Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Being Perfect Versus Being Right — Wander Woman by Marcia Reynolds

Being perfect versus being right, a subhead of Chapter 4 in Marcia Reynolds' book Wander Woman, How High-Achieving Women Find Contentment and Direction, grabbed my attention. I had always thought that being perfect and being right went together but she pointed out, with a zing, that there's quite a difference.

A bit of background first. This is a business book for women, focused on "the new generation of high-achieving women: confident, ambitious, and driven, yet anxious, discontented, and above all, restless." Is that you intelligent woman reader? Or was it you and you have already figured out how to strategize accordingly?

Back to Chapter 4. Three assumptions keep the high-achieving women Reynolds is addressing, stuck in a repetitive cycle of ultimate dissatisfaction.

• There is a right answer and it is mine (what, are you blind).
• Everything is up to me. (this place is full of idiots).
• I will always be disappointed (nothing or no one measures up.)

She goes on to say, "When your mind is full of judgment it is using the mental resources you need to see opportunities.. . . Even if your judgment is justified in the moment,it doesn't serve you in the long run. It limits your choices. It reduces your power." Yikes, I thought as I read. This rings too loud a bell in my head. 

This kind of judgmental thinking is the opposite of negative self-talk: NST is a form of "I'm not OK." Judgmental thinking is "You, and everyone else but me is not OK." Each type of self-talk lead to a different outcome, neither so good.

 I'm intrigued with Wander Woman, even though I (judgmentally) don't think the title/subtitle aptly describes the concept Reynold's is addressing.  I'll write more later as I read on — particularly about what the judgmental thinking intelligent woman can do to abandon some of her obstructive assumptions, if she chooses to do so!
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