Hands up in you’re a perfectionist.
I see ya. Yup, you, too. And over there.
You know, there are those who might be surprised to see my hand waving in the air like I just don’t care. I mean, I do care. A lot.
I’m a perfectionist. Of course I care. A lot.
See, I’m a perfectionist in the way that, if I can’t do something absolutely amazingly and wonderfully, and PERFECTLY, I just don’t want to do it at all. Maybe that’s why I’m not the world’s best housekeeper…hm.
My perfectionism serves me well in my writing. It pushes me to be better, to offer my very best, to keep improving.
However, my perfectionism hinders me in a lot of other ways.
There have been times when I haven’t invited friends over because I didn’t think I’d ever get my house perfectly clean. I used to beat myself up over performances when I didn’t hit every single note perfectly. I’ve avoided trying new things because it took the risk of showing that I’m not perfectly good at everything.
It’s often not enough for me to try to be perfect. I usually want other people to think I’m perfect, too.
The problem? I’m totally not perfect.
The problem? I am a mere mortal with limitations.
Sometimes, in some things, I need to be content with Good Enough.
Hear me, please, not in a dismissive, slack off way. But in a “I did my best and can give no more of myself” kind of way.
When a friend comes over and sees that I haven’t gotten that cobweb in the corner, it’s okay. I vacuumed and scooped the poop out of the litter box. Good enough.
When I’ve played the keyboard at church and did my very best to hit the right keys even though my nervous fingers bumped the wrong ones a few times, I still put my heart into serving others and worshipping God. Good enough.
When I serve dinner on paper plates every night for a full week, but those dinners had all the important elements (including a veggie). Good enough.
When I falter under the temptation of the chocolate chips in the cupboard, but I also had an extra handful of spinach at lunch (without ranch). Good enough.
When I don’t know what to say to comfort a friend, but am wise enough to know that a hug speaks plenty. Good enough.
When I’m doing what I can with what I’ve got and trying my very best to hear what God has to say (even though sometimes His voice is so soft I have to strain to listen). Good. Enough.
It’s grace that I give myself. To do what I’m able to and let go of what is beyond me. To put my time and energy into the tasks that God has enabled me to do and to allow myself to sit back and imagine Him looking at my efforts.
And I imagine Him smiling in the way that fathers do and taking my small gifts and saying, “Good enough.”