Strive for progress, not perfection

"Strive for progress, not perfection" - unknown.

I get the impression many trying to build their business online spend too much time learning when they should be acting.

Too much effort goes into learning multiple traffic techniques instead of implementing the steps as they are learned. Too much thought goes into wondering if their product is going to be good enough instead of creating. People seem to believe that everything has to be in place and perfect instead of implementing improvements on a rolling ongoing basis.

However I believe that you should not strive to get everything perfect before taking action.

The graphic that I’m using as a header is a good example. I wanted something to use on my blog and Facebook page that suggested my approach to internet marketing. Putting components in place and building a business step by step. I was going to show this idea by have an image of labelled building blocks connected together.

However when I came to arrange and connect the blocks it became apparent that the connections were too complex to show in a simple image. I could have spent ages trying to arrange the blocks so the multiple connections between them made up a tidy, organised graphic. Instead I decided to drop the connections and just show the blocks. I may return to the problem at a later date, but it’s way down my to do list.

I could have then passed creating the image to someone with graphics experience. Instead I used firstcovers.com and did it myself. And I know I did a less than perfect job. Yet the uneven block sides and corners that aren’t quite right embody the principle I’m refering to. If it’s good enough to get the idea across it doesn’t have to be perfect.

Having created the graphic I could move on to more important matters. Like the content for my blog.

When I decided to take part in giveaway events I could have spent weeks creating several ebooks, setting up a back-end offer and an email sequence. Instead I made one ebook and entered my first event for over two years. Consequently I started building my list sooner.

If you cannot think of specific progress you have made in the past month beside studying then in my opinion you are far better off jumping in and taking some action. And don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Google has famously progressed in the past using the ‘fail fast’ principle. The quicker they make mistakes the quicker they learn and the sooner their product is better.

Take action and get things moving. Start laying the foundations of your business and plan to build from there. It’s much better to start building your internet presence than to remain invisible online while you strive for perfection.

Are you a perfectionist? Is perfection holding you back from taking any form of action to move your online business forward? Do you wait until everything is ‘just right’ or do you have the ‘fail fast’ attitude? Let me know in the comments below.

David

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8 Comments

  1. My problem is the more I learn the less I feel I know what to do. Sounds crazy but its true. Don’t think its perfectionism just confusion.

    P.S. I even got confused when you were talking about the header. I thought you meant the quote picture, not the header for your blog!

    Paul

    1. Sorry about the graphics confusion Paul. As far as feeling more confused the more you learn, what you’re going through is a common experience in the IM niche. Been there myself. Whether it’s perfectionism or not you need to focus on one thing, put the rest on the backburner and take action without being distracted. Let me know how you get on.

      David

      1. Do you wait to act on something until you have all the facts? Until you’ve mastered all the techniques? YES!Do you wait to try something new until you’ve gathered all the necessary ideas? Until you’re sure you’ve got it down? YES!And it makes my head hurt! I have so many printouts of tips, to do lists, ebooks marketing plans, sticky notes, mind maps. Finally I put them all into a big pile on the kitchen table and started to cry. Just kidding. They are in a pile but I decided that if I wanted to start blogging then I’d better just DO it. Am I happy with my blog design? Not really. Could I improve it, definitely but I figured it’s better to get some content on there first and improve on the aesthetics later.

        1. Spot on Damar. It can be difficult to change your approach if you’ve always wanted to be totally prepared before starting something, but in this business starting and getting some momentum is more important than perfection.

  2. I’m not a Virgo, I’m a Libra, but I still struggle with this & I’ve woerrid that a project won’t come out right, in my mind or will be judged as not being worthy. I start lots of projects that were going great & not completed them, for fear that they’ll be judged or something will somehow go horribly wrong, at the last moment. What if it does though, however unlikely that might be? I can learn from that & move on. Life is a learning process & if you don’t ever risk failure, you also risk not learning or growing. Excellent article!

    1. Stretching ourselves beyond our comfort zone and regarding the results as a learning process is the right approach. However it’s easier said than done. That’s why it’s so important to have and maintain the right mindset for this work.

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