“Done is better than great.”
~Dr. K. Sherrod
I’ve been running on this idea that “done is better than good” ever since reading Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. (Please reference my Big Magic posts if you haven’t already. Her ideas liberate the creative mind.)
I’m upgrading “done is better than good” to “done is better than great”. Because, and let me be totally vulnerable with you, I have spent most of my life shooting for GRRREAT which has stopped me from completing many, many creative projects.
If you set a goal of P.E.R.F.E.C.T. then you’re liable to 1) give up in a heap of tears and shame 2) flitter around in fits of avoidance and business (read: busy-ness) or 3) just keep working and working and working and working and working and never get jack s**t actually accomplished. Bottom line, you never hit the “finished” line.
Again, let’s remember: done is better than great. Dr. Sherrod might go a step further and say that “good enough” is indeed good enough. I personally love how saying “good enough” feels!
Please be aware, I’m not advocating for crappy work. There are few people out there who take the above concepts a bit far and produce work that deserves a few more minutes of attention. (Just a few, dude, pleeeeease just 10 more minutes of your time.) And let’s face it, there will be people who say the same thing about this post too. So be it. At least it will get published or to it’s finished line.
What’s the point of all this “good enough” talk?
Making Room in Small Ways
One way I’ve seen people heal from voice trouble is by letting their healing creep in one little bit at a time. They make little pockets of space for better thoughts, better habits, or better intentions. They make room for healing in small ways that eventually add up to the end goal.
We are creatures of habit, would you agree? So, sometimes trying to make all the changes all at once fails us. (Not just sometimes, actually. Most of the time.) We benefit from making small adjustments toward healing in our attitudes or perceptions coupled with small actions because [small attitude adjustments + small actions + repetition + time] wins the race.
“Authentic and positive relationships are not built in a day. Put your best and most honest self forward and then trust the process. A mentor of mine said that experience is just time in disguise. Neither can be truncated or expedited. You just have to keep showing up, keep expanding your reach, keep learning and growing, and individual relationships will fall into place as they should.”
from TomatoSass, a Blog for Women in the Music Industry
Brené Brown continues to give us gifts of magnificent proportions. I just saw her talk on the “Anatomy of Trust” and wanted to rebroadcast it’s existence in case someone out there happens upon this blog and has space for 20 minutes or so of life-altering goodness. (video below, btw)
I love technology and our ability to freely broadcast transformative information! So much it makes me want to cry, but I digress. On with the show.
Brené’s research reveals how trust functions, and in typical BB fashion she brings it home through real-life stories and her wide, open heart. This video settles like warm hugs in your chest the same way a deep and intimate talk with your bestie does, at a time when you need it the most.
Yesterday someone suggested I write a proposal for a conference presentation on how to get along. More specifically, about how people in the professional voice arena can create avenues of goodwill and constructive dialog. Maybe – be friendlier to each other, and more open to exchanging ideas?
His point was, “its lovely when voice professionals come together and get along, but how do you do that? What makes that possible? We need someone to talk about it.”
I don’t know how to write that proposal yet. I’m not sure how to instruct others on how to “get along” when I have so much to learn about it myself.
Please understand, my chosen profession (call me crazy for choosing it) is fraught with historic tension, fear, anger and strained relationships. I won’t even claim to understand this psychological history, because I don’t and don’t want to. I have heard enough stories and experienced enough relationship woes between voice teachers to know something is potentially awry.
Do relationship problems exist more chronically or pervasively in voice than in other professions? Who cares. They exist, and there are historic “dividing lines” between voice scientists and voice teachers, classical singers and pop singers, university faculty and community voice teachers. Many lines have been drawn in many people’s heads, and you can probably think of a few more than I’ve listed here.
I get tired, y’all.
Tired of constant negativity, finding fault, and altogether tired of our culture’s obsession with focusing on what’s wrong.
These traits exist in me as much as the next person, and I am learning to be more patient and loving with myself on this subject.
But, I also believe in giving compliments, encouraging people, and focusing on ALL the things that are going well. I think it is a powerful and effective way to build relationships and help ourselves grow. And from what I can tell, this is not necessarily a popular way to be.
In fact, I’m going to go as far as to say that focusing on the “what’s right” of a situation, or seeing the most positive aspects of something or someone, is often perceived as naive, weak, or just plain dumb. I’m okay with that because I’ve discovered that being ultra positive works better than being ultra critical. For me, and obviously not everyone. Remember, we all get to decide how to play the game of life.
A beautiful woman enters the room. She is impeccably dressed. Tall, with flowing black hair. Her lipstick is the perfect shade of red, and her heels match her suit as if they were designed by the same person.
And then – she starts to sing.