One of the greatest stress producers is unrealistic expectations. There are two kinds, those you put on yourself and those you put on others. Some people seem to have a double standard of putting way too much on themselves and little on others. Some do the opposite.
Where ever we are perfectionistic in our lives, by definition, we are going to be stressed. The reason is that we are imperfect people living in an imperfect world. Some of us are wired more to be perfectionistic and some jobs seem to try to demand perfectionism from us.
This is why it is so important to get away from the job stress and pressure. It can be as simple as a smile, a few minutes of quiet time, or prayer and reflection. Or it can be as complicated as a two week vacation to Hawaii. You have to do what it takes for you to “disengage” and see your situation more objectively from time to time.
Seeking excellence is great but being a perfectionist with unrealistic expectations is a prescriptions for burn out…or worse.
How about you? Are your expectations of your self realistic? At work? At home? In church? As a spouse? As a parent? And how about your expectations of others, are they realistic?
The more you accept yourself, imperfections and all, the more you will be able to accept others. If you are having difficulty with perfectionism in yourself pick something small and try allowing yourself to do it less than perfect and work on accepting it in your mind. This will likely be difficult at first but you may find it helpful over time.
Use this card to…
- Challenge your expectations
- Develop more realistic expectations
- Alert you to new ways to address your stress
- Prompt you to know when you need to “disengage” from your stress