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    Many concepts are timeless, but it takes just the right wording to take off. Or the exposure of being in a massively selling book. ;-)


    Jedi Training Journal #3.

    Still working on my “Why Jedi” assignment but trying to put some of the concepts to practice in daily life. Today was one of those days I desperately needed them. It was a really rough day at work. Last week my manager took me aside and talked with me about some mistakes I had made (some pretty serious that effected our clients and patients) and some things I was doing wrong that some of the doctors didn’t like. It was a pretty serious talk and really upsetting to me. I have been there just about 7 months now, and I thought I was doing well. There were a few rough spots at the beginning–lots of things to learn meant a few mistakes here and there. Add to that the many months I have spent trying to get along with my co-worker who I just can’t stand, and its been perhaps the toughest start to a job I’ve ever had.
    I thought I was doing better. Obviously everyone makes mistakes but beyond one very large mistake that I made and personally apologized to the client for, I was unaware that there was so much dissatisfaction with my job performance. Perhaps it just seems worse than it actually is, but since then I have been obsessed about not making any mistakes. Which of course stresses me out, and leads to more mistakes. It felt like I could do no right today. And sadly, is not the first time I have felt this way. The other day I even thought to myself that I was just done with the job. Thing is I can’t afford to leave the job even if I really was sure I wanted to …discounts on vet care are too good to loose!

    I am a people pleaser and have been fighting to get past my perfectionist tendencies. So this talk with my manager the other day was just a huge blow. Perhaps more than it should have been. I tried to bring my mind back to the present and to focus on here and now. I tried to be mindful of my surroundings, my thoughts, my feelings. I even went for a walk around the block on my lunch break to enjoy the fresh air and beautiful weather. I think it helped a bit, but by the end of the day I still wanted to cry. Talking about it with my manager helped, talking about it with my mom helped, still I am now dreading going back to work for fear of making more mistakes. I am catastrophising and trapped in all the stupid mind games I thought I had overcome.

    I am proud of my self for being aware enough to take time for mindfulness, for talking to my manager today, taking a walk today, talking things through both here and with my mom. I am proud of myself for being aware that I am catastrophising and using what I have learned from therapy and my bid of Jedi training to try and calm my mind.


    It is impossible to never make mistakes. Taking it hard only makes it easier to make mistakes because you aren’t focused on your work in a way that helps you. It puts you into an energetic state of inviting more mistakes in. You recognize the pattern, which is the first step. Play with this question this weekend. “Who would I be, if I knew I couldn’t fail?” Just ask this question repeatedly throughout the day and see how you feel. Let me know tomorrow sometime how it is going.

    And Yes, good job for applying what you have learned!!!!

    Kol Drake
    “You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” ~ Buddha

    Okay, you made mistakes. And, being a perfectionist — you beat yourself up over it more then the manager probably ever would. The big question should be — did you LEARN from your mistake? Is it something you will ever repeat or did you acknowledge the error, made the corrections/appropriate ‘fixes’ and then moved on?

    Fretting over mistakes and then getting so uptight you make NEW mistakes — well, you yourself realize that is a downward spiral.

    There are two levels on which we exist.

    The first is the one where we are right now — you and me, as we read this >> EXISTENCE. I am sitting at my keyboard trying to come up with wise and wonderful advice; you are probably sound asleep with your kitty buddies at this time of night. We are where we are and — we are okay.

    The second level meanwhile, towers above us. This level is the lofty realm of EXPECTATION. It is really not a bad place; a lot of our goals and dreams are up there, and when we reach them with the help of ladders or loved ones lifting us, we can touch those aspirations, make them our own.

    Unfortunately there is a pile of rubbish stored up here too: suggestions, comments, recommendations, and lectures that we have collected throughout our lives (from others and even lectures to ourself.) And while meant in the mostly ‘proper thought/manner’, a lot of those things are subliminal standards spouted by people or groups who believe they know how best to live. And we sometimes compound our stress and remorse by dwelling on everything we think we should do (i.e.. being perfect, etc.)

    The gap between level one, our present self, and level two, the domineering arena of social and cultural “standards” will never be closed. Even if we make very few mistakes, we will still have some imperfections that we could address. And that is not a ‘bad thing’ — just something else to LEARN from.

