The Gift of Imperfection

christmas tips imperfect action sustainable living Apr 29, 2021

I was out finalising my Christmas shopping on the weekend and (after much stress) realised I had forgotten my own message. To focus on progress, not perfection. As a recovering perfectionist, this is something I find myself in need of frequent reminders.

Last Christmas I had used up most of my leftover wrapping paper and if you’ve seen my Top 3 Tips for a Sustainable Christmas you may have seen some pretty staggering figures (Aussies use enough wrapping paper to circle the equator almost 4 times!).

So one of the things I was trying to do this year was reduce my use of wrapping paper that would end up in landfill.

Instead, I ended up in a bit of a state spending ages searching for an alternative for EVERY. SINGLE. GIFT.

In my focus to reduce our waste with wrapping paper, I forgot ALL the other steps I had taken to reduce our footprint this Christmas and instead focused on the ONE thing that wasn’t ‘perfect’ – needing wrapping paper for just 3 gifts this Christmas!

I know I’m not the only one who finds it easy to give myself a hard time about what I’m not doing and forget the good I am doing.

One of my mentors constantly says ‘70% done is perfect. 100% is failure’. This is because when we get caught in striving for perfection (100%), we end up going round in circles and not actually making any progress.

In fact, if I focus on 70% (in this case reducing most of my waste), I actually do so much more because I can take action more easily and it feels good.

And easy.

And light.

Which ultimately makes it more desirable for me to keep trying next time.

In trying to achieve 100%, either it gets too hard and we throw our hands in the air, not bothering with anything….

Or we end up stressed and we resent the whole process!

70% is most definitely the goal, !

When we set the bar at 70%, we give ourselves a much-needed break, but also allow the process to become so much lighter and more enjoyable. And since ‘the process’ is actually this little thing we call ‘life’, isn’t that what it’s actually about?

So in this, my final email for 2020, I want to take this opportunity to thank you for all that you are already doing to live more sustainably and for contributing to a better future for our planet, for our children and for us.

Because if you’re here, you’re aware, and you’ve already taken the first step.

And in case, like me, you’ve allowed that guilt or stress to creep in this Christmas, I want to remind you that 70% is perfect.

From my home to yours, I wish you a very Merry Christmas and an abundant New Year.

 

 

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