I have a confession, and it is hard for me to admit it… I am not a perfectionist. On the contrary, I’m sloppy, I never think till the end and I always have to come back and correct things I’ve done.
For years that made me insecure and doubt my own achievements. I used to compare myself to those around me that were perfectionist, and were creating amazing results, which I could not dream of achieving.
However, after living for 26 years now, with a “recovering perfectionist” I’ve learned some lessons on the way.
If you suffer from this disease called perfectionism let me remind you. All perfectionists have one thing in common. You all achieve… NOTHING.
You are so obsessed with getting everything PERFECT that you forget that the goal is to COMPLETE things and not just start with them, or have the PERFECT research, or have the PERFECT style and dialogue, wording, symbols and you name it… whatever you think that would make your writing PERFECT
Those of you who suffer from this disease you know very well, down at the bottom of your heart, at the end of the day, you are not achieving as much as you could have, due to this obsession that EVERYTHING needs to be PERFECT.
For those of you who suffer from it – I have two words – GROW UP!! This idea that everything has to be PERFECT is an infantile idea that was planted in your brain when you were very young and thought that you have to do it PERFECT in order to get the love, appreciation or recognition that you wanted.
It’s time to grow up from this notion.
On the other hand, if you are like me, you might have gotten into your head that you are not OK or good enough because you were comparing yourself to someone else.
The problem is that you probably compared yourself to someone who has been doing the same thing for years and you believe that you can achieve the same results as they do even though you only started.
When you have a goal — whether it’s writing a novel or writing a screenplay or a musical for that matter – it’s easy to look at someone who is already doing it and then try to reverse engineer their strategy.
I always say that modeling is the fastest way to grow.
But it’s equally important to remember that the systems, habits, and strategies that successful writers are using today are probably not the same ones they were using when they began their journey.
What is optimal for them right now isn’t necessarily what you need to get started. There is a difference between the two.
Let me clear it up for you.
You are never fully prepared before you take action
Learning from others is great and I do it all the time myself.
But comparing your current situation to someone who is already successful can often make you feel like you lack the required resources to get started at all.
If you look at their optimal setup, it can be really easy to convince yourself that you need to buy new things (like a script writing software, which costs a fortune) or learn new skills (which is endless amount of hours you spend in seminars and courses) or meet new people before you can even take the first step toward your goals.
And usually, that’s not true. Here are some examples.
Writing a script.
When you’re a scriptwriter, it’s so easy to get obsessed with optimal. This is especially true at the start.
I can remember being convinced that I will not succeed without having the RIGHT software that would help me to format my script. After all, everyone tells you that no one would look at your script if the formatting is wrong. I’ve since learned my lesson. I realized that while it is true that you need to know what is the required format, there are countless ways to have free software that would do it for you without spending a fortune on the “Industry Standard” software.
A huge part of any real success is learning something new in the process
Claiming that you need to “learn more” or “get all of your ducks in a row” can often be a crutch that prevents you from moving forward on the stuff that actually matters.You can point out how your mentor is successful because they use XYZ software, but they probably got started without it.
You can complain that your grammar is suffering because you are not a native speaker, but the truth is you probably just need two years of practice
Obsessing about the ultimate software or the ultimate idea or the ultimate phrasing can be a clever way to prevent you from doing hard work.
What I’ve learned in my search for making things PERFECT is that the success I wish for is not about making it PERFECT in the first go. It is the journey you take that makes YOU a master in what you are doing.
I’m all for improvements, it’s that one percent gains that fill me with joy. It’s those tiny habits, which leave me fanatical. It’s that pigheaded level of consistency, which makes my heart flutter.
Don’t let visions of what is optimal prevent you from getting started in the first place.
An imperfect start can always be improved, but obsessing over a perfect plan will never take you anywhere on its own.
Now I’m curious…
What was your journey to make things”perfect”?
Share it with us in the comment box below – your experience and tips for making things better and perfect
If you find this article inspiring, please SHARE it on Facebook, LinkedIn or retweet it, by pushing the button on the left, for the right channel, so more women could benefit from it.