Our lives are busy and filled with pressure. Pressure to be the perfect mom, friend, employee and ______________ (you fill in the blank).
The thing many of us don’t realize is that the pressure is self-inflicted. Somewhere along the way, some of us created this crazy notion that we should be perfect and never make a mistake.
Guess what? Mistakes happen.
Recently, I drove my youngest son Ari to the wrong school for basketball practice.
I knew he had practice. I even left work early so he would be there on time. But when we pulled up to the gym, I instantly realized I had goofed. And then I felt badly because I know Ari likes to be early to his practices.
I turned to Ari and apologized for not double checking the schedule.
I felt guilty. But, I also told myself I am not perfect.
I made a mistake. It was not my first and it won’t be my last.
After we found out where the practice was and I dropped him off, I told myself: it’s okay and clearly not the end of the world.
Instead of beating up myself for not being “the perfect mom,” I practiced some self-compassion. I reminded myself that I am doing the best I can. It was a mistake, that’s it. I also used it as a teachable moment for Ari. Guess what? Now he takes personal responsibility for knowing where his practices are and has the schedule on his phone, too.
According to the Dalai Lama: “Compassion is not religious business, it is human business, it is not luxury, it is essential for our own peace and mental stability, it is essential for human survival.”
We all make mistakes and we always will.
Today, I invite you to start including self-compassion when you make a mistake.