I made a mistake today (big surprise, huh?). I got caught up being social and forgot a group of children who were waiting for me to come during their lunchtime to discuss a story with them. A friend pointed out that the children would have waited a little bit for me and then gone on to eat their lunch and enjoy recess. End of story for them.
When I realized my mistake, I quickly emailed the teachers and parents to apologize. Who knows what reaction I'll get from the parents. Most, I think will understand or at least accept my apologies. And any that might be annoyed by my mistake will get over it pretty quick. Already I've heard back from one of the moms indicating that she completely understands. No problem. Mistake forgiven on that count.
There's just one person that I know is definitely having a hard time being forgiving about this. She does it every time. Every little mistake I make she gets annoyed at - as if I'm not human and shouldn't ever make a mistake. She's angry. She's disappointed with me. She wants to exact payment of some sort for those poor kids. She's embarrassed. And she's not at all forgiving.
Who could be so hard-hearted toward a simple mistake? Me. I can't stand it when I make a mistake or a bad choice or lose my cool or do anything other than be perfect. Uh, yeah. Picture that. How often do you think I have to deal with the results of one of the above? Daily, sometimes hourly. And honestly I'm tired of this voice of perfection that can't handle even the slightest misstep. So I'm telling my perfectionist self one thing this afternoon: get. over. it. Everybody else will. And if my voice of perfection can't do that much, then well...it's not perfect either!
How about you? Do you hold yourself to an impossible standard, one that you'd never expect of anyone else? If not, how do you give yourself room to fail? I'm working on this one and would love to hear what you think.