Here are some of the steps I’m taking to reclaim my clarity and overall sense of wellness:

  • Self-compassion: Being kind to myself is the only antidote to self-hatred and unworthiness. Craving acceptance is what led me to believe that my work was the only measure of my worthiness. A recent reassessment of my life revealed the cause of this toxic thinking. Practicing self-compassion and mindfulness are the keys to restoration.
  • Flexibility: Embracing flexibility has been one of the best gifts I’ve given me. Changing direction at any given point is a welcome escape from being so rigid and it feeds my creativity.
  • Adaptation: Life is constantly evolving and so are we. Recognizing I am not the same person today as I was yesterday means doing things a little differently. Being low maintenance along with the ability to adapt breeds contentment and balance.
  • Simplicity: Like my light bulb example in the “Internal Struggle,” I do not need lots of anything. Cutting the cable a few years back was so liberating. Limiting time spent in other areas like, say, social media can also be freeing. With the exception of Instagram, I don’t have any other social media on my phone. I don’t want to be connected 24/7.
  • My Voice: Remembering my values while remaining true to who I am and what I stand for sets me apart.

The Way Forward

I’ve begun the process of shifting my workload to restore my sanity. Some of this involves asking for help from others and some of it means letting go. While focusing on self-compassion will be my primary goal, for Bold Blind Beauty there will be a renewed emphasis on:

Kindness, compassion, and a deep desire for social justice are central to who I am; these are my values. Bold Blind Beauty was born out of a personal need for empowerment that I wanted to share with others.

I began this post in a lighthearted way to help anyone who is feeling overwhelmed. When you add the need for perfection into the mix it can do a number on your psyche. Please know that if you do feel this way from time to time you are not alone. Sometimes the best course of action is to drop some balls to improve our juggling skills. Here’s to ball dropping perfection! 🥂

Juggling Perfection and Efficiency Featured Image:

A woman in business attire is juggling a house, alarm clock, cell phone, sippy cup, and laptop.

Additional Image:

Selfie of me, in my bald glory, wearing a white open back top and my grandson is peeping over my left shoulder.

10 thoughts on “Juggling Perfection and Efficiency

  1. I’ve considered adding professional juggler to my resume because I have so many interests. I didn’t want to drop any ball because I thought I would miss an opportunity. But I also want to do my best. I’m realizing my best means adding depth to a few “balls.” If I have time and energy left for other interests, ok. If I don’t, ok. I started calling myself a recovering perfectionist because I used to let perfectionism stop me from doing things. Sometimes, I still do, hence recover”ing” not recover”ed.”

    1. Wow Liz!!! I feel like I could have wrote your comment as it resonates deeply with me. Perfectionism was something I used to seek for way too many years and thankfully I’ve realized that letting go, working with what I have and practicing gratitude, have helped me to become more balanced. It’s an ongoing process but for this moment I’m not feeling the need to do everything and do it to perfection. I’d much rather take a nap. But seriously learning to listen to my gut and my cheering section keeps me grounded.

  2. I’m so there with you about feeling some anxiety with so much “stuff” in this world. I have to research everything that at times I’m so overwhelmed I need to get outside, let the sun touch my skin, and stand there and breathe. Taking back that control can be challenging, but it’s a must. I’ve been making time for self-care daily. I don’t mean spend hours and hours on myself, but little moments…A five minute neck massage to start the day…making the time to put lotion on my skin is (something I never made time for)…Stopping to take my vitamins/supplements…Just the tiny things for myself that add up to a better me–a more fulfilled me–I have to remind myself I’m important too. And so are you! Glad to see you are taking steps in the right direction.

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting. I can so relate to what you’ve written here as I too research everything and at times go so deep I nearly forget the original purpose of my research. You are also on point on taking care of yourself and being mindful of what you’re doing. Mindfulness wasn’t really a full blown practice of mine but I’m slowly getting there.🤗

      1. Mindfulness is so important. You are a strong woman and I am sure you will conquer it. Be well dear. 🙂

      2. Thank you for the compliment. 🤗💕

  3. Well said, Steph! When self-compassion leads the way, it’s moving in a great direction.

    1. Thank you Susan. This all began when I went to this year’s Daring To Own Your Story retreat. It was such an amazing experience that’s taught me so many lessons.

  4. Way to go, Steph.👍🏽 Juggling many things can be overwhelming, and then add perfection to the mix… no one wins. So, I fully support ball dropping perfection! 🥂

    1. Awe, thanks Khaya!!! It’s still a work in progress but I’m getting excited at the prospect of taking back some control of my life.

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