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Why You Need to Stop Waiting Until Things are ‘Perfect’





As a recovering perfectionist myself, I hate to break this to you*, but it’s a necessary realisation for you to have if you’re ever going to make progress.

Nothing – absolutely nothing – is ever 100%, completely, impossibly, according-to-everyone-in-the-world perfect.


If you are waiting until something is perfect to put it out into the world – your photos, your brand, your tweet, your product… you will never do it.

We often hold back from putting ourselves and our work out into the world because we’re afraid. We cloak it in the idea of ‘perfectionism’, because that gives us a seemingly lofty and logical reason not to ship the work.

“Oh, I’m still working on getting my product design just right.”

“Oh, I’m still tweaking my photography, but I’ll have it sorted soon, and THEN I’ll open my shop!”

“Oh, I’ll never be able to keep up a blog – so why bother starting?”


We’re not waiting until it’s perfect, because deep down, when we’re really honest with ourselves, we know it will never be perfect.

What’s really stopping us is fear.

Fear that we’ll do something wrong.

Fear that no-one will like what we have to share, or – horror of horrors – actually actively dislike it.

Fear that we’ll be discovered for the fraud we are, because we don’t really know what we’re doing. (Did you know that we ALL feel this way? Because we do.)

Fear that we’ll fail.

Fear that we might actually succeed, and what that might mean for our life.


What we’re really waiting for is courage. For that moment of bravery where we say to ourselves “$&@# it, I’m going to DO this!”


Nobody else can give you this courage. Nobody else can make the decision for you. Yes, other people can help – through their support and advice, and that’s why having a community of like-minded folk around you is really powerful.

That said, the honest truth is that it’s all up (and down) to you – you have the power and the strength to do this thing you’ve been dreaming of and scheming on for… well, possibly for years. Or even decades.

It can be tempting to look at those who are ahead of you on the path and think “but, it’s just so easy for them! They know what they’re doing, and they do it so well. I’ll never be able to do what they do.”.

That. Is. Rubbish.

Do you really believe it was always like that?

You know that we all started out knowing absolutely nothing, right? Every single one of those people you look up to started out with zero knowledge at some point in their lives and careers.

The difference between you and them is that they have years of hard work, late nights, reading, learning, stress, failure, success, more failure, and guts.

They have grit. They have perseverance. They have patience. They have done the work, and stuck it out because they have an unshakeable faith in themselves.

This awesome little instagram image from the fabulous Sean McCabe sums it up beautifully.


Stop being afraid of the ‘what if’s’.

Just put yourself out there.

Learn something every day.

Try something every day.

Show up, every day.

Stop using perfection as an excuse for not starting. Start, and then make it better, little by little.

And if you don’t? You will never know what you might have created if you’d only had the courage to show up.


Further Reading:


* Actually, I lie. I LOVE to break this to you, because if you finally, truly believe it, there’s no limit on what you’ll be able to achieve.



If you’re already showing up and growing a successful business… but want MORE, then don’t miss out on joining me and a group of other dedicated, passionate creatives for SHIFT – my e-course for more advanced businesses. It will help you shift from 2nd gear to highway speed with your biz, and it starts March 9. Registration opens soon, find out more here.



Van Den has written 319 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.


What say you?