Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Unimprovement Improvement

I was reclining in my chair at the salon this morning, a steaming hot towel wrapped around my head, getting a hand massage. I opened my eyes and saw the dust on the ductwork and counted the number of people that walked by the foot of my chair wondering why in the heck they would put a major walkway there. All I could see was room for improvement.

There I was in what could have been a blissful state and instead I chose to nitpick the problems. Sheesh! Now, I've known for many years that I have to be vigilant with my self-talk. I have battled the nasty negative messages I used to send myself. I no longer walk around with "you're stupid, you're useless, no one could possibly love you., blah, blah, blah ..." playing.

But, this morning's "aha" shows me the messages I now play "this could be better...I should do this next... more work to do here ..." are really just another form of negative messages. Dratto! (as Lucas would say).

I have built a life that seeks to stretch and grow and change. I still think there is a way to do so and I don't plan on stopping that quest. However, I can see that I need to be mindful of the language I'm using as I move through my world with an eye solely for those things that need work, need improvement or could be bettered.

So, here it is! My latest quest for improvement is to ....... stop improving!! Ironic don't you think?

This unimprovement improvement calls for balance, living in the present moment, being mindful, cultivating gratitude and meditative silence. I can do that. Of course I will still be seeking to grow and learn, but it will be about moving toward that goal rather than moving away from imperfection. Oooooh, now I get it. Seriously, as I type these words, I am getting it. This is just another step in my journey as a recovering perfectionist.

Do you get the distinction? I now seek to move toward a life that I love, rather than move away from a world that I don't. I will grab onto the bliss of a massage and I will not question the traffic flow patterns of a beauty salon. It's really just a choice I can make. I choose to unimprove for a while and that, my friends, will be a fabulous improvement!


Maria said...

Sometimes in life, you just have to keep your eyes closed.
I never would have thought you ever sent negative messages to yourself......that is something I would do, and still do at times. Not usually in my personal realm, but at work - one day I am in control, the next, I am beating myself up for not accomplishing my task. And that task half the time is self imposed.

Catherine said...

We can be our own worst enemies can't we? I always have to question who really cares about stuff I've made uber important? Most of the time I realize it's insignificant.