When Good Enough Is Not Good Enough
We must be extraordinary. Excellence in all we do is one of the core values that we are forced to memorize in the U.S. Air Force. In other words, be the best of the best and don’t mess up.
Supposedly average is unacceptable and normal is boring. Good enough is not good enough.
The secret is that people are taking the ordinary and boasting as if it is extraordinary.
You called the recycling truck to pick up our used paper then you just saved the government thousands of dollars and single-handedly halted climate change. That’s how absurd every little act was written up in performance reports to fake excellence for members when I served.
No one wants to be average because average means mediocre, second-rate, passable. Average says you’re nothing special, but you’ll do for now.
That nagging aversion to being average is why we let perfectionism keep us paralyzed. Many feel that if they cannot perform to perfection, then they will not perform at all. Boom, they’re stuck. Doomed to fail because they refuse to try because of the fear of failing.
We need to be honest about excellence. We need to recognize that human beings are not machines so excellence in all we do is unrealistic. Just because you’re not perfect does not mean you’re not special or worthy. At the end of the day, we all want the same things.
Our basic needs for purpose and fulfillment in life are the same. We crave love and happiness. We celebrate births, birthdays, weddings, and achievements. We want to provide for our loved ones and to protect them.
Not everyone can be the best at everything. That doesn’t mean give up.
You will always be special to those that love you. You don’t have to exaggerate numbers or fluff up any reports for them. At the end of the day you are number one to the people that matter.