Yesterday I read ‘Perfectionists set extremely high expectations for themselves, and even if they meet 99% of their goals, they’re going to feel like failures. Any small mistake will make them question their own competence’.
I’m definitely what the wonderful Brene Brown calls “a recovering perfectionist and an aspiring “good-enoughist”.
Perfectionism as a concept in itself isn’t a bad goal to have, there is a standard of excellence that is required for your life, but when it becomes such a high standard that anything less makes you turn against yourself it becomes destructive. Over the years I’ve come to realise that perfectionism is pretty much unattainable, and that’s because things evolve, and never more so in the area of design.
Design is a creative messy process that has to allow for ‘mistakes’ for the concept to develop into the refined article. Allowing yourself to make the ‘failure’ benefits the outcome.
When it comes to interior design, I’ve made some whopping mistakes in my career, the vision that I’ve had in my head hasn’t worked out in reality, Its left me questioning my abilities and even my authenticity as a designer - Imposter Syndrome comes to mind!. But guess what, things move on, your ego recovers, and that mistake opens new doors and opportunities for creative ideas that work even better.
Unfortunately, my experience is that perfectionism encourages procrastination, it seems that to avoid the pain of failure or criticism I’ve ended up not even putting my work out there. Trust me, that’s a straightforward LOSE LOSE scenario! All I’ve done is hand the baton to someone else who isn’t wrapped up in their perfectionist world to go and fulfil their dreams.
Believe it or not, 'failure’ is a good thing, it helps you learn and pushes you forward on your journey. Don’t be afraid of criticism, engagement is essential, it provides vital feedback and data. And guess what? most people don’t even see the imperfections you see in yourself, so stop procrastinating, allow yourself to be vulnerable and go for it.
Maybe ‘Good Enough’ is the real goal, it can free you up to be who you are and in turn unveil the perfect in you.
In closing, I’ve learnt that sometimes Plan B works out better than Plan A ever could!
Peace and Love