It got my attention when Michele Scism sent an email with the subject line: “This time I really screwed up.”
She goes on to say she screws up often and she doesn’t worry about being right all the time. The reason she doesn’t stress about every little screw up is because she is about results – not perfection!
People Like to Help When You Screw Up
Because she does not obsess about perfection and is comfortable with the screw ups naturally occurring in a fast-paced successful business, she knows one thing will always happen after the mistake. People will try to help by pointing out the error. She gets emails and other messages from well-meaning people who want to help by pointing out the mistake.
The cool thing is she leverages this fact with this one…the ones pointing out her mistake do not have the business they want because they are too busy worrying about perfection.
Perfectionism Can Hold You Back
“My coaching business is in the top 5% of all coaching businesses because I’m not worried about it all being right!”
If you are in the top 5% of your industry colleagues and have managed to achieve such levels of success by making sure everything is perfect, I would like to hear from you. Please comment or contact Kate.
Most of us are a mixed bag of perfectionism and flaws. We make mistakes. We recognize them and try to make things right with our clients or in our media. Unfortunately we also tend to feel guilty or worse…we start self-sabotage with negative internal language.
Perfection is a Total Waste of Time!
If Michele’s example isn’t enough, think about all the opportunities you miss each time to struggle with making it all perfect. A lot of people never get anything significant completed because they follow this pattern:
- Struggling to find the perfect time to perform the task
- Struggling with finding the perfect software, venue, image – or whatever
- Doing the thing needed and then…
- Changing it multiple times to get it to perfection
As a writer, I can tell you right now – It’s still not perfect. Successful writers will tell you about all the revisions and edits done prior to publishing their book. If you get an honest answer from them, they will tell you all the rewrites did not save them from mistakes. There are simply some mistakes only found after the book is in print. And normally it is not an editor, proofreader or fellow writer who finds the mistake(s). It is some well-meaning reader who has never published a thing who can find the mistake. What is that about???
Perfectionism Wounds the Soul and Self-Confidence
Now we are getting into the area near and dear to me, Kate.
It is my mission to help people see their lack of perfection as an asset. Clearly Michele has managed to shed any perception of mistakes being about her value. She knows her value. She has made it her life’s mission to help others find their own value and monetize it to live an incredible life.
Imperfection is Often a Gift
I don’t know Michele well enough to share any deep, dark secrets of her wounded past. However, I am certain she has had wounds. I am even pretty confident she would tell us about challenging things in her past, when seen in hindsight, became a gift to her.
My goal is to re-imagine imperfection as our greatest asset. What stories can you share with the community? What challenge, tragedy or accident changed your life in a positive way? While in the midst of imperfect circumstances it is hard to see the blessing. Wonderful things are happening every day and they may be disguised as a challenge. Choose to be imperfect and happy about it.