I read an article recently that a professional golfer is happy with their round if they hit 5-10 shots they deem to be “perfect.” That means 7-13% of the time they feel as though they have done exactly what they practice and train for every day perfectly. What that also means is that 87-93% of the time they feel as though they weren’t their performing at their best.
To put this into perspective, of the millions of golfers out there, only 125 of them are good enough to be considered PGA Tour Card carrying golfers. You don’t have to know much about golf to know that this is a pretty elite group of individuals. These golfers are truly the best of the best and yet 90% of the time they aren’t performing at the level they believe they are capable.
Yet even with such a high rate of imperfection any pro will tell you that to be successful in the game of golf it’s not about what you do on your last shot- but rather what you do on your next shot.
If you are like many “recovering perfectionists” out there then those statistics probably mean something to you. We are all striving to be perfect in our businesses and in our lives. We practice, train and are coached to be at our very best to meet the most challenging moments in business and in life, but guess what? Things don’t always go perfectly. In fact many times things go completely the opposite of perfect. It’s how we respond to those non-perfect performances that truly separates high performers from everybody else.
Think about the last time you accomplished something really amazing. Now ask yourself: Did everything go perfectly on your route to success? What were the challenges you faced? How did you create success in spite of your imperfect actions and responses to those obstacles? What lessons did you learn during the process? How are you applying those lessons today.
The bad news for all of us is that no matter how much we practice or prepare, we aren’t perfect. The good news is even in our imperfection we have a choice:
Beat yourself up or huff and puff when things do work out. Or leave the last shot in the past and focus on your next move. You can “I should have done this, or should have done that” over and over again. Or you can choose to learn the lesson, sometimes the same lesson over and over again until you finally master it.
The reality is, that in your business you are not paid for perfection- you are paid for results. So when you are getting a good result even when things don’t go perfectly, avoid the need to beat up yourself or your team. Instead leave the past in the past, learn the lesson, apply the learning and most of all focus on your next shot.
After all golf is a game that can’t be won, it’s only played. Some days we play well, some days we can’t find the fairway. The most important thing in golf and in life is to keep moving the ball forward, keep moving closer and closer to your desired goal, and above all- leave the your last shot in the past, focus on where you are now and prepare yourself for the next shot.
And remember there is an 87-93% chance that it won’t be perfect!
Cheers to your success
One Imperfect Quarter Turn at a Time!
Thoughts for the week:
Perfectionism is just an excuse for self-criticism. Unknown
In business perfection is the enemy of profitability.- Mark Cuban
Don’t aim for perfection. Aim for better than yesterday. – Izey Odaise
When perfectionism is driving us, shame is riding shotgun and fear is that annoying backseat driver! – Brene Brown
Perfectionism is not a quest for the best. It is the pursuit of the worst in ourselves. The part that tells us nothing we do will ever be good enough. That we should try again.- Julia Cameron
Strive for continuous improvement instead of perfection. – Kim Collins
Excellence is value. Perfection is insecurity. – Unknown
A perfectionist pardons every mistake but his own. –Unknown
You aren’t paid for perfection, you are paid for results. –Coach Tim