When is ‘good enough’ good enough?

So this is my second blog post. Ever. The world of internet domains, hosting and websites is virgin territory to me. The morning I decided to take action on creating this website, I was faced with the seemingly simple task of selecting a pre-designed wordpress theme. Seemingly simple, she says. It took 2 entire mornings, a tension headache and stomach anxieties before the desired theme was chosen. There I was, clicking through most themes, sometimes two, three times, being hopelessly indecisive about which lucky theme would be the chosen one. The perfect one. The more I clicked, the more stressed out of my brain I became. I finally heard Mark’s voice in my head saying, “Just make it good enough. It doesn’t have to be perfect, just good enough.” I braced myself and picked a theme.

Easier said than done Mark, especially when coming from a background of design and architecture, where ‘good enough’ can result in an imperfectly finished kitchen or bathroom. An eyesore to be forever experienced in the daily lives of the unfortunate occupants. But upon reflection of my own experiences, ‘good enough’ can be entirely relevant in architecture if applied appropriately. While I wouldn’t design a house to be ‘good enough’, I definitely could have applied this philosophy on those late nights office, obsessively fixing up drawings because there was a difference of a fraction of a millimetre missing between lines. A common drafting error that is impossible to be picked up by anyone else. Or refusing to accept help because I was afraid to relinquish control of the drawings. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for accuracy and good drawing technique. But I look back now to my past days of obsessive compulsion and think how much easier / more pleasant those months could have been. I could have had a life!

So just when is ‘good enough’, good enough? In the case of my wordpress site, ‘good enough’ is definitely good enough. I realised that there is always room to tweak, to refine, to improve. The point is that ‘good enough’ takes you into the state of action; if we perpetually waited for ‘perfect’, then we may just miss an opportunity that might be waiting around the corner, or worse yet, rest back on the idea of ‘perfect’ as a subconscious excuse for never taking action (“it’s not quite ready yet…”). Build the plane while you’re flying. Seems like an illogical saying if you were to apply it to the real world, but the point is that for most of us, we are already flying whether or not we know it. So build that plane! Don’t wait for things to be ‘perfect’, or ‘ready’, or ‘the right time’. It’s even likely that the course may change along the way. But as long as we are taking action, we avoid being rooted in the same spot. And if course does change, then the momentum of imperfect action will likely propel us to keep moving. But it is only with momentum that we start to figure out what it is we want to do, where we want to be, even if it begins with a small idea.

I was given an amazing opportunity to teach yoga at a new health clinic this week, but was required to teach a trial class to the owners before they could decide. A part of me wanted to believe that I didn’t have enough experience, that I wasn’t ready. A bigger part of me decided to suck it up and flip my nervous energy into excitement. Guess what? I nailed it. My new phrases: Imperfect action. Effect change. Be bold. Things might not be perfect, but I’m pretty happy with that.


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