Friday, August 10, 2012

{Self} Control and Forgiveness

Earlier this week, I wrote about birth order and how I felt about being the oldest child. I didn't really get into the qualities of oldest children, but this week, my oldest child tendencies have been painfully obvious.

As many of you know, I have been basically running my department at work as a one woman show. For the past (almost) 4 months, I've done everything for our department. And I love it. I love it so much that I'm having a hard time giving parts of it up to my new colleague.

See, oldest children often have a problem giving up control. Because we are born first and take on responsibility before (and for) our siblings, we are used to having control. Giving it up can be painful.

 As relieved as I am to get some help with my work, I've also found that I'm having a really hard time handing over control of programs I've already started on. I feel an ownership over my work and I have a hard time trusting other people to get work done. I think that's why I always hated group projects in school.

Oh, and I don't like sharing the spotlight. Imagine that. Someone who had the spotlight ripped out from under her after two years of being everyone's sunshine hates sharing the spotlight. It's all starting to make sense, right? First borns strive for perfection and strive for the praise they receive when they succeed. I love getting recognition for the things that I do, often to a fault.

Remember last week when I forgot Bronx at daycare? Even my reaction to this can be explained by birth order traits. When I searched for first born traits, here's one thing that came up: "Your deep-seated fear of rejection means you dread failure. And because you ask so much of yourself, you’re less likely to forgive yourself when you don’t manage to do what’s expected."

Giving up some control and letting go of some of my responsibilities is something that would help me to actually take control of the responsibilities I do have. I could be more effective, more efficient, and frankly, happier if I could just let go.

So these are my current goals.

Let go of some of the pride and control.
Give someone else a chance in the spotlight.
Forgive myself when I'm not perfect.


Katie Price said...

Ahhhh... this was so interesting & made sense to me! I'm the oldest too, and the "oldest" qualities you mentioned really match my personality too. That perfectionist tendency is really hard to get over!

Lacey in the City said...

It's funny because I'm technically the middle sister, but my older sister is 11 years my senior, so she wasn't around for most of my everday growing up. So I think I possess a handful of these oldest sibling traits that you're mentioning.

And I missed the forgetting Bronx at the zoo...must catch up!

Anonymous said...

I'm a first born too and can relate to all of this! Love your blog. :)