Forget About Perfection and Focus on Progress

This may be a surprise or maybe not, but perfect is not always positive.  At times, we get hung up on things being perfect and as a result, nothing happens. By the time that something does happen, it could be too late.

You shouldn’t wait until something is perfect or the situation is perfect to act.  Perfection is nothing more than a hindrance on progression.  Continue to wait for protection and you will be waiting forever.

Nike built their empire off the saying “just do it.”  They figured out early on what many fail to realize.  That is to move on even if the situation or the product is not perfect because it’s important to take action.  Launch the shoe, pitch a product, go for that run, whatever it is, “just do it.”

Nike placed it in the minds of their customers to lace up their shoes and head out the door.  They were telling everyone to quit waiting for the perfect conditions.  Don’t wait until you’re motivated, don’t wait until the rain clears, “just do it.”  Get out there and work.

It’s about progress, not perfection

When you want to start something, there is never going to be a perfect time.  The key is to just start.  Start with whatever you have and wherever you are at.  But it is imperative that you start.

What happens when you start?

Progress is what happens.  As you get going, you begin to figure out what works and what doesn’t work.  You fix what you can and keep moving forward.  That is progress.  You’re not waiting for perfection but you are chasing it.  This is where your focus should be.

It’s about progress, not perfection.  Set the goal high and strive for perfection.  There is nothing wrong with trying to make something perfect unless you let it hold up progress.  Don’t wait because it’s not the perfect time or the product isn’t perfect.  That is nothing more than an excuse.  Take action and improve as you go.

The benefits of progress

Progress is happiness

The great Tony Robbins once said that “the key to happiness is progress.”  Progress is a reward for your work.  When you feel it and when you see it, you get a feeling of fulfillment.  You get that feeling because you put in work for something, take the action necessary and you are rewarded for it.  Much in the same way we feel when we get paid for our work.

Progress is motivation

Once you feel progress you want more.  You want more so you start taking more action and start working harder.  It motivates you to get better because you realize that all that time and effort that you’re putting in pays off.

Progress is feedback

Progress is also feedback for the action that you have taken.  it lets you know where you stand.  In the gym, if you’re stuck squating 315 for a few months, then you know there is something that isn’t right in your training plan because your progress has plateaued.  Something has to change.  More reps, heavier weight, more rest, something needs to happen.

Bottom line

Whether its in your work, in the gym, or in a relationship, progress in anything just feels great.  Waiting around for perfection is a recipe for disaster.  Start immediately and strive for perfection, but don’t be held up by it.

Enjoy the progress that you make because any progress is worth acknowledging and celebrating.  No matter how small, progress will always feel good.  Always remember that it’s about progress not perfection.

—Cruz

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