Want to Shine? Forget Perfection, Be Excellent!

Want to Shine? Forget Perfection, Be Excellent!

Nothing is perfect, not even perfection itself! In fact, perfectionism can really get in the way of your success. Not only does it waste valuable time, it sidetracks you from your priorities and interferes with getting concrete results – even imperfect ones – which prevents you from reaching your full potential.

Go for it! Propel your career by applying this valuable advice that we repeat to every participant of the Ambition Challenge: forget perfection, be excellent. Here’s how.

1. Look at the big picture

Major perfectionists tend to get stuck on the details rather than seeing the big picture. But, fixating on details stops you from focussing on a project’s purpose and end goal. To succeed, shine, and be ready to rise to many more challenges – without exhausting yourself! – it’s important to balance your energy levels and let go of the subtleties that you’re likely alone in noticing.

2. Pinpoint your criteria for success

By aiming for excellence over perfection, you’ll do more while carrying a lighter load. You’ve got to pick your battles by figuring out which criteria to prioritize. These must, above all, enhance the project. If you’re launching a new product, one of these success criteria could be getting a good review upon its release. Establishing your priorities will help you advance more rapidly and more efficiently.

Wanting to do too much can waste your time. Instead of obsessing over details that will go unnoticed, try to highlight your contributions to a project.

3. Act, don’t wait

If you wait for all the winning conditions to be aligned before completing a project or embarking on a new adventure, you’ll go nowhere. Stop making excuses and go for it. You can readjust along the way. This is how many entrepreneurs launch their products: market them during the pre-launch phase and adapt them based on public response. There will always be critics. Don’t try to please everyone.

4. Investigate

Despite the files piling up and the stress and fatigue that take over at times, you struggle to see how you could do things differently? It might be time to take a step back and investigate… What is driving you to set such high standards? Fear of displeasing people, of falling short, of failing? Perhaps behind a seemingly unshakeable self-confidence hides an intruder that is harmful but conquerable: impostor syndrome. Curious? Here’s a little quiz to expose it.

Since ideal colleagues and a perfect boss don’t exist, dare to be excellent. And tell yourself that if you were perfect, not many people would want to rub elbows with you…

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Author profile

Michèle Provencher


Michèle Nicole Provencher is a trained scriptwriter who has worked in music, media, and advertising. In 2018, she published her first book, the autobiographical novel Mardi comme mardi, which was received to great acclaim.