The Z of Living Imperfectly: Will It Be A Zig or Will It Be A Zag? #atozchallenge

It is related of a certain king that on a particular occasion he turned his tea into his saucer, contrary to the etiquette of society, because two country ladies, whose hospitalities he was enjoying, did so. That king was a gentleman; and this anecdote serves to illustrate an important principle : namely, that true politeness and genuine good manners often not only permit, but absolutely demand, a violation of some of the arbitrary rules of etiquette. Bear this fact in mind – Martine’s Handbook to Etiquette and Guide to True Politeness, Arthur Martine, Dick & Fitzgerald Publishers, 1866.

Z Challenge LetterMy friend Z is finally here. This Challenge has really been a trip.

When I came up with the topic of living imperfectly, I thought I would write about some of the ways I have chosen  to live life my way despite societal expectations and pressure. Instead my Challenge posts became a journey about my attitude towards my own perfectionist tendencies and perfectionism in general. At times, these posts have been heavy going, but in some ways were clearly necessary for my own self development. Yet other times, the posts have felt light and easy and a whole lot of fun. And looking through the old etiquette books was a constant source of amusement. I thank Mr Martine, for his often entertaining exposition of how gentlemen and gentlewomen should conduct themselves in the late nineteenth century.

I felt like my zig-zag through the Challenge reflects my zig-zag through life.

Having taken this journey I now have some clarity around choices. Cause and effect is now more obvious and while we all have our own recipe for happiness, this Challenge has helped me find some of the main ingredients for mine. It has also helped me to know myself better.

The choice to zig or zag has therefore become clearer.

After this Challenge, my ZIG list would something look like this:







Leading from the front


Not being held hostage to fears


Thinking Young



My ZAG list would look like something this:

Always needing to be right


Contaminated time

Constantly ignoring my needs


Orthodoxy in behaviour


Seeking Validation

Don't fear perfection

Now that I have these lists, I feel less confused and somewhat energized. It was a worthwhile, if not always easy, exercise.

Thanks to all of you who joined me for the Challenge, whether it was for one post or more, you have all contributed to this journey. To my fellow A to Zers, I have appreciated your creativity and look forward to continuing to build the alphabet with you one post at a time. Whether you’re still posting a “zed” post or a “zee” post, enjoy the last day!!

About the curtain raiserhttp://raisingthecurtain.netI have spent my life in offices. For now I am putting that behind me and preparing for the second act. Middle age didn't come with acceptable signposts so I am making my own through my writing. A journey shared is more fun than going it solo.

19 thoughts on “The Z of Living Imperfectly: Will It Be A Zig or Will It Be A Zag? #atozchallenge

  1. Y a perfect ending post -perhaps possible because you’ve let go of the need for perfection? I am happy to hear that working on your posts has brought you new insights to clarify your intentions. Congratulations on completing the Challenge, even when the burden was weighty. I enjoyed the vintage etiquette quotes and learned so much from your daily writings. They will continue to be a resource for me in the months ahead.

  2. I really enjoyed your theme throughout this challenge and reading your posts each day. I love the zig-zag list in today’s post. It is certainly an interesting way to summarize the journey you’ve taken during this challenge! Looking forward to more 🙂

    • Thanks Joanne. The Challenge is a great vehicle to meet new bloggers and very grateful to have had out paths cross. Will definitely keep up with your posts after the Challenge as well 🙂

  3. Judy, I love you Zig list, but it is the Zag list that gets my attention. If we all could sand off the rough edges of our Zag lists (which resemble yours for the most part, with a few add ins and take offs) or even reduce the number of occurrences on the list, just think of how much better we would be individually and collectively. If I could reduce “contaminated time” that would be huge, by itself. Best wishes to you for doing more Zigging and straightening out the Zagging. This gives new meaning to ZZ Top. BTG

  4. Nice post…sometimes I zig and wished I zagged, lol. I’m planning to press forward in the month of May with blogging in the a-z style…do swing by.

I would really love to hear what you have to say. C'mon.. you know you want to!

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