Set the Standard

I fully admit that I am picky. In most areas of my life, I like having things just so. My senses, whether that be sight, scent or sound, are drawn to the littlest details, and those tend to be the ones that drive me bonkers.

From an outside perspective, I’m sure people think that I am far too conscious of my surroundings, honing in on things that really don’t matter. It’s not a big deal if there’s a random fuzz on the floor, no reason to question a random noise.

Yes, I realize that in the grand scheme of life, that little bit of toothpaste at the bottom of the bathroom sink won’t matter much. But those little things and what they add up go far beyond a need for tidiness.

What some call picky, I call having certain standards for myself and how I choose to live. We all have our own tipping points, our ideal situations that we feel the most comfortable, and we cannot expect everybody to view life through the same lens. What I consider clean and what you consider clean could be two completely different things, and that’s okay.

As I’ve become more aware and appreciative of who I am as a person and who I want to embody, my standards have grown and solidified even further. That’s just something natural that comes with time for all of us. It’s easy to isolate those desires we have and build ourselves around them. It’s a whole other story when other people and factors get thrown into the mix.

No matter the situation, whether it’s a stressful time in life or a balance of relationships with others, our own standards can sometimes go by the wayside. If you’re anything like me, I am nice and, at times, too nice. I like taking care of others and making sure they are comfortable and happy before I think about myself. But regardless if others intend to do so or not, a caring nature can be taken advantage of.

We know who we each are and what we want. While some people are worth compromising with, finding a common ground for equal contentment, if you’re losing sight of yourself in the process, something has to give. With the right people, you shouldn’t feel like you have to slow down and change your standards. The whole point of having those standards set is to have high-quality people around you that can meet and exceed them. That’s how you know they are worth keeping around.

There’s a fine line to be aware of, too. Because yes, you can be too picky if it means that everybody else’s lives require readjustment, if you aren’t able to be flexible with day-to-day occurrences, or you develop a mentality that sets you up on some pedestal. Reality check, we’re all in the same boat. None of us is better than anybody else.

And make sure that whatever standards you have, make sure they come from your own instincts. If your standards are entirely focused on superficial means, ones that may be influenced by societal or others’ standards, then reevaluate. For me and anybody else, stop being so hard on yourself. What are your true priorities?

Having standards is how we stay true to ourselves. It’s how we preserve our morals and values. It’s how we understand our own natures to ensure we’re living as our best selves. So don’t feel guilty for perhaps feeling like a broken record for what you prefer. Or feel like you’re disappointing yourself or others for voicing your thoughts. Never feel like you should settle for anything less than what you deserve.

Because you deserve the best. You deserve to feel satisfied and content. You deserve to have that critical moment where you can take a deep breath and know that you are happy with your life, yourself, and the little details in between. It’s not an easy feat to get to that point, but knowing your worth is its own form of self-care. You won’t be immune to hardship, to misfortune, to difficult times, but keep those standards and desires close to you and with the right intentions, they will reach fruition.

I’m young, but my age does not undermine that already, I have met people and obstacles that challenged what I believed. There’s a difference between stepping outside of your comfort zone, and stepping too far or too often away from what matters to you. In my standards, I have found amazing people and opportunities I could have never imagined, especially if I hadn’t been adamant about my work ethic nor the quality of my family and friends. As with any lesson, it is best learned through trial and error, along with determination and faith that you will find your place, with yourself, with others, and with the world.

Does that necessarily justify scrubbing away every crevice in my living quarters? Probably not. But in creating an atmosphere inside and outside of my home that supports what I hold dear and the goals I hope to accomplish, those are standards I do not want to downplay. They are what make me who I am. Nobody else can, without my consent, change these standards or neglect acknowledging them. And who knows, maybe as I continue to grow and learn, I will adjust my standards accordingly. That’s just life. I guess whoever else is willing to get on this wild ride with me, hop on board.

Take care, and keep the faith. -Allie

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