Striving too hard for perfection sometimes keeps us from doing anything at all.
I’m reminded of the wicked servant in the parable of the talents. The King gave gold to each of his servants. The wise servants went out, worked and traded and earned more. The wicked servant, for fear of messing up, buried his gold in the ground.
Far too often I am like that wicked servant. Instead of following through, I think and dream and stew. I spend so much time trying to perfect a goal or come up with a perfect schedule that there’s not enough time to actually carry it through.
This point was brought home to me recently:
I decided to teach my daughter a Christmas themed-poem. I just needed to find one. Days and weeks passed as I read poem after poem trying to find the perfect one for her. One was too long and another too short. Others carried the wrong message. Finally I settled on a poem, but by this point there wasn’t enough time left before Christmas to teach it to her.
My insistence on finding a perfect poem robbed us of time to actually learn any poem.
Unfortunately, perfectionism doesn’t just create problems learning Christmas poems. Many areas in life can be affected.
- Stressing about having the absolute best curriculum can lead to not wisely utilizing what we do have.
- Over-analysis of purchases wastes precious time that could be used to enjoy it
- Writing and rewriting an e-mail, blog post or letter means it may not get finished on time
Some decisions require hours of prayer, soul-searching and seeking advice. Often however, we need to stop worrying about having everything absolutely perfect and just diligently act. Now.
As Amy (from Blogging with Amy) wrote in a recent post, in blogging and many other areas of life “Good Enough is Good Enough.”
[Speaking of acting, want to join me in my One Habit a Month [12 Habits 2012] Challenge?]