Perfect Does Not Exist in Reality ~ Part 2

Most people erroneously think that perfection will allow them to achieve their goals. I call perfectionism ‘the curse of the above average.’ At lower levels of learning, striving for perfection can provide some benefits, but once you reach a reasonable level of competence, it begins to reduce rather than enhance your performance.

The truth is that what powers perfectionism is not a desire to be the best at what we do. That is simply what we tell ourselves in an effort to delude ourselves into believing it to be true. The reality is that perfectionism is based on and powered by our insecurities and an underlying belief that we are in fact NOT good enough.

Here are some common examples of this in action:

I meet someone who wants to be a college or professional athlete and I tell them I can get them a tryout next week with the school or team of their dreams. The most common response I get from perfectionists is something along the lines of, that’s too soon, or can we push it back a ways, etc. As if pushing it back will allow them to perfect their craft. Not only does this tell me they are not ready, it shows me that they likely never will be because their mindset is not that of an achiever.

I happen to live in an area where seemingly everyone has written a movie script. People love to tell you about their great script, right up until you tell them you have a friend who is a producer or director you can show it to. Once this happens it suddenly goes from being the best script ever written to being one that is not ready to be shared yet. Alternatively, the perfectionist will sometimes say that that would be great and then never follow through on sending it.

The bottom line is most perfectionistic people are getting the attention they crave from talking about writing a script or being a college or pro athlete, and they do not truly believe they have what it takes to be successful. It’s much easier for them to live in a fantasy world where they cannot fail, than to take a risk and possibly succeed.

The transformative players, writers, musicians, CEO’s and artists know they are going to make mistakes and that they will learn from them. They don’t waste their time trying to perfect things before sharing them, as they understand that the more they share things, the likelier they are to achieve their goals and live their mission. Greatness comes from doing (the process) not from perfecting.


You can follow Sam on Twitter @SuperTaoInc


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