My Coast Guard

Dear Coast Guard Family: The Choice Between Peace and Perfection

By Rachel Conley, MyCG Columnist

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How we spend our time is one of life’s greatest and most impactful choices. I spend a lot of my time trying to be perfect. The (hard) truth is – perfection is unattainable. It doesn’t matter how much I care or how hard I work, it’s a goal that I will never meet; a constant source of self-doubt and failure. Being a perfectionist is all-consuming – it leaves time for little else, but it often accomplishes nothing. 

I have always channeled my perfectionism into caring for others. But, I’ve come to realize, people don’t need perfect – they need real. My family doesn’t need perfect – they just need me. The “me” that’s not burned out and always stressed. 

So, today and every day, I must choose peace over perfection. I must give myself grace. I must focus on what truly matters and not get lost in the details. I must live in the moment, without distraction or worry. 

I must ask myself the right questions:

  • Is this something that I need to do?
  • Does this positively impact the people who are most important to me?  
  • Does this bring me joy?
  • Is this healthy or am I overextending myself?
  • Does this meet my goals?
  • Will this matter in the long-run?   

I must live a life that creates the legacy I want – a wife worthy of a lifetime, a mother worthy of emulating, and a person that makes a difference. 
Here’s to a well-lived imperfectly, perfect life!