Perfectionism is a form of procrastination.
It’s a way of putting things off that probably scare you, or that you find difficult. So instead of just pushing forward, you use the excuse that you want things to be perfect; you want them to be right, you want them to look good and you want them to sound good. There are lots of different ways perfectionism can hold you back in business.
When I first started doing Facebook lives in my group, I worried about what I looked like. I don’t have the perfect hair, the perfect makeup or a professional backdrop. I worried if I looked professional. I worried about what I sound like; I’ve got quite a thick Geordie accent, and I wondered if people would be able to understand me. Instead of just getting on and going live, I was messing around, procrastination. I bought some expensive equipment; a ring light and stand to hold my phone and a microphone – I must have invested a couple hundred quid easily just in things to make my Facebook lives better. They didn’t. Now I have a simple setup. I use my laptop propped on top of a couple of books to get it the right height and that’s it!
I spent all of that money for nothing, just because I was trying to be perfect. I was trying to be like all the big celebrity coaches with big productions like Amy Porterfield. She’s turned over something like $27 million in her business and I was like ‘why am I trying to be like her?’. I’m not her, I’m me, and I want to be me. That was a form of perfectionism that was holding me back and I was using it as an excuse to stop me from doing what I need to do which was get more visible.
But you never learn unless you make mistakes and making mistakes is the quickest way of learning. You have to make mistakes in business, and people will relate to you more if you do make mistakes. I don’t know about you, but when I watch things that are perfect, all it does this make me feel bad. It makes me think ‘I’ll never be that good, so why bother’. It holds us back because we’re so busy trying to be this perfect person we don’t see the bigger picture. You have to remember, that some of these people have a HUGE team. They have their hair and the makeup done by professionals, they have pro cameras, they have someone that edits their scripts for them. They’ve got all of that help whereas, if you’re just at home by yourself in your business and don’t have all that support and equipment, you’re never going to get the same results. You’re comparing apples with pears.
I think that more people relate to me because of they see the real me, who I am on a day to day basis. The fact that I’m not scared of showing the real me, being imperfect and showing up no matter what a good thing is. It means I help more people and that is the whole point of what I’m doing. Who actually cares if I have a spot on my face?
Remember that practice makes perfect. If you see someone you admire and their video is polished or their photo looks perfect, go back a couple of years to when they first started out and see what they were like then. At the start, I bet they weren’t so polished. Everyone has to learn their craft, and the best way of learning is by showing up and doing it.
There are 3 simple steps you can take to stop perfectionism holding you back in your business.
Step 1 – Remember that done is better than perfect.
You have the ability to help people solve a problem. You need to get that information out there as best you can in your current situation. Once that information is out there helping people and your business grows, then you can improve upon it.
Step 2 – Don’t obsess over feedback.
This is why I think a lot of us want things to be perfect; because we don’t want any negative feedback. You need to realise that no matter what you do, there will always be some negative feedback. You need to just accept that. Don’t take it personally. You can’t be the right solution for everybody. And you know what, that’s fine.
Step 3 – Practice, practice, practice.
You will improve over time. Accept where you are now, you can’t have all the bells and whistles from the get-go. So, your Facebook cover isn’t the right colour, or you don’t think your website design looks as professional as you want it to. As long as you are showing up and helping people, does it really matter. It’s all stuff that can be worked on as your business grows. What is important is to keep showing up, to keep helping those people and to grow you audience, the rest will all fall into place.
Try not to let perfectionism hold you back, try and catch it and realise when you’re using it as an excuse.
But if you are finding it really difficult to move forward or there is something specific in your business that you really want to work on, but you find that you’re holding yourself back, contact me to see how I can help you move forward.