The Importance Of Progress Over Perfection

A perfect game pitched means there are no hits or runners allowed on base by a pitcher for at least nine innings.

In the Olympics, a perfect dive is judged based on the form and little splash.

To be a Budweiser Clydesdale horse, the animal has to be 72 inches tall when mature, between 1,800 and 2,300 pounds, have a bay coat, four white legs, and a black mane and tail. So in horse lingo, perfect.

But most of you reading right now don’t have the time to worry about winning the Cy Young Award or pulling a beer wagon on all fours this year.

In this tumbleweed on a windy day speed of life we live in, it’s easy to strive for a superlative schedule. But most successful ventures don’t aim for perfection. Not many in a well-off marriage expect their relationship to be perfect. The most successful businesses put out hypothetical (and potentially realistic) fires every day. You see it’s not flawlessness that we need to seek but rather simple progress.

Think: Are you getting better as a person? As a family? As a business?

We all are going to have flaws. We are all going to make mistakes. In fact, if you aren’t making mistakes, you probably aren’t challenging yourself enough. The point is, it’s okay to have a couple of bogeys on your score card as long as you’re taking note of why they happened.

We are not designed to be perfect. Some of us are closer to it than others, but from birth, we are set up to make mistakes. To fall off the bike, to let down our spouse, to fill out that report wrong, etc. Whatever it is, embrace your inaccuracies and learn from them.

In this day and age, we have so many social pressures to show off how impeccable we are at all times. We choose the best photo to hide the blemishes in our life. Then we choose the best photo filters to hide the blemishes on our skin. There’s a constant stress to appear like we have everything together when in reality, in those quiet moments, we all have our issues that we don’t want the general public to see.
Take the time to do an inventory of those issues. Don’t let them define you, but recognize them and let yourself be okay with not being flawless. When you go into each day with the mindset that you don’t have to be perfect, it gives you a margin for happiness. You’ll breath easier keeping in mind that mistakes are normal.

When we are toddlers, and we are upset, a nap fixes everything. After that nap, we have a blank page to work with. As adults, we can do the same thing at the end of a day. Mentally start over with a new day. Maybe the same problems are present, but we can approach them with a new-found, well-rested attitude.If you fault in your actions, take a lesson from it. Take notes, and every mistake can be considered an infamous “opportunity for growth, ” and you can walk away from it new and improved.

On a daily basis, don’t worry about pitching the perfect game or pulling off the perfect dive. Life is about the home runs and cannonballs anyways.

Remember: progress, not perfection.

Joe Mosley is an avid outdoorsman and hobbyist writer living in Nashville. He believes a hot cup of coffee with a good conversation should be a part of everyone’s life. He works as a road manager for a country artist spreading positivity coast to coast via a tour bus throughout the year.

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