Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Perfect: Enemy of the Good (Part II)

Earlier this week I discussed how perfect can impede the good and the better in product development and business.

Perfectionism can also get in the way of your own well-being and happiness.  For more, read Brene Brown's The Gifts of Imperfection:  Let Go of Who You Think You Are Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are.  Brown's TED Talk and her interview with Gretchen Rubin of The Happiness Project sum up many of the themes in the book, and she emphasizes that the seemingly paradoxical actions of embracing vulnerability and flaws and getting over the fear of being authentic are keys to becoming stronger.  Put another way in a recent Guardian article describing Action for Happiness, acts of generosity and expressions of gratitude can be uncomfortable initially, but taking those leaps strengthens crucial connections and trust.

Addressing the other side of the coin, Brown identifies a possible source of the never-ending supply of blame being thrown around in the world, noting that "rather than doing the difficult work of embracing our own vulnerabilities we expose, attack, and ridicule."

And yes, she also contributes a piece called The Strength of Vulnerability in End Malaria.

Leonard Cohen summed it up pretty well, speaking very softly from a window in the Tower of Song, in his song  Anthem:  

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in.
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