Be Honest with Ourselves When Close Enough Isn’t Good Enough

Every Sunday evening, I make a list of tasks or goals to accomplish in the coming week. Jenn and I share our lists and hold each other accountable. Last week, I was very, very close to finishing my week’s accountability tasks. At first I thought to myself, “I put in over 50 hours on this week’s 27 tasks, and I even did extra tasks that weren’t on my list. I’m close enough to call it a win.” I figured I could safely round up 70 minutes of using the Rift to the two hours I stated in my goal. I got 95% of the 3D-printing done I needed, and I only had a couple hours left, which I’d finish on Monday morning.

But then I thought, “Be honest with myself. No, I didn’t finish.” That admission forced me to ask myself why I didn’t finish. In truth, I screwed around Sunday morning and all day Saturday. I could have worked harder during the week too. I easily could have found the extra 3-4 hours of work somewhere in my week.

But what about rest? Won’t I burn out if I’m forever working too hard and don’t take time for myself? No, even that argument doesn’t let me off the hook. If I acknowledge that I needed the rest and time off from working all the time, then I need to consider that I’m doing too much. I need to do less. Scale back my goals to something more realistic. Eliminate projects. Do one or maybe two things at a time (i.e. projects, ventures, hobbies, etc.), but not 12.

All this learning came from me being honest with myself and admitting that close enough isn’t good enough.

Lesson Not Learned

Why do I keep having to learn this lesson, that I can only do one thing great, or two things well, or three things OK, or four things shoddily, and I simply can’t do five things? Because I’m not learning the lesson. I see it, I think it, but I don’t always take it to heart and act on it. It’ll keep coming up for me again and again until I change my behaviors. And I can only change my behaviors when I’m truly honest with myself like I was last Sunday. I hope I’m finally learning the lesson this time.

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