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The Secret to Happiness: Relax!

I have a history of being a little high strung.  Throughout my life my brother and sister have often called me "out of control". I tried to look perfect and act perfect. It was a lot of pressure.

Also, I was the sister who was always yelling and trying to keep everyone in line. I am the oldest, but the smallest. I may have a classic Napoleon complex...

Then, I got pregnant. It made me slow down and calm down. I realized that all of the things that I was obsessing about weren't worth it.

I also realized that being so tightly wound didn't help. It didn't make me more efficient. It didn't make me more effective. And it didn't make me more likable. Quite the opposite. It also wasn't quite a lot of fun.

Motherhood Has Helped Me Relax

I can't say that I am completely Zen now. However, I can say that the process of pregnancy, motherhood, and growing up taught me to relax. Ironically, being more relaxed has made me more efficient and effective. I also think that it has made me more fun to be around. I know that it has made me a better mom because I am focused on what is important instead of focused on appearances.

This morning I had a presentation at 8:00AM. It was farther away than my office so I had to leave earlier. I keep mascara in my car for days when I am running late. Today, because I deviated from my routine I simply forgot to apply it. (I had applied eye liner, but I have been a mascara devotee since high school and feel naked without it.) I gave my presentation with confidence believing that I looked my best. It wasn't until I arrived at my office and looked in a mirror that I realized that my lashes were bare. 

Pre-pregnancy seeing my bare lashes would have ruined my entire day. Today, it was just a detail.

It's not that I no longer care about my appearance. I do, very much. It's that I have better perspective. Forgetting my mascara no longer ruins my day. Having spit-up in my hair does not make the earth stop spinning. And not having a fresh pedicure does not make me feel like a failure.

Like Scarlett O'Hara, I have learned that tomorrow is always another day. And as long as it is on the horizon, I have lots of opportunities to look fabulous. Finally, finally, finally, I have learned to relax and that has made all of the difference.

That being said, like my toddler, I do still throw a tantrum now and then.  Given all of the things that I'm juggling, I think that's allowed don't you?!

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