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[58] Why Perfection is a Dangerous Illusion

It is not healthy to strive for perfection. If we think everything has to be ‘perfect’ for us to start, we are likely to let ourselves down as perfection is and will always be an unattainable goal.

Many people have problems dealing with the idea of perfection and it can often scare us into not doing anything at all! This fear stops us from starting so many things – from starting our business, launching a new product, putting that instagram post up, telling people about what we do… and the list continues.

Perfection is not something you can hold onto – though you may experience a perfect moment, it is never lasting. And aiming for perfection will always fail – it’s better to aim for excellence (or even, sometimes, good-enough!).

So – how can we overcome this roadblock of perfectionism in our lives and businesses?

Instead of getting caught in this trap of feeling like what you do is never good enough, listen to this episode, as I give you some insight into how to view what you do in a healthier, happier, and more attainable manner. I talk about what it really takes to be successful – and it has nothing to do with being perfect!

I also share some very personal moments from my own life recently, which brought this lesson home to me via the juxtaposition of happiness and loss.





Quotes and highlights from this Episode:

  • It can be so easy to get caught up in the idea of perfection.
  • The idea of something being perfect is an illusion.
  • The idea of perfection can really hold us back from achievements.
  • If you are always waiting to reach perfection you will never be happy.
  • You should strive for excellence and not perfection.
  • ‘Don’t ever think ‘this isn’t perfect, I can’t put it out there’.’ {Jess}
  • Some days life just happens and you cannot reach your excellence but remember this is ok.
  • There is a constant fear of people discovering you are a fraud – everyone feels this!
  • ‘Everybody has the fear of being found out as imperfect and flawed.’ {Jess}
  • You are the only one who can push through the fear barrier.
  • Things only become easier through experience and when you spend a lot of time doing something.
  • Don’t compare yourself to others – we all have a different idea of excellence. Your insides are not comparable to someone else’s outsides.
  • It is all about consistency, learning new things, and showing up every day.
  • Don’t use perfection as an excuse to fail by never starting.
  • ‘Just start it, and build it, and grow it.’ {Jess}
  • Remember that you can’t be anywhere but where you are now, in this moment.


Download or Listen to This Episode

(You can also subscribe to the podcast and listen to this episode on iTunes + Stitcher – just search ‘Create & Thrive’.)


Van Den has written 318 posts in this blog.

Jess Van Den is the editor of Create & Thrive, and has been a full-time creative entrepreneur since 2010. She makes eco-conscious, contemporary, handmade sterling silver jewellery under the Epheriell label, and blogs about her jewellery and other beautiful things at You can catch her on twitter @JessVanDen.


Robin Brown

I just recently found your website and over the last 2 days I have listened to several podcasts which I am loving I have to tell you. I have listened to several other people discuss insecurities and reasons why we can’t commit to what we truly want or maybe need to do to feel complete. In all these years I have never EVER felt what they have said… until you. I don’t know why you make it different and more importantly believable but you do. And I thank you for that.

I am truly sorry for your loss, and is nothing to apologize for. I would bet that people like myself, think more of you for the respect and love you showed for your fuzzy friend. Take care. R~


You are so very welcome, Robin. I’m so glad I managed to elucidate that struggle in a way that resonated with you. And thank you so much for your condolences x

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