In this episode, I’m diving into a topic that hits close to home for many of us – the relentless pursuit of perfection and the art of embracing B+ work.  I’ll be honest with you – I was going to title it “Doing B- Work,” but I thought that might freak accountants out a little, so I decided to be gentle and title it “Doing B+ Work.”

Let’s start by acknowledging the elephant in the room: the never-ending pressure to be perfect. As accountant moms, we often find ourselves juggling a huge amount of responsibilities – from accounting work to managing the household chaos at home. 

The weight of societal expectations and the desire to prove ourselves can lead us down a path of perfectionism that, if we’re being honest, can be downright exhausting.

How many times have you felt that you need to be flawless in every aspect of your life to be valued? How often have you hesitated to share your work or ideas because they didn’t meet the elusive standards of perfection?

Here’s the thing: we need to give ourselves permission to be human.  Unfortunately, perfectionism is like a sneaky intruder that creeps into our lives, whispering that anything less than perfect is a failure. 

But here’s the truth: perfection is an illusion, and chasing it can leave us feeling drained and unfulfilled. In this episode, I’m going to unravel the layers of perfectionism and explore a refreshing concept – the power of B+ work.

Why B+ work? Because it’s the sweet spot between striving for excellence and recognizing that it’s okay to be human. It’s about setting realistic expectations, valuing progress over perfection, and finding joy in the journey.

Believe me, I’ve also been there, wanting to get an A+ or a gold star on everything I do.  But at some point, I had to ask myself, “At what cost?” 

Striving for perfectionism at work and at home was creating a lot of problems for me.  I was so tightly wound, trying to be A+ in everything I did, that I didn’t stop to ask whether I was actually enjoying my life or whether I was having any fun.  

Let’s be honest: the pursuit of perfection can rob us of joy, time with our loved ones, and the chance to celebrate our wins – big and small.

I want us all to break free from the shackles of perfection, redefine success on our terms, and cultivate a work environment that values progress over perfection.

This week I’m going to discuss understanding the root of perfectionism, the power of B+ work, and strategies for embracing B+ work.  


Understanding the root of perfectionism 


Let’s start with what perfectionism is and where it comes from.  

Perfectionism is like having a demanding boss living in our heads, always pushing us to do everything flawlessly. It’s this idea that if we aren’t perfect, we’re not good enough. 

But guess what? Perfection is like a unicorn – it looks magical, but it doesn’t exist. And trying to catch it can leave us feeling tired and frustrated.

As accountant moms, we often face high expectations, both from ourselves and from the world. The pressure to have everything perfectly balanced – work, family, and those occasional moments for ourselves – can be overwhelming. 

Did you know that our brain plays a role in this perfectionist dance? Our lower, primitive brain, can sometimes go into overdrive, making us feel like everything has to be perfect, or else. 

The thing is that this part of our brain has been with us since humans lived in caves and it’s hardwired with a “survival of the fittest” mentality.  It pushes perfection because it believes it’s helping you survive.

Did you also know that our brain’s tendency to focus on mistakes, known as the negativity bias, can amplify the impact of perfectionism? 

Think about it: How many times have you stayed up late, fixing every tiny detail on a report, only to feel like it still wasn’t good enough? You’re not alone. Many of us nod our heads in agreement, understanding that the pursuit of perfection can lead to sleepless nights and unnecessary stress.

But here’s the thing: perfectionism doesn’t equal success.

I coached an accountant mom who found herself burned out, stressed, and questioning if all the sacrifices were worth it.  She had done well all throughout her school years and once she entered her accounting career, her need for gold stars followed her.

She admitted that she was addicted to outside validation, always striving to get acknowledgment at work and at home.  The problem was that it was affecting her physically, emotionally, and relationally. 

We discussed the impact of expectations and how to learn to be okay with B+ work and B+ effort.  We looked at the expectations she had, both the ones she set for herself and the ones society throws our way. 

She realized that the message she got over the years is that she can, and should, have it all – the perfect career, the perfect home, the perfect family. But here’s the truth she hadn’t realized: having it all doesn’t mean doing it all perfectly.

As accountant moms, we need to recognize that it’s okay not to be perfect. Our brain’s natural tendency to seek patterns and avoid mistakes is part of being human. 

It’s okay to ask for help, to delegate tasks, and to set boundaries. The pressure we feel to be flawless isn’t worth the toll on our mental health and our ability to enjoy the journey.

Remember, perfection is not the goal. It’s time to embrace imperfection, learn from our mistakes, and celebrate the progress we make. 


The power of B+ work 


Now that we understand the root cause of perfectionism, especially when it comes to how our brains are hard-wired, it’s time to discover a superpower – the magic of B+ work. 

What’s B+ work, you ask? Well, it’s like finding that perfect formula that balances striving for excellence while giving ourselves a break.

