Common Mistakes: Trying to be Perfect


Nature Photo

Have no fear of perfection–you’ll never reach it.”
–Salvador Dali

Someone asked me once what I would do if I didn’t have to make it “perfect.” My answer: A GREAT DEAL MORE THAN I AM DOING NOW.

Striving to be perfect, for me, is a deadly double-edged sword. Anytime I catch myself doubting if I can do something, what I am actually doubting is if I can do it perfectly. I have to constantly remind myself the dangers of being a perfectionist–to be a perfectionist is to never be satisfied.

Once I started accepting that anything worth doing is worth doing badly, my options widened. Trying to always be a perfectionist is pursuing the worst in us–the part that tells us nothing is ever good enough. I keep learning that artistry is never perfect, it’s a practice that encourages me to keep moving forward.

Once I started practicing “doing my very best” and let go of “trying to be perfect” my business and options multiplied. Every time I get a client who informs me she wants a perfect event, I remind her that perfection is unattainable since I’m not God, but that I’ll always try my best.

What else would you do if you did not need to be “perfect” at it? (Be an actor, rock star, painter…?)