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Chronicles from a Caribbean Cubicle

3/03/2008

Perfectionists Are Losers

I just read a most inspiring and wonderful post from a fellow blogger -- Pamela Slim -- from the blog "Escape from Cubicle Nation".

It's entitled "Perfectionists are Losers" and it builds on the idea that anyone who starts a project with the goal of getting things perfectly right is planting the seeds of their own destruction from the very outset.

I can relate... the past few months have seen me venturing into the world of e-commerce, testing out numerous landing pages, publishing my first e-book, putting out my first podcast, using Facebook for marketing purposes... plus more.

I keep telling my wife that "I don't know what I'm doing...!" I am happily making things up as I go along, which is only saying it a little better than the way she puts it... "pulling things out of my butt". The truth is that sometimes I have felt that way, and I wonder at different times whether or not I am wasting my time,. I imagine that someplace out there people are laughing their asses off at the nonsense I am doing!

(If you are laughing your ass off right now, STOP IT -- this is a serious post.... ;-) )

All this proves Pamela's point, fortunately. She says, very wisely:
What highly productive and successful people do is spend as little time as possible at the edge of opportunities, agonizing whether or not to move forward.
Hey, this puts my typos, ugly designs, hellish grammar, non-radio voice, too-many-ads -- well, all of it -- in perspective!

She quotes a book -- "Bird by Bird" - when speaking about writing....

"For me and most of the other writers I know, writing is not rapturous. In fact, the only way I can get anything written at all is to write really, really sh*tty first drafts.

The first draft is the child's draft, where you let it all pour out and let it romp all over the place, knowing that no one is going to see it and that you can shape it later. You just let this childlike part of you channel whatever voices and visions come through and onto the page. If one of the characters wants to say "Well, so what, Mr. Poopy Pants?," you let her. No one is going to see it. If the kid wants to get into really sentimental, weepy emotional territory, you let him. Just get it all down on paper, because there may be something great in those crazy six pages that you would never have gotten to by more rational, grown-up means. There may be something in the very last line of the very last paragraph on page six that you just love, that is so beautiful or wild that you now know what you are supposed to be writing about, more or less, or in what direction you might go- but there was no way to get to this without first getting through the first five and a half pages."
This is SUCH good news!

She also says that who you hang out with IS important:

Tip #3: Hang out in the right barbershop

A friend of mine said "If you hang out in a barbershop, sooner or later, you are going to get a haircut."
This is SO well said... now I know why I like the company of certain types of people, just because...

She is SO inspiring!!!

You can read the entire article here.

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