Permission To Suck

I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist, an all-or-nothing kind of woman.  If I can’t do it right & do it all at once, then I don’t do it at all.

However, one of the many, many, many, many things I am learning these days is that sometimes getting it done is better than getting it perfect. 

Perfectionism can be paralyzing. 

In order to master something, you have to actually start it first & starting it involves being bad at it for a while & I have a tendency to not be okay with that.

While I am incredibly grateful to be doing something I love that also allows me to be there for my kids, I am essentially trying to become a photographer, web designer, photo editor, graphic design artist, marketing manager, branding specialist, accountant, spreadsheet guru & social media maven, all at the same time.  My mind feels like someone emptied a gumball machine onto a trampoline. Every. Single. Day.

Meanwhile, I only have half of the pages built for my website, hundreds of items still need categorized, measured, photographed, priced & posted & I literally cringe when I think about the pictures currently online in my store especially after seeing all of the drool-worthy, scroll-stopping, perfectly staged photos coming through my facebook feed every day. 

And so…. I have come to the realization that I need to give myself permission to suck.

David Kadavy, host of the podcast 'Love Your Work', points out that in order to be good at anything, you have to suck first or you’ll never improve.  Unfortunately, most people just give up & quit once they realize that they suck.  But, he reminds us, it’s ok to suck.  It’s necessary to suck.  There’s nothing wrong with being bad at something, especially if it’s part of the process you use to learn, grow & get better. 

While I would love to just spend my days painting & making things pretty, there are so many other aspects of this business I have to figure out & I’m realizing that I need to give myself permission to be bad at the things that I don’t know how to do yet.

Sometimes I think that what screws us up the most in life is the picture in our heads of how we think it should be.  So I’ve decided to let go of that picture & instead, embrace the fact that I am never going to get my ducks in a row.  I mean, let’s be honest, I don’t even have ducks & I definitely don’t have a row.  It’s more like I have squirrels.  And they’re at a rave.

Now don’t get me wrong, I won’t stop trying to reach perfection, I’m too stubborn for that.  But I’m okay with it never actually happening because God is showing me that it is possible to be both a work of art and a work in progress all at the same time.

Author Brene Brown writes that, “authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be & embracing who we are”.

Less perfection.  More authenticity.

Because life doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.

My website isn’t what I want it to be but then again, neither am I.  Luckily, God isn’t finished with me yet & ditto for my site.  I guess we both have a lot of work to do.

Not A Blog

I am not a mommy blogger.  This is not a blog. 

True, a couple people may have suggested that I start a blog, but I honestly have no idea what I would even write about & on the off chance I did manage to come up with something, I can’t imagine it being fascinating enough for someone to actually want to read it. 

However, over the years I have learned that it is never a good idea to say, “I won’t”. 

Years ago, I went to a wedding in Detroit & as we were driving on the freeway (which to me felt more like the Indy 500), I vividly remember saying out loud, “I will never live in Michigan.” 

Big mistake.  HUGE

My first job after college was in Jackson, Michigan, less than an hour from Detroit & I lived there for almost 15 years.  There are more examples like this one, though thankfully only a few since it didn’t take me all that long to figure out that when I open my big mouth & say things like “I will never __________”, I’m almost positive that when God hears me, He chuckles to himself & says, “Oh really?  We’ll just see about that.” 

Now I’ll admit, it’s a pretty effective way to remind me that His ways are higher than mine & honestly, I wouldn’t ever want to miss out something amazing just because I was arrogant enough to think my plan was the best one.  Sometimes I think all God really wants is to know that we’re willing to do whatever He asks of us, so these days I try to be a little more careful & say things like “I would really prefer not to but I’m good with whatever.” 

So just to clarify…. this is not a blog.  This is merely a little note from me to God pointing out that rather than deleting the blog portion of the template I used to build my website, I am instead choosing to leave it here as very public evidence of my willingness to do whatever He thinks is best (while simultaneously and a lot less publicly praying that a blog is not going to be part of that plan). 

So, I hope you’re reading this, God.  This is me, making it clear that I’m willing to do whatever & hoping this is one of those times when willingness is all you're really after.  Fingers crossed!