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"Your life is not a problem to be solved but a gift to be opened." ~ Wayne Muller

I’m Perfect. Are You?

close up of legs woman with leggings and sneakers outdoor

I get up at 5 a.m most mornings, attend a one-hour bootcamp class, get my kids ready for school and journal for 45 minutes—all in the first sixth of my day.

I don’t step out of the house unless I’m “put together;” I attend church every Sunday (with husband and kids who are also well put-together) and I run my own business.

Yup. I’m perfect.

More like perfectionistic.

Yes, I do all of these things. They are all me and my “get things done” personality. Perhaps from the outside it may look like I’m living the perfect life (although some may say 5 a.m. awakenings equal madness) but from the inside it all looks like a hot mess.

Truth is, I’m a recovering “not good enough”-ist.

I used to beat myself up daily. Figuratively that is. “Not good enough” was my inner mantra, like I was cracking my own whip. Not a good enough mother, wife, writer, friend. Just not good enough.

On bad days it’s still my mantra.

But over the years I’ve realized the damage that kind of thinking does. And I’ve come to believe what Jess said in her post last week: “When you realize you are good enough, just as you are, it changes everything.”

I’m just as broken as the next person, and certainly a long way from society’s unrealistic version of perfection.

And I’m so good with that.

Leaving comparison behind

Do you sometimes look at the lives of others and compare yourself? Wish you could do what they do? Look like they do? Have what they have? They’re just so annoyingly perfect…

A symptom of my “not good enough” syndrome was looking for the imperfections in my “perfect” peers all the time—comparing their lives to my own. I think it’s hard not to nowadays; other people’s lives are so accessible—think reality TV, glossy magazines, and social media. 

It helps you know. When you feel like you aren’t good enough yourself, it makes you feel a whole lot better if you can find reasons why other people aren’t good enough also.

But the irony of that “reality” is it is anything but real. And looking for other people’s imperfections only helps for a short while. When we look for reasons why others aren’t good enough, in the end it only makes us feel critical and unkind.

Comparison keeps us constantly looking for our worth outside of ourselves (tweet that!)« Continue »

When You Realize You Are Enough

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Do you ever feel a tiny bit sick right before you hit the “publish” button?

Do you find yourself wondering what did I just do after you share your words?

I do.

Maybe it’s because the words I share offer a window into my soul. Sometimes I wonder if sharing these words is a bit like undressing in front of that window. Why would I do that?

Thought Catalog recently published an article describing hell for each individual Meyers Briggs personality-type. Its description of my INFP hell made me laugh and cringe: “Your deepest thoughts and feelings are exposed to a large audience and everyone thinks that you’re pathetic and unoriginal.” Of course it is.

Why? Why do I feel the need to share my words? Why do I write about my deepest thoughts and feelings? Maybe it would be safer to write about food instead.

I like food, maybe I even love it. But most days food is not what I need to write about.

Sharing my words is hard sometimes. I don’t always like the emotions that crop up after I share. Sometimes I’ve wondered if I even should be sharing. What if I just can’t handle the aftermath?

But the good things in life rarely come easily, do they? Just because being a mom is hard and I sometimes don’t like my emotions when the kids are fighting and glitter has spilled all over the floor, doesn’t mean that I am a bad mother or that I shouldn’t be one.

Sharing my words is hard because vulnerability is hard.

But writing and sharing with vulnerability helps me to own my story. It helps me to embrace the messy and the light. They go together. Sometimes we need the messy part of sharing words to discover the light underneath (tweet that!)« Continue »

Why Keeping A Gratitude List Will Change Your Life

“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.”  ― William Arthur Ward Practicing gratitude can radically change our lives. It can help eliminate stress, give us a fresh perspective, and anchor us in the present moment. It’s such a simple thing to do, yet we […]

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Why Do You Write?

Why do you write? The hope for money, or fame, or a large following, didn’t start the words boiling in your blood. So what did? What do you need to write about? What are those words that fester in your soul and won’t let you alone? The ideas or stories working their way through your gut, needing […]

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