November 12, 2009

Letting go of perfection


First off, my practicum is going well. I'm seeing lots of clients and loving it. I have good supervision, and an even better cohort. We're very supportive of each other in so many ways.

One of the difficulties that I'm having is simply letting go of some things. I think about my clients way too much. There's this saying that's bandied about my agency a lot, and it's "Don't work harder than the client." I'm struggling with it a bit in that I take on so much responsibility...way too much. I'm researching, thinking, pondering and it's probably leading to burnout. I have to let go of this perfectionism of having to do all the right things all the time, and trust myself and the process...and the clients!

I've been catching myself and bringing myself back to the moment a lot lately. My mind will wander to a certain client or two, and I'll take a deep breath (well, to be honest, after admonishing myself for letting my mind go to this...shame, shame), and then come back to the present. If this means coming back to the breath, so be it! If it means distraction, so be it.

My mantra is "learning to live is learning to let go"...

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5 comments:

Still Dreaming said...

I can SO relate to this. I constantly work to find the balance between being there for my clients and not letting them fall through the cracks, and making sure my clients do the work not me.

kara said...

I know what you mean. My field placement is in a pediatric floor of a hospital and it's so hard to see the situations that these kids are in sometimes. But what keeps me going is knowing that we are planting the seeds of change :)

Sienna said...

It's good to hear that someone else out there has this same issue. =) Just figuring out how to let go is a lot easier said than done!

Leslie said...

Good for you for recognizing this challenge! Self-awareness is so important to what we do and is the cornerstone of a good burout prevention plan. The challenge you describe is something we all have to figure out and seems to get better with time and experience. In the mean time, keep verbalizing these thougths, talk about it in supervision, and share with trusted colleagues/peers for support.

Andrea said...

Truth be told, this issue never goes away entirely. But... we all work harder with our first few clients -because we have to. It will be isntructive to look backwards in a few years to see how much has become instinctive. Excpet, of course, it's not instinct; it's content that you mastered. Be gentle with yourselves!!!

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