Top 5 Reasons Why Aiming for Perfection Is Not a Good Thing
“I am careful not to confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence I can reach for; perfection is God’s business.
-Michael J. Fox
Giving our best in everything that we do is a pretty good thing. But sacrificing creativity, productivity and happiness because we are aiming for perfection is a different discussion.
When I was young, I think highly of the word “Perfect.” In fact, whenever I do something back then, I always keep in my mind that I need to make it perfect. It is the only way that people will take notice of my project and of me.
The result of trying to perfect everything? Stress, tears, and regret.
That’s when I realized how perfectionism can ruin a certain goal or our health.
So here are the top 5 reasons why always aiming for perfection is not a good thing for us.
It is the culprit for a lot of unfinished tasks.
I’ve noticed that whenever I’m aiming for perfection instead of meeting a deadline, I always end up not finishing the task at hand.
If we try to perfect everything that we do. Then we will never be satisfied with the things that we are creating. Almost all of what we do will never be good enough and instead of having the chance to create more, we will be stuck on that unfinished project. Aiming to perfect a certain task is something that demotivates us from finishing it.
Short advice: Create a deadline and vow to finish your task no matter what. Even if you feel that it’s ugly or even if it’s not good enough for you. Just promise to finish it no matter what. Always remember that “Done is better than perfect.“ Chances are you can tweak it and make it better as time goes by or you can learn from it.
It stops us from exploring.
…which then results to lack of growth. When we try to focus on perfection, we try to eliminate things that we are uncertain about. We are scared to venture because we might not do good and we might mess up. We always aim for a good result so chances are, we will decide to stick to something that we are sure will work.
Short advice: We need to choose between being stagnant or growth. Some people might already be satisfied with being stagnant. But if you want growth, you need to let go of that mindset that you need to perfect everything. There’s nothing good about perfect if you are sacrificing your sanity.
It will make us feel stress and unhappy.
Not being able to finish a task at hand because we want it to be impeccable will cause stress.
Moreover, not being able to start a project that we really want because we want to create a perfect output, will overwhelm us.
These two instances will result to unhappiness because we will never be contented in everything that we do.
Short advice: First of all we need to accept that if we really want to be happy then we need to let go of the idea of perfection. We might end up regretting things we haven’t started or finish. We need to acknowledge that not being able to produce a perfect output will not be the end of the world. It’s also not a crime, so what are we afraid of?
It stops us from being ourselves.
One more thing about perfection is that we try to eliminate the “flaws” that we have in order to be a perfect figure. We try so hard to suppress who we really are just to be perfect in front of others.
Perfection isn’t authentic. It will repress us in discovering and showing our true colors and encourage us to embrace mediocrity.
Short advice: Accept the fact that perfection is not something that we should aim for. Instead of aiming for it, why not aim for growth and discovery? We should not risk our talents, our ideas and ourselves just because we don’t want to hear any negative comment from others.
It will affect how we see and treat others.
How we judged others is how we judged ourselves. If we are aiming for perfection then that means that we are also expecting others to do everything perfectly.
We might end up judging them when they commit mistakes, we will unconsciously demand for a high level of output and if they don’t meet our expectations, then we will be disappointed and it can affect how we treat these people.
Sacrificing kindness for perfection is not very enticing.
Short advice: It will start within us. So we need to change our mindset first before we can change how we perceive other people. Embrace the fact that nobody is perfect, there’s no one exempted to that rule. Accept that we are all susceptible of making mistakes. When we embrace that truth, we will find it easier to loosen up.
The idea of perfection puts a lot of pressure in us that it affects the way we live. Our mind and our dreams suffer because of aiming too much about something that is not attainable. Even the most successful people that I know, make mistakes. Instead of claiming that they are perfect, they focus more on valuing patience, mistakes, and growth.
Let go of the idea that we need to be perfect in order to be happy in life. It’s exactly the opposite. Let’s just do our best in the given time, enjoy the process of creating the project or any kind of output and stick to it until the very end.
There’s only two things that might happen, either we are going to win or we are going to learn.