New Year’ New You? Stop Perfectionism, Relax More, and Spend Quality Time with Those You Love
New Year – New You?
By Sharon Scott, LPC, LMFT
January seems to be a time for nostalgia at least for me anyway. I don’t make new year’s resolutions as I try to have ongoing goals year round.
What I often do in January is remind myself that we can take nothing for granted and to be very grateful for what I have in the way of family and friends, animal companions, health, home, etc.
So often we’re on that treadmill of hurrying from one thing to the next as if life was some kind of race. The older I get, the clearer it becomes that I should slow down so that I can have time to smell the roses. Age will kindly slow us down a little, but I don’t want to wait for it to slow me down.
I want to have the wisdom to know that everything doesn’t have to be perfect’ kids don’t need to be in everything’ leftovers will do’ I don’t need to shop as I have more than enough clothes. I need to notice, enjoy and appreciate things more.
If you have more than one child, each child needs individual attention to feel special.I was discussing last week the importance of making eye contact with children with one of my private counseling clients. She said, ‘Oh, I always look at people when I talk to them.’ Her husband softly added, ‘But we tend to talk to the kids from one room to the other ‘it’s not frequent that we’re in front of them as we talk.
We’re doing chores, they’re on the computer or watching TV.’ When they came back the following week, they had put an emphasis on just talking more face-to-face with their children and liked the closeness they felt.I also am reminded at the first of the year how little family I have left.
I’m an only child and the baby grandchild on both sides so all but three of my relatives are deceased. And on December 2 I had to euthanize my beloved tri-color Cocker Spaniel, Scooter, with end stage liver disease. In his 11 years with me, he became the official ‘head of the house’ even though he wasn’t my largest or oldest dog.
He had full responsibility (in his mind) of taking care of me and he really did. He lived life fully and with joy and exuberance. I miss him dearly. I hope to be the person he thought I was as he believed I was just about perfect. I know he was (except when he was a puppy and I called him Scooterrorist as he thought he should rearrange all of my silk flower arrangements!).So stop the perfectionism.
Try to relax more. Take real time with those you love. There is no such thing as quality time unless there is also quantity. And always remember to say ‘I love you’ to those you cherish. Have a wonderful year!
Copyright 2018, Sharon Scott. No reproduction without written permission from author.
The guide for parents/educators on how to peer-proof children and teens is Peer Pressure Reversal: An Adult Guide to Developing a Responsible Child, 2nd Ed.
Her popular book for teens, How to Say No and Keep Your Friends, 2nd Ed., empowers kids to stand out,not just fit in!
A follow-up book for teens, When to Say Yes! And Make More Friends, shows adolescents how to select and meet quality friends and, in general, feel good for doing and being good.
Sharon also has a charming series of five books for elementary-age children each teaching an important living skill and "co-authored" with her savvy cocker spaniel Nicholas who makes the learning fun.Their book on managing elementary-age peer pressure is titled Too Smart for Trouble.
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