Success, for many of us, has been tangled up with the idea of getting a perfect score – be it at work or at home. But let’s flip the script a bit. 

Let’s begin to look at success as not about reaching perfection but about making progress, learning, and growing. Think of it as climbing a ladder where each step forward, no matter how small, is a win.

In the world of accounting, B+ work means getting the job done well, meeting the essentials, and leaving room for improvement. It’s about recognizing that life is a continuous learning journey, not a final exam with a pass or fail grade. 

We need to begin to ease up on ourselves and embrace the power of progress over perfection.

Imagine this – you’re working on a complex financial report, and there’s this urge to make every aspect of the report perfect. But what if, instead of chasing perfection, you focus on making steady progress? B+ work encourages us to value the journey, the process of learning, and the improvements we make along the way.

Think about it: the joy of learning new skills, the satisfaction of overcoming challenges, and the growth that comes from adapting to new situations. These are what’s important on the journey, and they make the process just as valuable as the outcome. 

B+ work celebrates these moments and reminds us that it’s okay not to have all the answers right away.

How about we all make a pact – to value progress over perfection.  Let’s all begin to see that B+ work is not a compromise; it’s a strategic move towards a more balanced, fulfilling life.


Strategies for embracing B+ work


Now let’s explore some super-practical strategies to make B+ work a habit in our lives.

First things first – let’s break it down, just like we break down complex financial reports. Setting realistic expectations is like creating a roadmap for success. 

Instead of overwhelming ourselves with the big picture, let’s break tasks into smaller, doable steps. Completing these steps becomes our victories, moving us steadily toward success.

Think about it this way: if you were solving a puzzle, you wouldn’t try to put all the pieces together at once, right? You’d start with the edges, find the corners, and work your way from there. Setting realistic expectations is like solving the puzzle of life – one piece at a time.

The next step is to address something every person needs – self-care!  You cannot sustain an accounting career with being a mom without recharging your energy. Taking breaks, getting enough sleep, and doing things you love are like the fuel that keeps your engine running.  

It’s not about doing everything all the time. It’s about recognizing when to take a step back, breathe, and give yourself the care you deserve. 

The third step is to advocate for yourself.  Advocating for yourself means communicating your needs and boundaries. Just as you would present a plan to stakeholders, communicate your capacity and let others know when you need support.

If you’re feeling overloaded, it’s okay to say, “I need help.” Remember, even the best leaders delegate and collaborate. Building a supportive environment not only benefits you but also creates a space where everyone thrives.

Last but not least, let’s talk about teamwork. A supportive work environment is like having a great team. 

Share your goals, discuss realistic timelines, and celebrate victories together. A good team understands that everyone has strengths and weaknesses, and together, you create a synergy.

Encourage open communication with your colleagues, just like you would discuss strategies. Building a supportive environment not only benefits you but also creates a workplace where everyone thrives.

In order to understand this better, let me share an example of an A+ approach versus a B+ approach in your personal life:

A+ Approach:

You’re hosting a family gathering, and in the pursuit of A+ perfection, you decide to plan an elaborate menu, create intricate decorations, and ensure every detail is flawless. As the event approaches, you find yourself stressed, trying to manage every aspect to meet an unrealistic standard. The gathering is beautiful, but you’re exhausted and unable to fully enjoy the time with your family.

B+ Approach:

In the B+ approach, you still aim for a wonderful family gathering, but you prioritize simplicity and balance. You plan a delicious yet manageable menu, choose decorations that add a nice touch without being overly elaborate, and focus on creating a warm and enjoyable atmosphere. This approach allows you to savor the moments with your family without feeling overwhelmed by perfection.

Let me share an example of an A+ approach versus a B+ approach at work:

A+ Approach:

You’re responsible for preparing the quarterly financial report for your department. In the pursuit of A+ perfection, you meticulously review every financial figure, cross-check calculations, and ensure the report is visually flawless. The process is time-consuming, and the report is impeccable, but the energy spent on perfection has affected your overall work-life balance.

B+ Approach:

In the B+ approach, you still prioritize accuracy and professionalism in the financial report. However, you set realistic time constraints, focus on the key metrics, and maintain a healthy balance between work and personal life during the process. The report is thorough and reliable, but the approach allows for a more sustainable and fulfilling work routine.

Remember, the B+ approach doesn’t mean compromising on quality; it’s about finding a balance that allows for excellence without sacrificing your well-being or work-life balance.

As I wrap up, remember this – embracing B+ work is not about settling; it’s about choosing progress over perfection. So, set realistic expectations, prioritize self-care, advocate for yourself, and cultivate a supportive team.





The weight of societal expectations and the desire to prove ourselves can lead us down a path of perfectionism that, if we’re being honest, can be downright exhausting.

Remember, the B+ approach doesn’t mean compromising on quality; it’s about finding a balance that allows for excellence without sacrificing your well-being or work-life balance.