I’ve had it with that word – perfect! I believe we should start a petition to get it removed from everything. If you stop and think about it, no one or nothing is, or ever will be, perfect. The Webster Dictionary definition is:
Definition of perfect
(Entry 1 of 3)
1a: being entirely without fault or defect : flawless a perfect diamond
b: satisfying all requirements : accurate
c: corresponding to an ideal standard or abstract concept a perfect gentleman
d: faithfully reproducing the original specifically : letter-perfect
e: legally valid
2: expert, proficient practice makes perfect
3a: pure, total
b: lacking in no essential detail : complete
c: obsolete : sane
d: absolute, unequivocal enjoys perfect happiness
e: of an extreme kind : unmitigated a perfect bratan act of perfect foolishness
Now think about it – just how stupid is this? I will never be (nor claim to be) faultless, flawless, seamless, or some other thesaurus comparisons of the word. It just does not make sense. I would never want to be perfect. Once you get there, what would you have left?
I love my mistakes and flaws. They are what makes me, me. If not for my screw-ups, I would not have learned how to laugh at myself so well.
I know that I am really good at a bunch of things. I have received compliments on many of things I do well. I also enjoy those compliments, and they make me feel good. The minute someone says: “Oh, it’s just perfect!” I want to run away or scream at them. The pressure we put on perfection or the act of trying to reach it is unbearable and wrong.
The first line of the definition says exactly why we should never use the word:
being entirely without fault
Just who, or what is like that? I have put some of my yarn creations into the local County Fair, mostly to see how I would compare with others around here. It was not for any reason other than I was curious (that and several friends pushed me to do it: “It’s so beautiful, you should enter it into the fair!” How could I resist?). I wondered how I would stack up against some other local pros at the craft.
I happened to get a blue ribbon on my only item. It was a huge sea-green afghan that I made and gave as a Christmas gift to my boss later that year. It was beautiful but FAR from perfect. I watched the Judge at the fair look through all the entries. I thought for sure she was going to find the mistakes I made in mine. Well, I don’t know it if was because it was so huge (would cover a king-sized bed), or if she just fell in love with looking at it as much as I loved making it – but she gave me the blue. I never put another craft into the fair. The pressure was just too much.
PERFECT. If something is perfect, does that mean we should not strive to make more of it, or make it better? If we do make more, or worse make it better; then what happens to that original perfect item? Is it not perfect anymore because we now make it better? What if someone else comes along and makes a better version and everyone calls that perfect? Does that mean the one I created is now imperfect? A person could go crazy dwelling on perfection!
One of my goals for next year is to try, very hard, to not use that word. There are so many other ways to compliment someone on their looks, their manners, their creations without putting so much undue pressure on them:
Just to name a few. Maybe, just maybe, if we stop putting so much power in the word “perfect,” we might become better, funnier, and happier people. I have been binge-watching a bunch of classic chick-flicks and never realized before just how many of the women in these movies freaks out trying to be perfect. I feel sorry for Jane Austin; she must have gone through hell back then. At least that is the feeling I get from the way she writes her women. They have flaws (as we all do) but they seem to be ashamed and embarrassed by them instead of celebrating them. I have a bad habit of dragging my feet instead of picking them up when I walk – thus constantly tripping. My own stupid fault, I know it, and I laugh about it even when I fall on the ground.
So, here’s to our faults and lack of perfection…may it never, EVER be a thing in my life to stress over!
You can also check me out on: www.helbergfarmstories.com for fun stories from our farm.