Today I learned that perfection is a good thing to strive for, but not if stops you from reaching your goals or making a difference in the world, or from touching just one other person’s life.
Sometimes good enough is just that: good enough.
My Aha! Moment
I took some time today to look over some projects that I had been working on over the years. Yes, I said “projects” (plural). And yes, I said “years.”
I was surprised at how many potentially great ideas and goals that I had started working on, were still sitting out there withering on a vine. For some reason I did not complete them or release them simply because they were not “perfect” yet.
There were plans to be of service, professional goals, personal goals, etc. My intentions were good but I guess my ego and my desire (guided by that ego and perhaps also fear of criticism) to not put things out into the world until they were “perfect” has stifled my sharing those things and ideas with others.
What a shame.
And maybe it has also short changed my making an impact where I could be of help to others.
An eye opener for me
I’ve been truly blessed in my life with many amazing opportunities, lots of wonderful people and mentors, as well as some incredible successes that were unexpected along the way. But my desire has always been to make a positive impact on the world and those around me in any and every way I can.
I think that I have reached that goal in some ways, but lately I’ve been thinking that perhaps there is more, much more, that I can do. That’s what got me looking over some of those things I started in the past but never finished.
I was surprised at what I found:
Books written that were never published . . .
Business ideas that were abandoned . . .
Ideas for success that were never shared . . .
Disappointing life lessons that were never addressed . . .
Important goals that were just inches away from being successes . . .
Wow, what an eye-opener!
Why is this so?
That is the question I kept asking myself while I was finding all these things, many that I had simply forgotten about.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my fair share of successes and I am truly grateful for each and every one. But I realized these things, these ideas, these gifts that I have been keeping to myself, could potentially benefit others in some small way.
I finally realized that my life is not all about me, but about those who could potentially benefit from what I may have to share. So I asked myself, “Am I just being selfish?”
I didn’t like the answer I heard back.
We are not alone in this world
Each of us, although individuals, are part of our communities as well. I do not mean “community’ in a literal sense. Our communities can consist of our family, friends, or neighbors. But it can also mean bigger things, or reach greater distances than we can imagine.
Like a pebble in a pond, our actions have a ripple effect in the world. But so do our inactions. Who could have benefitted from that ripple, I wonder?
I came to this conclusion: To not share our gifts can truly be a shame.
Am I being selfish?
I tend to be a pretty humble guy, but even so, I wonder if am I being selfish by not sharing my “imperfect” or “incomplete” ideas or thoughts.
What if just one person can benefit from them? What if they make just one person smile, maybe even benefit someone I don’t even know? Who am I to deny that joy to my fellow man?
Isn’t putting my egotistical desire to be seen as perfect, or to have my ideas thought of as perfect, worth putting aside for that greater good?
I think it is.
My new approach
I’m going to try something new. I’m going to allow good enough to be just that: good enough.
I’m going to focus on spreading ideas and gifts, as quickly as I can. I’m putting aside for now, being driven by results, or feeling like things have to be perfect before releasing them and sharing them with my communities.
And this post is my first attempt at that that, so please excuse any mistakes!
I’m going to relinquish my ego’s desire to only put out things that I feel are “perfect” so I can be more productive and impactful going forward.
The lesson . . .
Today I learned that perfection is good, but it is not everything. “Everything” is instead using your gifts to bring positive change, joy, love and happiness to others, in any way possible, and as quickly as possible.
I can live with that!