On not being perfect


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If ever there was proof that teachers need their 6 week holiday in the summer, this must be it. We spend the rest of the year encouraging and convincing our students to try new things, learn new skills, just have a go, never say ‘I can’t.’ But how often do we put this into practice ourselves?
So far this summer, I have crocheted and lined a little bag, crafted a birthday card, made a cool necklace using pages from an old book –

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I have even started writing a novel, and now I have managed to upcycle an old oak writing bureau that I bought for £45 in a secondhand furniture shop.
I have this terrible condition which I think must be a symptom of a warped kind of perfectionism where I am so fearful of making a hash of anything I try to do that I just don’t do it. I come up with the idea, I research it for hours, I may even then embark on it, but the house just ends up full of unfinished projects. I think it’s because I know that they won’t live up to my expectations so it’s a way of delaying failure. The best thing that has happened to me this year is my acceptance that things don’t have to be perfect. That there is pleasure just in the doing, but I need to acknowledge that concluding and signing off are also critical. Applying that to the novel will be interesting!

A post on how I went about upcycling the writing bureau will follow soon with links to sites that I gleaned helpful information as well as inspiration from!
This is how it started – check in in a couple of days to see how it has ended up!

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4 Comments

Filed under 3 Good Things, craft, life in the slow lane

4 responses to “On not being perfect

  1. skylark

    This post hit home with me. I have notebooks FULL of ideas of things I want to make, and boxes full of unfinished projects. And I think the reason for me never finishing things is having other people see and judge them. Ridiculous, as I know they’ll be pretty good…but there’s just that worry that other people will ‘say’ they’re amazing but what if they’re ‘actually’ thinking ‘what did she make THAT for’. I need to get over myself! Anyway, just commenting as I’d just seen your upcycled bureau. You definitely need to see more projects through 🙂 x

    • Michelle

      I wonder how many of us there are out there, all fearing others’ judgement, instead of just getting on with enjoying our making and creating for our own sheer pleasure?! I glanced at your blog, btw, and love your painted pebbles – you really are talented, and should have no shame about your pieces! Thank you so much for your kind and affirming comments…I feel we should now egg each other on!

      • skylark

        I need to learn how to use wordpress before I can egg you on…have only just found your reply…didn’t realise I had a notifications tab 🙂

  2. Love, love, love this post. Perfection, expectations, ‘delaying failure’… beautifully written.

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