I listened to a wonderful interview with blogger, author and interior designer Erin Gates on The Lively Show yesterday. It dealt with the issue of perfectionism. Erin spoke about her struggle perfectionism, and how she manages it.
As I was driving home from the studio, her words began to sink in and the wheels in my brain began to turn. And it struck me:
Perfectionism is preventing me from posting on this blog.
I spend so much time trying to make each post ‘Pinterest perfect’ that I become paralyzed and don’t post anything at all. I get hung up on editorial calendars, the right headlines, fantastic photography etc. While these are important parts of blogging, they overwhelm me to the point of not producing any work.
Erin said that she always felt that her perfectionism was a horrible thing and something to be embarrassed about, until someone said to her recently:
You have to thank it, you have to be grateful for it – you have to learn to live with it and manage it so it doesn’t destroy you…..
Huh – so may be there’s a way to manage my perfectionism and post more than once a month. Perhaps I could be grateful to my perfectionism for making me work hard on each post, but at the same time know when it’s time to hit publish and walk away.
And guess what? I have 92 posts in draft!
92 pieces of writing and projects that aren’t good enough to publish. Clearly I have something to say, ideas that I want to share, but I think I’m afraid of my own voice. I’m afraid of putting my real self out there. I’m afraid of being seen. But in the words of the wise Brene Brown:
Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.
So what if I show up here every day and write. What if I show up and share part of myself. What’s the worst that can happen? No one will read it. But at least I will have given it a shot. At least I will know that I tried to put something of value out into the world.
Photo credit: Ali Manning (that’s me)