“Control Freak” has a very negative stigma associated with it. Are you a control freak? Do you have to have things your way? Rigid and unmoving in our idea of the proper way to get things done. Most of us, I feel, would answer no to those questions.
But let me ask it a little differently. Have you ever caught yourself reloading the dishwasher because your kids/spouse/significant other didn’t do it right? Have you refolded towels because your way is the “proper” way to do it? Re-arranged clothes in a drawer or food in the pantry?
I’m guilty of this. I have been known to follow behind my daughter redoing things she’s done, just because it wasn’t the way that I would have done it. Usually fussing and fuming under my breath or even at her sometimes.
All of us are so incredibly busy these days. We are stressed and don’t feel like there are enough hours in the day. But are we possibly creating more work for ourselves? Would the dishes not get clean if they were loaded in the dishwasher haphazardly? Is there a towel police force that is going to come into your home and give you a citation because your towels are not folded the correct way?
And seriously, most of these things are an endless cycle. Dishes will need to be washed again. There will always be laundry. Towels will be used and washed and put back again. Your house is in a constant state of flux and will never be perfectly clean.
So for our own sanity and the sanity of those around us, I think it is time we let some stuff go. It took my daughter calling me out on this to even stop long enough to consider the time I’m wasting. I had been asking her to help around the house, then when she did, I would either criticize her or redo what she had already done. She finally got fed up and told me that my attitude made her not want to help me at all.
Some of you are already preparing your defense and know from experience if it’s not done the way you like it, it will drive you crazy. I understand that, truly I do.
So full disclosure, it’s really uncomfortable the first few times you let something go. It will weigh on you. All you will be able to think about is how much something needs to be redone. But fight the urge and keep fighting it. Continue to walk away from it as many times as needed. I promise you, the more you ignore it, the easier it becomes to ignore, and you will start to feel a lot less stress.
Just think of what you could be doing with the time you are saving from letting it go:
- Soaking in a hot bath
- Reading a good book
- Spending extra time on a hobby you enjoy
- Having a cup of tea (wink, wink)
- Holy shit, actually being able to sit down for a little while!!
So let the kids throw the dishes into the dishwasher. Did they make it to the dishwasher? WIN!! Let your spouse fold the towels in half instead of the acceptable tri-fold. Are they folded? WIN!!
There is another perk to relaxing and letting go. Once you start appreciating your family for doing the littlest things to help you out, they are more open to doing even more things for you. Sometimes without being asked!
And, possibly, one sweet, glorious day, they will even fold the towels the RIGHT way. Just to spite you. 🙂
Enjoy that cup of tea!