The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good
Friday, April 06, 2012
I've been back here, tracking my food and exercise for about 2 weeks now. The weight is coming off -- food tracking is making a big difference in keeping me accountable, and somehow, I am not finding it as annoying as I used to.
I tend to be a bit of perfectionist and sometimes I start to wonder whether I'm tracking everything perfectly. What if the mug I'm using for water at work doesn't hold 2 cups of water, but 1.5 cups? How much of a serving should I call that mouthful of food? Did that spinning class really burn 593 calories? I want to make sure everything is tracked perfectly.
For all of us who are perfectionists, we need to keep in mind the line from Voltaire's poem, the perfect is the enemy of the good. Perfection is not always achievable. Good is always achievable. Tracking my water intake is good. Whether I drank exactly 8 cups of water is not the important measure, the important measure is that I am aware of my water intake and striving to drink more of it. The fact that before starting back here, I only drank water when I worked out, and for the last week and half I've been drinking roughly 8 cups a day is good.
Perfectionism makes me focus too much on the destination, and not the journey. Perfectionism could derail my journey entirely, because when I can't achieve perfection, I get frustrated and quit. This time, I'm not quitting. This time, I'm focusing on the good.