In today's world, you could be forgiven for thinking that you have to create success on day one.
It's natural to want to be the best at something; we are all schooled from an early age to "do better"..to do our best.
But when doing your best becomes confused with being perfect, a person does nothing but set themselves up for self-criticism and sadness. Of course, there are those in the world that strives for perfection, Olympic athletes or those that are masters of their craft.
"And I salute them, I really do But I do not envy them.”
The path of perfection is a crippling journey, and one our current society and popular culture tells us is the "norm". Stories of success, keynote speakers, how I went from "poor to millionaire" minute books, all built to reinforce inadequacy and increase self-doubt, increase the desire and expectation to be perfect.
The irony is on most occasions what you see isn't real, its altered, either in its aesthetic appearance or in it's positioning.
Do we really believe every guru we see on TV or in the pages of a magazine, is having the time of their lives, that there has never been a moment of doubt or a period of failure?
There is somehow an implied expectation to be included in a club you didn't even want to be a member of in the first place.
You see for me; the world has lost its pride in individualism, it is pride in being different, in making an error and owning up to it, learning from it, and acquiring humility in the process. Stepping out of the line, walking the wrong direction, questioning the conversation. That to me is the most exciting self-development of all.
But what is really going on here is a lack of confidence. Fear of being the one to say no, admit we cocked up, made a mistake, didn't get it right..
For people stuck in this trap, life can be incredibly difficult. They have goals that they want to achieve.
Or at least they think they have goals. My question would be "are those goals your own"?
Often with when I am coaching a client, when that client has a chance to talk to someone, someone who is there for them, without judgement or expectation, the result is freedom. Having someone in your corner, to help you figure out what your "truth" is, what your desires are and how to feel proud of expressing them is a liberating experience.
Get that, and well, then life becomes less complicated. Less pressured. Less demanding. Less Stressful and you start to live your life being proud of who you are.
To those who have created perfection, I take my hat off to you, I really do. But do I want to be you, forgive me but no. No, I don't. The thought for me that I have reached that point. That there is no more to learn, no more to understand, would be the most depressing thought of all.
The excitement of the challenge, of learning something new. The frustration of "not getting it" only to dig in deeper to challenge, and then to accomplish, that's the part that keeps my brain ticking, blood flowing and excitement building. I don't care if it's the fact I have mastered the art of building an Ikea wardrobe that actually resembles the final photo, or creating a new training course that is going to help a bucket load of learners to become better at what they do, it doesn't matter what it is, it's progress.
That's why I know; I would rather be striving for progress any day than waiting for perfection.