It never ceases to amaze me this expectation of perfection. Straight As, the perfect body, the perfect pitch, or resume, or style, or _____________. Fill in the blank and someone, somewhere expects us to deliver to the point of perfection.
It also never ceases to amaze me that we never deliver. Sure, there are some things we can do really well. There are people out there (maybe even you) who can bake an excellent cake or pull together one of those amazing stylish outfits from things rummaged up at the local Goodwill. Maybe you can even put together that incredible pitch that lands the promotion or the account or the book deal. But is it ever “perfect”?
And honestly, why should we ever want to be perfect? Once we’ve accomplished that, there is nowhere else to go. Perfect is the last stop on the road. As every good traveler knows, it’s not the destination that matters; it’s the journey of getting there.
Thinking along the lines of the journey, how about trying something new? Something…not so perfect. Trust me on this…
· Celebrate your failures. You’re going to have them along the way, why not enjoy them a little bit? Didn’t get that promotion? Go see a movie. Got rejected by a publisher? Throw a dinner party.
· Try again. It’s the whole “if you don’t succeed, try, try again” kind of thinking. So you didn’t make it this time, what about next time? Polish your resume, edit your book again, and practice your speech.
· Learn something new. Maybe there was something you missed or a trick you didn’t know about. Take some time to study the art you were trying to…um…perfect.
· Talk to yourself. There are a million things you do well! If you can’t remember them, try standing in front of a full-length mirror and reminding yourself of these things. If negative self-talk goes a long way, then positive self-talk will go even further.
· Don’t give up on yourself or your dream. In the end, it may not look like you originally envisioned it, but it’ll still be beautiful. Just keep going.
No one is perfect. Not me, not you, and not that person over there who has achieved her goal. The difference between the gold medalist and the rest of us is that she didn’t quit. So, if you can’t be perfect go for something else. Try perseverance. It starts with a “P” too.