Voltaire’s poem La Bégueule starts:
Dans ses écrits, un sage Italien dit que le mieux est l’ennemi du bien.”
In his writings, a wise Italian says that the best is the enemy of the good”
Maybe you’ve noticed while hosting a holiday gathering, pleasing a client, or planning a wedding, 80% of the work can be done in 20% of the time. Then the last 20% of the to-do list seemingly takes forever. You’re feeling pretty good once you have the venue, date, guests, food, etc. But uh-oh … now the minutiae rear their ugly, unimportant heads – the napkin colors and song lists and seating chart (don’t-forget-to put-aunt-millie-away-from-cousin-zeke). Most of us forge ahead to the point of exhaustion, pulling out our hair as we crawl through that last 20% (then we wonder why we didn’t just do a gorgeous destination wedding on a beach somewhere, like Emily did … )
Timeout. If we’ve addressed the most important things, why can’t we stop there and be happy with our pretty amazing accomplishment? The question is this: how far beyond 80% should we go?
Now more than ever, achieving absolute perfection in entertaining-parenting-organizing-cooking-baking-crafting-eating-vacationing-decorating is tempting. After all, if you look on Facebook and Pinterest, clearly EVERYONE ELSE is achieving perfection, right?!? Get real, it’s impossible. (Who ARE these people?)
Being very good at things that are important to you is quite possible. You can even be fabulous, fantastic, amazing and awesome. Forget perfect. Maybe you can’t read a book every day, but you can read one a month. Maybe you can’t always bake your bread from scratch, but you can find a really good bakery. Maybe you can’t grow all of your own food, but you can find a great CSA. Maybe you can’t write a novel, but you can blog … and then use the time and headache you’ve saved from striving for perfect to relax and be happy.
We’re not saying we want to strive for mediocrity. We’re not asking, “why bother?” but rather, “why worry about being perfect?” We definitely want to be really good, just maybe not at everything.
Yes, Laura and Em are seeking their version of Goldilocks’ “just right,” because somewhere between indifference and perfectionism is a happy place where a modern mom can enjoy the good life.
We hope you’ll join us on our journey! Namaste and all that jazz.
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