Perfectionism and New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Resolutions. I don’t make them anymore. I don’t recall when resolutions and I parted ways. I just know that there came a time when I realized the futility. Resolutions were just setting myself up for failure.

Some people prefer the idea of setting goals rather than making resolutions. I am not clear on the difference, but goal does sound less foreboding, even a bit positive. It makes one seem to have a certain amount of control over life. But for a perfectionist, either word is lethal. Goal lists for a perfectionist are worse than Santa’s naughty list.

I have had to reevaluate this idea of perfectionism. Who ever thought it was a good idea to begin with? Plato? Socrates? Jesus? I think Jesus did say something about being perfect like he and the Father are perfect, but was I think he has been totally misunderstood. I am not sure exactly what he meant, to tell you the truth, but he also said that we should love ourselves and I can’t seem to love self and seek perfection at the same time.

So, I have decided to give up on perfection totally. And, folks, I am feeling really free right now. I no longer ponder about the outcome of anything I do. And after the fact, if something turns out to be a flop, I smile and go onto the next thing. A better philosophy for me is simply to do the next right thing. The next right thing is whatever is on my list. Yes I still make lists, but those just help me remember.

No goals, no resolutions. If today is Tuesday and I have on my list to go to swim at 2:30, I will pack my swimsuit and towel and set it by the door. But if I the toilet gets clogged up and I have to stay home and wait for the plumber, I just choose a different next right thing. Call my cousin Franny. Then I move onto the next right thing.

I can’t imagine that Jesus would be disappointed in me. He understands that I don’t understand what he meant about being perfect. Maybe the translators of the Bible got confused and mixed up his words. Perhaps he really said, “Perfectly be just as the Father and I are being.”

6 thoughts on “Perfectionism and New Year’s Resolutions”

Comments are closed.