Saturday, September 29, 2012

Positives and perfectionism

I probably deserve the B that getting an 80% grade on an exam gives (could still change before the class is over, but that is what I got on the first exam). But I was relieved to see that the teacher was giving back some points for questions lots of people missed or that weren't quite clear. I'm back in A land. Barely, but there I am. I do wonder about how accurate the new grade is. I mean, if I really knew the information at an A level, wouldn't I have gotten a greater percentage right? And there my perfectionism comes and messes up a nice thing. Again.

Wait, this was supposed to be a positive post. Let's rephrase that. I'm back to having an A- in both of my classes instead of having a B in one!

Now for the rest of my good news. I finally went ahead and talked to my boss about working afternoons not working well for me. And it was okay! So soon I should be back to working mornings without coming back for afternoons. That was a relief.

Now the positive part of the post is done. The relief was soon countered by second guessing myself. Not enough to get rid of all my relief, though.

Wait, one more positive. The Miracle Ball Method. My sister had it when I visited her, and my back was hurting due to sleeping a lot (due to the stomach flu, which thankfully was very short and not too severe), so I tried it. And was so impressed, that I went and bought it with it's two balls right away. Basically, in Elaine Petrone's Miracle Ball Method, you lay on the floor with the ball in various places and learn to relax, which can help your muscles, your pain, your stress, your figure, your posture, sound too good to be true yet? But here is the thing; it worked for me, at least the first time. It helped me relax. And it was perhaps the first relaxation method that I have had so much success with. Maybe this will work in a way that I couldn't get some of the mindfulness stuff to work. (It does, of course, share characteristics with mindfulness.) So anyway, this is my newest, exciting step in pursuing greater mental and physical health.

Now back to perfectionism, did you know it could mess with homework in a class on acoustics of speech? It sure can. I was measuring the length of a part of a sound. And remeasuring. And wondering which exact millisecond count to use. Yes, I know. Very detailed and immensely important. (Actually I could counter that by deleting milliseconds from sounds without changing the sound much at all.) I finally got over that somewhat, and stuck to measuring things only like three or four times instead of however many I used to be doing it (wow, that doesn't sound so good when I actually write it out). Then I moved on to the next part of the assignment where I deleted parts of one sound to make it sound like another. Only, if I didn't like a change, I'd try to delete it. And maybe I started making changes and undoing things too many times too fast, and then the program would mess up and I'd have to wait and start over again. Or call it good enough, like I did in one case (inviting the honesty OCD to invade, asking if I really did the assignment since I didn't re-do it many times). Oh, wonderful. OCD has come to visit.

My psychiatrist thought that was a funny way to talk about OCD, when I said it visited [a stronger episode] about once a week. "Hello, OCD, will you please go away again?" He said jokingly, appreciating my term. But actually, isn't that quite accurate?

"Hi, OCD, why did you have to show up today? I'm in a bad mood. Oh, that's why you showed up? Duh. Well, I still don't like you. But you leave faster when I invite you in. So how about it? Whatcha got? What accusations are up your sleeve? I'm a bad person? Oh, depression already said that. You are behind the times. I'm... what? Oh, a bad student. Wouldn't that figure from being a bad person? Not necessarily? When were you so logical? I cheat? Ah, now you're talking. What if someone reads my post and thinks I actually cheat? Oh, now you are really starting to call out my anxiety, but it shrank again as I typed my reply. Oh? You've interrupted my blog post enough? You'll come back later? Deal."

Anyway, hopefully with less work, my mood will perk up. Otherwise, I'll be tempted to look into a light box or something, in case this mood dip is related to the season. Or just lay on the floor with a Miracle Ball. At least that doesn't take much effort.


  1. Hi Abigail. I'm glad the Miracle Ball worked for you. Maybe I need to look into that myself!

    I'm so glad that you talked to your boss about the afternoons and that things will work out better for you. Good for you for getting the courage to talk about it!!

  2. I need to look into the Miracle Ball as well!

    Oh, I am so proud of you for talking to your boss about the afternoons! I'm so glad you got it all worked out! I know that took a lot for you to do and I say, well done!

  3. Good for you Abigail, for talking with your boss about your work schedule. I hope you will see good results soon!

    I've never heard of the Miracle Ball, but that is so great that you were able to relax with it. I think I need to look into that!