Perfection is the Enemy of ‘Good Enough’

Every creator aspires to manifest perfection. But what if our very pursuit of flawlessness holds us back? Welcome to my world of creation, where “good enough” is a delightful destination and imperfections tell a story of their own. Today, I invite you to my recent adventure—installing plywood paneling in my workshop.

Perfection, in theory, sounds wonderful. Yet, its pursuit often breeds stress and discontent, setting an unattainable bar. Conversely, embracing ‘good enough’ feels liberating, propelling us forward with a joy of exploration. Let me share my plywood paneling project as part of setting up the studio in my shop. I had a flawless vision, but reality had different plans.

My inspiration was the amazing looking plywood panels I had seen on Pinterest and architecture magazines. They had taken a basic building material and elevated it to an artistic design element. How hard could it be I asked myself.

Selecting the wrong wood type was my first hiccup. I stared at the $50-$100 sheets of plywood at Home Depot and Lowes. Which to select?

Then the screws I initially chose weren’t ideal either. I was using metal framing and these screw tips were bigger than the shaft leading to them boring out the metal and not grabbing with the shaft.

The paneling, in the end, was far from perfect—gaps at the edges, blemishes on the sheets. My vision of perfection crumbled, but it gave way to a more accommodating mindset. I transitioned from dismissing small mistakes to appreciating the unique character these ‘imperfections’ brought.

In the process, the mistakes were not setbacks, but stepping stones. My struggles with the wrong screws taught me to choose better. The incorrect wood type led to understanding more about material selection. These lessons proved more valuable than achieving a blemish-free surface. I was evolving, learning, and above all, enjoying the process, even amidst the flaws.

Process of Fading Perfectionism

Looking at the completed project, I feel pride. Not because it’s perfect—it’s far from that. But it’s mine. I crafted it, I struggled with it, and in the process, I’ve grown. Each gap and blemish now speak of the journey I undertook, adding a distinct character to my workshop.

In my workshop, imperfections and I coexist happily. They are the tangible traces of my experiences, my choices, and my learning. They remind me of my journey from the vision of a perfect panel to accepting, and even celebrating, the blemished reality.

In the end, this plywood paneling project encapsulates why I love being a creator. It’s not about nailing perfection—it’s about immersing myself in the process, navigating through unexpected challenges, and evolving with each mistake. The joy of creation, for me, lies not in an impeccable final product but in the winding journey towards it.

In a world that often glorifies the flawless, I invite you to embrace the charm of ‘good enough.’ It’s okay to fall short of perfection; it’s okay to make mistakes. After all, that’s where the real adventure lies. The cracks, the gaps, the tiny irregularities—they give our creations character, they make our journeys unique. So, let’s not just create—let’s learn, evolve, and even stumble. For each imperfection is a story waiting to be told.