Aim For Progress, Not Perfection

Albert Einstein once said: “There is nothing known as perfect. It’s only those imperfections which we choose not to see!!” I believe this applies to every aspect of life and in business. If we should wait for everything to be perfect before we do something, nothing would be done!

The Cambridge Dictionary definition of perfection is “the state of being complete and correct in every way”. The definition of progress is “movement to an improved or more developed state, or to a forward position”. If you want to achieve success in anything in life, which do you think is more important? Perfection or progress?

All my life I have been a person who like to make things happen. When I have a choice, I always choose action over inaction. This means that I do not spend much time debating whether my approach is the 100% optimal one. If I did that, I would still be in the pre-launch phase of my business.

Over the last 7 years I have met a lot of people who have wasted an enormous amount of time trying to make things perfect. They have tried so hard to be perfect that they never got started. They work on their “pitch”, they study all aspects of the compensation plan, they prepare, prepare, and prepare to get started, but never really launch their business in practice.

They are so obsessed with trying to become perfect before they start that they kill their own dreams by not sharing their passion with others and limit their effectiveness by not learning through doing. This puts them in a state of endless procrastination, and they are unwilling (or afraid) to try something new. Before they realise it, they have spent all their time perfecting every little detail to “get ready” or are simply sitting there worrying about all the potential failures they might encounter, without actually moving forward. We often refer to this as a fixed mindset. Some of the very first people I invited into this business are still “working on” finding the perfect time to get started, and the perfectionism is stopping them from achieving their goals.

Over the same 7 years I have also met a lot of people who have had a growth-oriented mindset. They are willing to learn new things and they immediately implement it in their business. They test a pitch or an approach for a period, on a certain number of contacts. They evaluate and they tweak, if necessary. Small steps but constantly making progress, making their best efforts to improve their results. It will never be perfect, but it is a living and improving process, moving towards a bigger and brighter goal.

So, in the 7 last years while some are still preparing, others have changed their life.

The topic of progress vs perfection is extremely interesting, and there are numerous books on it. The book “In Search of Excellence” written by Tom Peters and Robert H. Waterman Jr., is based on a study of 43 of America’s best-run companies. It clearly shows there is no need for letting things stall or delay. Just be persistent, consistent, and always look for ways to move things forward. They saw that the people and companies that tried to perfect things often ended up causing more damage than good. They also saw that 85% was good enough and it appeared to the masses as 100% fantastic!

Why is it that so many people are obsessed with perfection? Is it because we cannot have it? I believe it might have something to do with what we have been taught at school and further on in life. We learn to work hard to get great grades, find a great job, have a perfect body, live in a big house, own a great car, be successful etc. The competition started already when we were kids and for many, it continues until they die. Instead of competing with others, I suggest that you rather compete with yourself from day to day.

If you want to succeed in network marketing (or anything else) aim for daily progress rather than perfection. Progressing every day, week, month, and year is a journey and it is the best way to live life to the fullest, in my opinion. It does not mean you are lowering the bar. It means that you are prioritising moving toward your goal, and you are getting there in many small steps and not in one giant step. Don’t let striving for perfection paralyse your progress, no matter what you are going to start. Progress beats perfection every time.

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