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It’s Not Perfect

I think that like many people, one of the reasons I was drawn to teaching and coaching was to learn more about how to do my own work and find ways to go through or around or over my own stumbling blocks.

One of my biggest stumbling blocks is perfectionism. That's true for so many creatives! What is it with our brains?! That's a question for a longer post, though.

Lately, to help me conquer my perfectionist tendencies, I'm working with the ideas in Jon Acuff's book and course Soundtracks. This week I have been practicing a new soundtrack for when I get frustrated because something is imperfect and not been working out. I've especially been using it as I'm trying to put together a version of that master to-do list idea I wrote about the other day. I've tried a couple of ideas that just aren't working for me, but instead of giving up on the idea, putting it aside for later and probably never getting back to it, I've been saying, "This one isn't quite working out for me. What else can I try?" And it's been pretty awesome.

My brain loves questions, so as I work more with these soundtrack ideas I'm seeing more and more that putting in questions with my statements is a really good way to go for me. My brain instantly starts coming up with answers when it gets a question, and that seems to be helping me not get stuck when things aren't working out. It's just a matter of finding the questions that really get to the heart of what's holding me back.

How do you keep yourself from getting stuck or quitting when things aren't going as you'd hoped? Do you like questions? Or does something else do a better job of getting you rolling again?


8 thoughts on “It’s Not Perfect

  1. Donna

    I am too a perfectionist, it takes me so long to do things as they have to be right, or not even start because I know I won't be able to do it right!
    I like the idea of the soundtracks course, both myself and my hubby and now we are realising our daughter are massive overthinkers, that just leaves the boy and I fear he is too! What do I do about it? I do the job, get frustrated, and walk away with a year in my eye. If the jobs too big I probably don't even start as I will tell myself I won't be able to achieve.

    1. Kim

      Small steps. And changing the self-talk is huge. I've done some of it in the past, but I really like the way the Soundtracks stuff shows how to flip our inner dialogue. And remember--done is better than perfect!

  2. michele

    i wish i had advice for you. the motto for my life should be "don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good," but in truth? i fail to follow through with anything because if i can't do it right, i don't want to waste time on it. i think people like us need to just relax and DO ... the doing is the important part, because perfection is unattainable anyway. hugs.

    1. Kim

      Doing is definitely the important part! That and remembering that so much of the time there actually is no right way. Plus, you can fix things later, but not if you don't do anything to fix!

  3. Lisa

    I feel you on the perfectionism. I get overwhelmed by it when I'm trying to do or make something for someone else. I don't want them to hate it. I don't want them to find flaws. And if I "fail", I end up apologizing profusely. Even when I'm told it's fine and looks or tastes good, I think they are just saying to make me feel better.
    I'm trying to be less like that. To take the win of what I made, that I made it and that it was good flaws and all, and to take the person at their word. It's hard though.

    1. Kim

      It is hard. Keep practicing! Keep making things and doing things. That's our best way through.

  4. Kimi

    I like questions too, and my brain likes to find answers. When I get stuck usually ask myself what needs to be looked at differently, or how can I break it down further so I can keep going etc.

    1. Kim

      How can I look at this differently is one of my favorites! I think our brains are wired for problem solving, so framing things as questions helps them get going on working things out.

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