The dangers of waiting for perfect

I could wait for perfect.

I could wait until the weather warms up just a few more degrees and the winds subside to nothing more than a gentle breeze.

I could wait until the roads are completely free of winter’s slush and snow and pockets of ice.

I could wait until I drop a few of the excess pounds that came over the holidays and a period of stress eating.

I could wait until my new house is entirely unpacked. Until I’ll all caught up with work. Until the stars have aligned.

But while I sit around waiting for perfect, I miss out on everything else.

All right, so I won’t be setting any personal records at next weekend’s Y-10. I’m not running as fast as last year. Life has thrown me some curve balls, which I’ve turned into blooper singles to shallow left. Not every pitch is a fastball down the middle and not every swing is a centerfield home run. (Pardon the heavy baseball analogy, but it’s polar vortex cold in these parts and the thought of summer baseball brings a thaw to my brain.)

If I waited for perfect, I’d miss mornings like this. It was still cold and the wind, while no longer gusting, was still brisk. The footing on the roads was inconsistent. My average pace was absolutely dismal. But the morning was beautiful. The sunrise was colorful over the dots of ice on Lake Ontario. My body felt great. My mind felt clear. There was a freshness to the start of the day.

What we turn our attention to grows.

If my attention stays on perfect, more accurately if my focus is on how things are imperfect, then my life will reflect more struggles and difficulties and annoyance and impatience.

If my attention stays on possibility, if it focuses on the present moment, then that perfection, that end result, doesn’t really matter as much. I’m no longer waiting for something to happen. I’m creating. And that is where all the power lies.

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