    So what can we do?
    We can start reorienting our thinking.

    Step #1: Be good to yourself.
    It is no good trying to fight against something you have just done (or beating yourself over ‘past performance) when you are feeling bad about it. Give yourself time to calm down and regain your composure. Basically, let go and chill out. WHICH you did with the ‘time out’ and walks, etc. Instinctively, you are heading in the proper direction!

    Step #2: Acknowledge what caused you to do what you did.
    This step requires a hefty amount of honesty on your part. If it was a mistake (or mistakes) due to ignorance of procedure(s), then — make certain you KNOW those procedures so the mistakes will not be repeated. If they were / are mistakes due to ‘in the moment’ stress — then you KNOW learning how to control those ‘stress points’ is something you are going to have to work on. Either way (or another I am totally overlooking), in the process of admitting a problem and addressing how to ‘fix it’ — be nice to yourself.

    Step #3: Start small to address the problem.
    “How do we eat a bantha? One bite at a time.”
    Immediate action can be applied to any circumstance where you feel out of control. If you over-spend, set a generous but reasonable budget and stick to it; if you suck at saying “no” to people, practice in front of the mirror, maybe do it over the phone to start and then branch out the more confident you become. If it is a major ‘routine’ / procedural change you have to ingrain into your mind — don’t compound the chance for errors by cramming it all in in one giant gulp. The point is to make a small change and grow into the space that change creates.

    Step #4: Confront your expectations.
    The point of this step is not to rationalize unhealthy choices or actions; it is to think of all the good things you may not consider when you are being hard on yourself over one arguably bad decision or cringeworthy mistake. In the grand scheme of EVERYTHING, it may not be such a big deal — but it is a ‘deal’ in your day-to-day life. So, acknowledge it; stare it in the eye; take a deep breathe and… let it go.

    Step #5: Love yourself.
    Okay. Being an old geezer and it’s late — my mind took this way too many ‘not so sage’ ways. *rolls up newspaper* bad jedi… bad.

    Seriously, this is probably the hardest step. Standing in front of a mirror saying “I love you” may seem really silly — maybe you will even laugh at the thought of even trying it. That nagging inner ‘voice’ says it is stupid but, really, it is not. It is very sensible.

    How can you follow through on any of the other steps if you do not respect and care for yourself? How can you beam positive energy to folks (and the critters) if you can’t make the effort to love yourself? Loving yourself is one of the best things you can do. AND it’s not a narcissistic thing… it is being open enough to say — hey, I may make mistakes but I’m still a lovable , good person… and I can live with me… er, myself.

    Love yourself, even if you have some less-than-ideal habits. You can only overcome these if you stop kicking yourself when you are down. Instead, give yourself a hug and get up. Spread your arms wide and give the Universe a big hug and let the Force beam in and hug back. Keep moving forward!

    All that said, the point is — you can turn this painful situation around and be free of it. You just have to start with you.


    Thanks! So much wonderful advice. I think #3- Start Small and #4 Confront Your Expectations are the two I probably don’t think about. I just skim over them trying to do #1 and 2 and trying really hard to do #5. :) The perfectionist is something I thought I had recovered from, but something about my new co-worker brings out the worst in me. Which I have to work on, but first I have to understand why I respond the way I do to her.

    Today was a better day mentally. Just about everything that could happen to stress me out happened though. Fell back asleep after my alarm went off, garage door wouldn’t open, neighbor blocking the alley with their van. Thank the Force for light traffic Saturday mornings though; I was still able to make it to work 5 minutes early. Woohoo!

    Work was exceptionally crazy and stressful considering the type of appointments we had. I found myself with stress that was higher than the situations called for. I was recently prescribed Xanax for my new panic attacks. Stupid Generalized Anxiety Disorder. I don’t want to take them. I felt really good when I took one last night. It took all of my strength not to take one today, despite the stress and anxiety I was feeling. Instead one of our clients brought us chocolate. I ate far, far too much chocolate. It’s better than drugs. (ok so refined sugar is a drug in its own way, but at least one I am already addicted too :silly: ). Besides, how do you fight a Dementor? Chocolate. Oh Rowling!

