Today I want to talk a bit about perfection. I have noticed it cropping up in me recently - I am pretty sure that it is cropping up in a lot of people too!
Too often, we have a need for everything to be perfect before we can actually start. When you start waiting for perfection, you’ll never go anywhere. It’s impossible to achieve perfection!
PURSUANCE OF PERFECTION CAN HALT OUR PROGRESS
I noticed that the last few weeks we stayed in Lebanon, I stopped doing so many Facebook Lives. Sometimes it was for logistical reasons like we did not have 4G so I couldn’t get online... but more often I told myself that the backdrop was not perfect; or there was traffic noise; or I did not feel I had much to say.
In reality, I was feeling the need to be perfect. I was trying to create a “perfect" experience for my audience. But people do not want you to be perfect: they want real. They want anything at all vs nothing! If you have something - anything - of value to say, then that is enough. They are going to get the message they need from you.
You don't need to produce this epic, Cirque du Soleil type of spectacle. It could just be 5 minutes, quickly jumping on and saying hi. Often just the connection with you is enough.
How does this relate to you?
I want you to think about it now - especially if you do not know exactly where are you now in the journey of your business.
Maybe you’ve just discovered the online business space. You have just discovered about the concept of online businesses and you’re wondering if this can work for you.
Or maybe you have a business idea already, and you're struggling to take action to get going.
Maybe you have the idea: you are building a website, you are taking action.
At any point in this business journey, we can start getting stuck in wanting to be perfect.
This can show up as not being sure that your business ideas are going to work. Not feeling “sure”. Not having a “guarantee" that it is going to make you money.
If it is not costing you tons of money to do it, then why do you need to have a guarantee? You get the guarantee when you learn the lesson through tweaking and pivoting the business idea until it's profitable. Any business idea could be profitable if you pivot it to where there is market demand, and give that market the right message. That's the basics - as long as your product is right and the message is right, the rest will fall into place.
FOCUS ON THE THINGS THAT WILL MOVE YOUR BUSINESS FORWARD
Once you have the idea and you're actually building your website - that’s where many people get so stuck. They think the website needs to be perfect, the branding needs to be perfect, the logo needs to be perfect.
None of that is important.
What’s important is what I said above: you need to ask your market, see what they want, build it for them and tell them about it in the right way.
In the beginning, you do not need to have a logo. I did not have a logo for the first two years of my business. I built my business 6-figures a year before I even thought about a logo. The only reason that I’m using a half-decent logo now is that my husband insisted that we get one, and he made it himself!
But all of your branding and website and everything is just noise. It can become an energy-sucking vortex that we can get totally absorbed in, but which doesn't move us forward.
PROCRASTINATING WILL NOT MOVE YOUR BUSINESS FORWARD
Sometimes, we procrastinate. It is more fun to sit and twiddle about and design a logo than it is to do the things you need to do. Often, what we really need to do could be a bit dry and boring, like choosing a website provider.
It could be fear - you’re using busy-work as something to occupy yourself. It’s easy to feel feel productive by staying busy, without doing the things that you need to do to move your business forward.
Usually, what you really need to do is to get out there and get visible. Post on social media or make a sales call. This is what's actually going to move your business forward.
If you are in the business idea stage, maybe you have to talk to your future target clients, maybe you got to buy a course or programme to get you to the next level. There's always something that you could be doing and it tends to be the thing that we fear the most.
It’s a great rule of thumb for your business: usually, the thing that I don’t feel like doing - the thing that scares me - is the thing that I have to do to move forward.
THE IDEA OF WAITING TO BE PERFECT CAN REALLY HOLD YOU BACK
Nobody can be perfect, it's totally unattainable.
If you feel that you are not going to be ready to start your business until your whole life is perfect; well, it’s never going to be perfect. You're never going to feel that you're ready. There's always going to be something going on to distract you.
I’ve had a really challenging year in terms of things going wrong in my personal life. We’ve had illnesses. We’ve had personal problems. We were living in a country that takes a lot of energy just to keep basic necessities going, and that all was very, very distracting. For example, I would be trying to do a Facebook Live and the electricity would cut, because it cuts twice a day.
But I kept going and I kept taking action. You have to keep pushing and that's really the message that I want you to get to you today. Things do not have to be perfect you just need to keep taking action.
Take baby, baby steps, wherever you are in your business journey. Whatever the next steps are that you have to take, you have to make sure that you actually take them! Don’t let yourself get either stuck in waiting to be perfect, waiting for your life to be perfect.
It is a bit like you wait until you get a promotion...or you wait until your house renovations are done...or you wait until your kids start school… you wait and wait and wait...
If you are always waiting for something, then likely this is a procrastination method for you. It’s a way for you not to take action.
A BUSINESS CAN NOT BUILD ITSELF
A business does not build itself. You can never just sit there and wait and somehow it is going to fall into place.
You have to take action. You have to start taking consistent small actions. These actions don’t have to be perfect; they just need to be actions in the right direction.
So I want you to think today about where in your life you are waiting for perfection.
Where are you either procrastinating or stuck?
Where are you keeping yourself busy and doing things that are irrelevant to your progress?
For example, if you are in the business idea stage, or if you are right at the beginning of your business journey, you might be reading 1001 blog posts about how to start a business without actually doing something to start a business.
I was the worst culprit for this! I would go to the office back when I had my job still, and I would read LinkedIn articles literally from top to bottom of the newsfeed - every single article in my lunch break. I would literally get to the point when I refreshed the newsfeed in LinkedIn, there would not be any more articles to read. That is how many articles I would have read! And for what? I didn’t use any of the information I read. I didn't start anything.
START TAKING ACTION
Get the information you need and then take action on it. That is the most important thing. Do not just read and read and read.
Reading blogs is the perfect busy work, it makes you feel productive. It makes you feel you have learned something. If you don’t apply that knowledge, it’s worthless.
Instead, get out there! Take action, even if it's imperfect.
As they say at Facebook: “Done is better than perfect.”
Take the action - it can be imperfect. You are allowed to make mistakes. Unless you do something crazy like you are betting your home on your business (which I do not recommend!), the downsides to taking imperfect action and getting it wrong are probably minimal. Maybe you lose an hour of your time. Maybe you lose twenty bucks testing a Facebook ad that does not work. In the great scheme of things, who cares?
Take the imperfect action, make small mistakes.
Get going - make things happen. It is through taking action that you actually learn the answers. It is through taking action that things fall into place.
So what can you do to actually take action and move forward and stop needing to be perfect? Leave a comment here, tell me what you commit to doing - the action you need to take that’s scares you.
YOUR NEXT STEP
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