Beatitudes of my life

Being grateful for everything in my life…. no matter what…

Why do we want “Perfect”? August 21, 2013

Filed under: Blessings,Life Balance,Random Thoughts — beatitudesofmylife @ 11:42 am
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This has been on my mind a lot lately… why do we expect things to be “perfect” in our most imperfect lives?  My priest often reminds us (and I’m paraphrasing here) that God loves us, even in our imperfection, as He is the only one that is truly perfect.   Is it because of our true imperfections that we continually strive for perfection and are frustrated when we find flaws or blemishes in our lives?  When did “perfect” become the pinnacle of our life’s focus… and why are we not striving to create full, blemished, original, and unique lives?  Wouldn’t it be more satisfying to create interesting lives rather than ones that are “perfect”?

To-me-you-are-perfect

Who deems that something, or someone, is “perfect” anyway… and why would we want something to be perfect… an exact replica of something else, faithfully reproducing the original… corresponding to an ideal standard or abstract concept… entirely without blemish, fault or defect…   It certainly doesn’t interest me in the least.

In my job as an Event Coordinator, I have a lot of people striving to make things “perfect”… as if anything less is not acceptable.  I believe that perfection is certainly something toward which you can aspire, but I also believe that it shouldn’t be your ultimate goal or the final word on success or failure in an endeavor.   Events such as weddings and receptions have so many variables over which there is little or no control.  Expecting everything to go “perfectly” and according to plan can be a little beyond the scope of one’s ability, but that’s not to say that working toward that goal isn’t without its merits.  Following a plan, and rolling with any necessary deviations, can be incredibly satisfying, especially if the end result is a positive and fun experience.  The result of a wedding/reception in which a few things strayed from the written plan is one that will carry the couple into a future with their own unique story.  Being able to see three brothers come together to walk their sister down the aisle, when before they had only expected two to show, is a beautiful story.  Telling the tale of the three adorable nephews happily running down the aisle, instead of carefully walking together in front of the bride, is a beautiful story.  Hearing of a joy-filled 3-year old flower girl twirling and dancing during an angelic wedding solo, simply because she’d always been taught to dance when she hears exquisite music, is a beautiful story.

The same holds true, in my humble opinion, throughout life in general.  I’ve been tuned to The Food Network a lot lately and it seems that the most prevalent word with TV Cook-hosts is “perfect”.   I know there are times for following directions to the letter… my husband would fervently remind me that “NATOPS  is written in blood” and those directions are followed, without fail, for a reason, but I always believe there are times when a looser following of directives can provide a unique and enjoyable experience.  Flying an airplane is NOT one of those times, but I know we’ve all experienced situations that needed “tweaking” or adjusting to attain an acceptable outcome.  Isn’t that where we find the most unexpected blessings?

keep-calm-cuz-nobody-s-perfectIn many aspects of my life, I like to use directions as “guidelines” instead of instructions  (I like to use “The Force” when I cook) but it seems to me that life just becomes a little more interesting if there’s a little bit of the unexpected.   Seek out a unique way to handle a problem.  Look for alternatives to that vision of perfection.  Try and come up with a cleaner, simpler way to solve that complicated issue.   You may find that the “tried and true” way to proceed has been thwarted and the only acceptable thing to do is “punt”.  If you can accept this new version of reality, you may find an even better way to attain your goal, whether it be a new way to get from Point A to Point B or a new recipe for dinner.

True perfection, my friends, is entirely over-rated.  Seek the unexpected… look toward the unique… embrace the unusual… and allow for your world to accept a few flaws.  You may find your life all the richer for it.

I wish you imperfection… in all its glory.  It’s a beautiful thing!

 

“I’m sorry” August 7, 2013

Filed under: Blessings,Communication,Life Balance,Random Thoughts — beatitudesofmylife @ 7:07 am
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“I’m sorry”…. why are these words so hard for people to say these days?  Shouldn’t this be an automatic response if you have done something that affects another person?  What is so wrong with apologizing?

I had a really sweet exchange with a gentleman in the parking lot of my local “box” store which drove home this point.  To set up the scene: I had wheeled my cart to empty my items into my trunk and then walked it around to the front of my car and left it.  Yes…. I know the cart-space was only four car-lengths away, but I was tired and it was starting to rain.  I *do* try to return the carts to their proper area when possible, but this was just “one of those days” for me.  I’d been shopping… I was tired… and I just needed to get in the car and go home.  That’s no excuse for poor cart-etiquette, and I do know better, but that’s really not the point of this story.ImSorry

Back to the exchange:  As I start to open my car door, the gentleman (whose family had fled the car as soon as it stopped so they wouldn’t get wet) walked over to my cart and turned to me, saying that he’d use the cart and take it back to the store.  I responded by thanking him very much and apologizing for not returning the cart to its rightful space.  He then mentioned a recent situation in which he had gotten his car dinged by someone’s cart while they were emptying it and mentioned that they didn’t even apologize for doing so.  I was struck by how much this episode still seemed to bother him…

Maybe they thought that if they apologized for dinging his car he might turn around and make them accept responsibility and pay for repairs (apparently it was a small paint chip, but still…)?  Maybe this person didn’t want to acknowledge that they had done anything wrong?  Maybe they were so lost in their own world that they couldn’t see past it to recognize that they had infringed upon someone else?

In any case, that short conversation left an impression on me.  I know our lives are busy and we always seem to be hurrying from one activity to another, but would it really take that much time for us to slow down and be responsible for our actions?  Would it be so bad to apologize if we inadvertently do something that bothers or upsets someone?  I do recognize that there are always going to be times when apologizing might bring on more drama than you may be prepared to handle at the moment…  Maybe you can find a better solution that will acknowledge your behavior and allow the other person to understand that you truly didn’t mean to offend or hurt them?

Are we hoping for absolution for our wrong-doing or do we simply want to apologize for our actions?  We cannot control how other’s respond to our apology, but I don’t believe that offering one should be such a chore.  I’ve written about this before… follow The Golden Rule.  Do unto other’s what you would have them do unto you.”  If you would want an apology… a simple statement saying, “I’m sorry”… then why is this so hard for us to do for others?

Can’t we all just slow down a tad and recognize the feelings of others around us?  You’d be surprised how far an immediate apology can go to repairing a situation before it gets out of hand.

Let’s all try to be a little more humane instead of just being human.  The world might just seem like a much nicer place…

 

 
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