Having a creative mind makes for an amazing journey in life. Your mind is always brimming with ideas and ambition. You have interesting, meaningful conversations with others. You surround yourself with inspiration and beauty.
Couple that with Obsessive Compressive Disorder (OCD). A set of rules that reside inside your mind. Rules made up by your own brain, for your own body to comply with. All in the ultimate pursuit of balance and order in life.
Perfectionism is a natural side effect, it seems. This can both help and hinder the creative artist. It pushes you to do awesome. To be awesome. To strive for nothing short of compete perfection in everything you do. To accept nothing less than the best. To never settle for B-grade.
In my own life, I see this played out. My blouses are perfectly organized in my closet, lined up neatly by the length of their sleeves. I color code my bottles of nail polish. My kitchen cabinets are organized just so. Even the books on my bookshelf are in a certain order.
But I also see the downside of this all-or-nothing way of thinking displayed before me. My house is either spotless or cringe-worthy; seldom in between. If I want to start a project, but don’t have the preferred resources, sometimes I won’t even try. I was raised to believe that I can do anything I set my mind to do; I do firmly believe this. But sometimes, I think I fear failure…thus giving up before I even begin. Forgetting that failure is often inevitable on the road to success.
A creative mind with perfectionism all too often means having countless amazing ideas that never get off the ground, solely because of this self-defeating mindset of “all-or-nothing.” Think of Thomas Edison, who invented the light bulb (I’m going to do one of my own pet peeves right now and bring up a cliché example, yes.) What if he had been too afraid of failure? What if he had let that stop him from even attempting to reach his goal? The answer is, someone else probably would have invented the light bulb anyway!
But, humor aside, why waste our intellect? Why waste our creativity? Why waste our potential? Why rob ourselves of the joy of success, simply because we are subconciously afraid of those inevitable speed bumps on the road to our goal?
So, in my own life, I’ve decided to turn a new leaf. Now, I’m going to push myself, even if I don’t do well at first. Even if I only make a dent. Even if I don’t accomplish my goal at first. Even if my efforts look dumb and petty compared to where I want to be. Because if I never go out on a limb and try, how can I succeed? They say doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.
There’s another famous saying that I don’t remember word for word, but to paraphrase it: the only one who doesn’t make mistakes is the one who doesn’t try. So we have to start somewhere. Every person who is great at what they do, started somewhere; probably very far from where they are now.
So I challenge you to put your best foot forward. Get out there and start. Do something. Even if it’s not quite what you envisioned at first. Because it will be, in time. Let the creative juices flow. Because only then, can we realize our true potential. #practicemakesperfect