What If I Fail?

by Sherry Riter in Health

Do not follow
where the path may lead.
Go instead where there is
no path and leave a trail.

~Ralph Waldo Emerson~

big fushia azalea bush

The one thing that holds me back most often is the fear of FAILING.

I hate that word!

I’m a perfectionist. That should almost be completely self-explanatory. I fight that nagging voice all the time that tells me I must be perfect. I can’t be perfect!

I try to make up for it in the things I do well and usually go way overboard. I’ve gotten better, but in the past…

Vacuuming the house once a week would have been sufficient, but I vacuumed EVERY DAY. I also dusted the furniture, cleaned the bathroom, etc. EVERY DAY. I didn’t want any fuzzies (dust) to be anywhere. If Miss White Glove came by to give my home a test, I wanted to pass.

That’s obsessive.

It is also a waste of time.

I was a slave to doing chores.

Needless chores.

Pointless chores!

A large portion of this obsessiveness was based on my upbringing and generational obsessions.

The other part was simply my personality.

I don’t know why all the women in my family acted this way.

Now I see it as a sickness.

I hope my grandmother doesn’t haunt me tonight for saying that she was sick…BUT SHE WAS SICK!

It took years for me to break those habits.

I forged ahead down paths unknown and listened to ridicule for having a dirty house.

HELLO! My house wasn’t dirty nor am I a failure just because I stopped vacuuming every day.

It was hard though to go against all that programming in my head and the upturned noses of the “sick” people…Now that sounds funny!

I’m proud to say I broke the habit.

Habits CAN BE broken.

See your goal, go where there is no path and make a trail.

…And ignore the “sick” people.

…My mother and sister aren’t “sick” any more either.

This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lola June 6, 2009 at 7:08 am

I think sometimes it can be a slippery slope going from obsessive behavior to try to be less obsessive, to the other extreme. I'm not saying that happens to everyone, I'm just saying it can go the other way as well.


2 Olga June 6, 2009 at 10:54 am

Hi There! What a curious blog you have…interesting subjects! Take care and stay positive! Cheers!


3 I am Harriet June 6, 2009 at 5:53 pm

Amen. Great post.

I just wanted to stop by and thank you for signing up for the June Comment Challenge.


4 Stacie June 6, 2009 at 8:35 pm

Oh boy you sound like me. I have OCD when it comes to cleaning my floors. I have to wash my kitchen, hallway and bathroom by hand because I can't stand the way the mop leaves more dirt and streak marks! Stopping by from Harriets Comment Challenge!


5 carma June 7, 2009 at 1:29 am

I can relate to so much of this. I used to stress if I didn't get all my cleaning chores in each week. I have loosened up considerably and if the place only gets a thorough vacuuming every 3 weeks- so be it!

Stopping by to say "hi" and welcome to SITS!
carma 🙂


6 lesleehorner June 7, 2009 at 12:04 pm

My husband's mother was like this and over our ten year marriage he has had to adjust to not living in a perfectly clean house. But I have to remind him that her cleanliness was way over the top!

I'm so glad I stopped in. Your blog is great, I plan to bookmark it and keep reading! I'm glad you followed me on Twitter so I could find this site!


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