I closed the door behind me and headed out to work. With a smile.
Why did I smile? Because I finally made peace with the fact that I am not perfect.
Of course I could blame the fact that I'm the busy mum of three cheeky little ladies under the age of six, that I'm running my own business, help organize TEDxDelftWomen and that life is pretty busy right now but to be completely honest with you I've always been a bit messy. The squeaky-clean gene that others of my family have been blessed with seems to have passed me by - by a mile - but not the critical voice in my head which still thought I should be able to do it all. Perfect relationship, perfect family, perfect house & perfect career.
Of course I never stood a chance to be perfect in all areas of my life in the first place but that did not stop my internal dialogue to try to convince me I could if I only tried harder.
Thankfully the rescue came in the form of a few fabulous books. These books taught me to be more compassionate and empathic with myself. They showed me how to detangle myself from society's expectations of 'who we should be', 'what we should be' and 'how we should be' and to stand firm behind what I think is right for ME.
If you want to experience the joys of a life after 'trying-to-be-perfect' here's where to start:
Kristin Neff: Self Compassion
Brene Brown: I thought it was just me (but it isn't)
Harriett Lerner: The Dance of Anger
To your happiness,