Topic

Perfectionism

Letting go of perfect expands what we’re capable of.

Good Enough

Perfect doesn't exist, but good enough does.

The trouble is that good enough is different for everything. Striking out only every other time you step up to the plate will make you the best player in the history of baseball. But an airbag that deploys correctly 90% of the time? That's a failure.

The line between good enough and failure is often slim. When we define what the former is, we free ourselves from the the Sisyphean pursuit of perfect.

Wrong Notes

Miles Davis once said, "It's not the note you play that's the wrong note – it's the note you play afterwards that makes it right or wrong."

This is true, of course, for much more than music.

In high school, I once saw our theatre director approach the stage manager after a dress rehearsal. The stage manager was clearly upset, and expressed disappointment that she had only called about half the sound and light cues on time.

"So you're batting .500!" exclaimed the director.

In baseball, getting a hit every other time you step up to the plate would be a miraculous accomplishment (the average is closer to .250).

You're never going to be perfect, and that's OK. The goal is simply to hit the balls that you can and accept that you might miss most of the time.

And when you do miss – whether it's a ball, a note, or something else – just remember it's the next one that counts.

Subscribe

Daily thoughts on living more intentionally and creating work that matters.
Email address
Subscribe