in Productivity

Embracing Imperfection Every Day


The original version of this post appeared on The Feast Blog.

Jerry Seinfeld writes a joke every day.

Most of them probably sucked when he started.

“…it isn’t the one-shot pushes that get us where we want to go, it is the consistent daily action that builds extraordinary outcomes.” -Brad Isaac 

Recently I started writing every day.

It’s fricken tough but every day, before I go to bed, I write.

At first it was actually a bit easier. I had nothing to prove, no one to impress. I could just write and if a few people ended up reading it, that’s awesome.

Then everything changed.

I had a few posts that became very popular.

Afterward, I found myself trying to replicate that success every time I would write. I tried to make every post epic.

If it wasn’t good enough to be “huge”, I would hesitate to write it. I was afraid of imperfection.

Have you found yourself attempting the same thing in other areas of your life?

At work do you try to do every task absolutely perfectly?

In social situations are you always looking for the perfect joke or the perfect time to ask a girl to dance?

When trying to exercise every day, do you ever wake up and decide not to go because the weather isn’t perfect, or you aren’t completely energized?

We try to make every attempt perfect and when we can’t make it perfect, we tend avoid it altogether.

But everything in life is practice. Even if it’s “the real thing”, every task you do at work, every joke you tell and every day you go for a run is practice for the next time you do the same thing.

The point of practice isn’t to be perfect every time. It’s to do something regularly. It’s consistency.

By doing it over and over again even when you’re lacking motivation and inspiration, that’s how you’ll become great.

As you build the habit and practice every day, your chance of big wins increase you become better, more intuitive and you start to win more consistently.

Fred Wilson writes every day. Every post isn’t world changing, but a lot of them are pretty damn good because he’s been doing it so long.

“As all of you know, I write every day. It is my discipline, my practice, my thing. It forces me to think, articulate, and question. And I get feedback from it. When I hit publish, I get a rush. Every time. Just like the first time. It is incredibly powerful.” -Fred Wilson

Seth Godin writes every day and most of his posts are straight up paradigm shifting because he’s done it for so damn long.

It’s the same with any skill. The more you practice, the more consistently you’ll win.

I recently became a good cook by doing it every day for months.

Cooks don’t hit a homerun at every dinner party because they’re lucky or try super hard. They can cook an amazing dish because they’ve built a habit of cooking every day and over time, the frequency of it coming out delicious increased.

So remember…

Everything in our life is just practice for the next time we need to do it.

Don’t worry about making everything perfect. It won’t be. The only thing that matters is that you do it regularly and consistently, even if it’s imperfect.

If you can do that, you’ll start to win more frequently.

And imperfect practice will make perfect.

  • DavidSpinks

    Mandy_Vavrinak thanks Mandy!

    • Mandy_Vavrinak

      DavidSpinks very welcome, David! I’m inspired by writing every day… And maybe I’ll get to do it on my blog, even 😉

      • DavidSpinks

        Mandy_Vavrinak you should do it! (=

  • RishabhGupta

    This is early Morning in India. @DavidSpinks You Made my day. I have had read somewhere may be at Forbes or may be here at your blog 😀 😉 that A stage come in our life when we NOT work for money, neither for family nor friends- we work, because we love to do. we work because it’s in our practice. we can not skip, because we have to do. There is a only one way to feel alive- Work what you love on regular basis with improvements.

    • DavidSpinks

      RishabhGuptathat’s a good lesson. I think the point here is that when you dedicate yourself to something, you accept that there will be days that it’s harder than usual to do, but that you must do it anyway to keep things moving forward.

      • RishabhGupta

        DavidSpinks and that is the only motivation for MOVE ON. 🙂

  • benvantende

    Ok this is just what I needed to read. I did not write for a week. Not that I did not want to, but time just flew by. I am still investigating what happened there. Still motivated to write, especially after reading your article. Thanks

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