If you’re at all involved in the creativepreneur community, you may have seen a campaign going on this week called The Imperfect Boss. Hosted by Ashley Beaudin, the campaign focuses on pulling back the curtain on what it’s like to be your own boss (and all the messy, crazy, wonderful problems that come with boss-dom). You can read more about it here.
I participated in the challenge this time around by sharing one of my biggest struggles of being in business: I’m a perfectionist, and my perfectionism makes me think I’m not actually good at my job.
Now I know this to be a warped perception I have of myself – that didn’t surprise me. What did surprise me was the outpouring of people with similar struggles and supportive messages of “you’re not alone”.
So I decided to write this post in an attempt to share my own struggles with perfection, but also to help others who suffer from the same perfectionism to (gently) let go and allow their creativity and passions to shine in their work.
Decide to Decide
Be that person in line at the coffeehouse who gets to the front of the line and still doesn’t know what they want, so they hold up the line making a choice. You know that person – you may have been that person at some time or another; but you don’t want to be that person anymore. When you get trapped in making a decision, you take yourself away from making any forward progress.
Decide. Decide to decide. Most times, this involves trusting your gut and your why. The quicker you decide, the quicker you can get to whatever goals you strive to achieve in your business. My tip: incorporate quick decision-making into every aspect of your life – the more you strengthen your decision-making muscles, the easier making bigger decisions will be.
Stick to Your Commitments
Push back on deadlines, meetings, commitments, etc. because you feel that something is “not ready” (read: not perfect). When you push back on commitments, you compromise on yourself and your business and decrease confidence in yourself and your business.
Stick to your commitments. If you set a deadline for yourself, you should stick to it. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot – instead, make it work. By problem-solving, you establish stronger confidence in yourself and your business. My tip: tell other people your deadlines – they’ll hold you accountable.
Know Your Limits
Commit to unrealistic deadlines, clients, or projects. When you accept a project that forces you to compromise on your standards, you will either resent the project or overwork trying to make the deadline – neither of which are good for your business.
Know your limits. If you can’t launch a viable product/service in a provided deadline, negotiate the deadline or do not accept the project. That may sound harsh, but by saying “no” to bad fits, you’re able to make room for more work you want to say “yes” to, and who respect your standards for exactly what they are: a relentless pursuit of a perfect product.
“Good Enough” is the New “Done"
If you read that line up there and cringed a little, know that I did too the first time I heard it from my business coach. It’s challenging to let go of a project before you feel that it’s truly done – in fact, I’ve done it with more than one blog post on this site (not that I’m about to tell you which ones, you sneaky little brown-noser).
In order to move forward on whatever projects are on your plate, you need to make “good enough” your new “done”. Making mistakes is part of being in business, and while certain things (legal agreements) should be clear down to the letter, most processes and pages can be improved with testing and fixing over time. It’s far better to learn from experience than stay in inaction and fear.
So if you’re sitting on something wonderful, it’s time to get up and share. Share your products, your course, your services. Let the work speak for itself. Let it be done.
What’s your biggest business struggle? Let me know in the comments!