    When it was time for my lunch break I skipped lunch (too much chocolate) and walked down to the park. I spent 20 minutes sitting on the grass in the shade of a tree, taking in the sun, the warm weather and the peacefulness. It was just what I needed.



    After re-centering I was much better for the rest of the day. Until I said something really stupid that shouldn’t have been said in front of a client, in front of a client. And my co-worker jokingly told me to “silently beat yourself up about it.” Which I proceeded to do for hours.

    Picked up “The Giver” from the library (how did I not read this as a child?) and read that for a good chunk of early evening. Cleaned out some more stuff, rearranged some stuff and managed to get myself just a bit more space under the bed for the cat. I was proud of myself and got rid of some art supplies I have been holding on to but know I am hardly likely to ever use again. I went through a painting and scrap booking phase. I was down to the bare bones painting and stamps but still had a hard time parting with them. I love painting; however I don’t have much skill in it (at least in the type of pictures I like to paint), don’t like to have my finished works hanging around, and it hurts my hand to paint. So away those things went. They will get used, instead of taking up space and collecting dust. It was hard, but I was proud of myself for parting with them. One can always get more paint brushes later.

    Over all, more good moments than bad.


    Some great progress. Please avoid beating yourself up though. It really isn’t helpful.

    When a cat makes a mistake do you berate it for hours? Or do you accept the mistake and move on? The same for kids. You deserve the same respect from yourself. :-) you are an amazing person. We see it. We see how hard you try. Be kind to yourself. Please. It will change everything for you.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk – Please forgive typos


    Thanks Jax. This is something I have done to myself for as long as I can remember, so it is a very hard habit to break. I am trying though. Sometimes I just get in this bad mind place and the angry voices of Depression and Anxiety overpower my own voice. So while I will logically know, and personally know that beating myself up over it doesn’t help, the voices just get going. Which is when I have to distract my brain. I’m working. Hopefully one day I will get there! :thanks

    Kol Drake

    When you get to ‘that point’ — that is when you gather all your feline family together and say, “okay, here’s what happened; tell me what you think.”

    Jax has the way of it — you would not beat up on a kitty for making a mistake or ‘boo boo’ in the wrong spot… why use yourself as a 24/7 punching bag? Ya, being human, we make mistakes. Okay. So, you burnt the meatloaf or spilled the urine sample or cussed in front of a client… *rolls up newspaper* bad Katie Rose bad…

    Now that *that* is taken care of, take this hug of forgiveness and acceptance and — move forward.

    Treat yourself with the respect you deserve.
    If you can’t be nice to yourself; why would you expect others to not do the same?
    So… once the feline family has their say, accept their criticism and then — move forward.


    please keep this bookmarked and refer to it often.
    Jenny Lawson is hilarious as well, so reading her blog could be a source of amusement for you. I’ve read her book and even met her in person at a book signing. She struggles a lot with anxiety and depression, but she’s turning that into something good, helping whoever she can when she’s well enough to do so. She also has very fun cats. ;-)


    When I read your latest post one thing came to my mind which one of the teachers said during the martial art seminar which I attended during the long weekend.

    He said, that he loves the line of the song “All of me” from John Legend which says: “Cause all of me; Loves all of you; Love your curves and all your edges; ALL YOUR PERFECT IMPERFECTIONS. …” Maybe, I mean, I don’t know the song but I trust in this teacher that it is a good one, listening to the song can help to raise your mood when You feel down the next time.

    Furthermore I would like to ask You, as I don’t know it, if you’re anything interested in Qi-Gong or breathing techniques in general!? The same teacher I just had been talking about also gave us a nice breathing exercise during which one imagines the following words during the single inhale and exhale cycles – all of them are done with a different movement and posture of the hands and unfortunately I cannot find it quickly but if You would be interested in it, I might do my best to sketch it up for You.
    Anyway, what I wanted to say, the key words are:
    – Love
    – Forgiveness
    – Healing
    – Evolution
    – Harmony
    – Creation
    All of them you imagine for yourself as well as for all of the things which are important to you. So, imagine giving love to all your family members, your dear friends, your co-workers but also to yourself. The same for forgiveness and so on.
    When we did it, I really felt that this exercise raised my mood!

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