Quality

“Done” is better than “perfect.” Do you know why? Perfectionism is just an excuse for procrastinators, and it kills your productivity!

Every one of us has an idea of a potential perfect result of anything we’re working on: a product, a project, a post. And it’s awesome, because it keeps us motivated to start the project to begin with. But actually, the truth is, the finished product will never be perfect. You will never be able to achieve your perfect vision, because it doesn’t really exist.

If you expect to make something perfect before showing it to your boss, to your customers, to your friends, or to the world, chances are you’re never going to actually show it. Even if you created a masterpiece, you’ll never know about it, because you’ll never give it a beta version.

Just accept this fact: Surely, no one will talk about your first draft or love it immediately, but this first version is always necessary. In the tech world, this idea is called the Minimum Viable Product. Your first draft of anything will help you to revise and improve it to the point of value. Your goal must be to never miss this step! Anyway, reality is always better than any great idea. As long as your perfect product stays in your head, it has no value to anyone else — perfect or otherwise.

To beat your poisonous perfection mindset, use design thinking principles. According to these principles, the process is as important as the product. Focus on the five steps of design thinking: discovery, interpretation, ideation, experimentation/testing and evolution/iteration, rather than focusing on outcomes — and rather than being afraid of a potential failure.

Practice by finishing what you begin and move on — many interesting things are waiting for you.

You have to finish things — that’s what you learn from, you learn by finishing things.— Niel Gaiman

Table of contents | Next essay