I am a perfectionist. I freely admit it – call me a geek, call me anal, whatever you want, but I am not denying the fact at all.
What I’m wondering is whether my perfectionism is my friend or my foe? Let’s discuss…
Take this blog for instance. From the time when I decided that I was going to do a blog until the day it actually had it’s debut was a span of about 3 – 4 months. Why? Because everything MUST be perfect before I even begin! When I finally handed the task over to my handy dandy web developer, Diane Kelm from Envision Designz, I had already wasted about 2 months humming and hawing about what I was going to write about. I was compiling lists and reading everyone else’s blogs, and wondering whether I could actually become a “Writer”.
In the end I had a huge number of blog posts pre-written and ready to publish, just in case I couldn’t think of anything in a pinch. Now, I’m realizing just how easy it is to come up with useful and interesting topics. Like this one! I was participating in a success circle teleconference with some fellow VAs and it turns out one of them had gone through the exact same scenario, and so, like me, they wrote about it. Voila!
So in this case, I think my perfectionism could be classified as a foe – it delayed my blog debut when it was totally not necessary.
On the other hand, I can think of cases where perfectionism comes in really handy. For example, when I’m creating any kind of detailed documentation. Or, when I’m proofreading something for a client (or myself for that matter) – very handy! Granted, there have been times in the past when I’ve gone a bit overboard, like how I couldn’t seem to stop myself from proofreading notes that I would pass to my buddies back in high school if you can believe it, but for the most part perfectionism comes in very handy indeed when working as a VA.
In the end I think I’ll have to call it a tie. As long as I try my best to recognize when I’m going overboard, I’ll keep and appreciate my perfectionism, thank you very much.
How about you? I’d love to hear any examples of how you’ve experienced perfectionism and your opinions on whether you think it’s a friend or foe…