Pursuing Imperfection

Do blogs need start with thesis statements?

Are you supposed to lay out purpose and a driving philosophy?

A five-year plan for weekly updates on this, and monthly summaries of that?

I sure hope not.

80% of most things can be skipped – including this post.

If I waited until I knew exactly what I wanted to say here, if I waited to make a promise until I knew for sure I’d be able to keep it, I would never be able to begin in the first place.

I’ve caught myself in that trap plenty of times before. Heck, this isn’t the first time I’ve tried to start a blog! I never want to share things that aren’t done, that I’m not certain will work exactly how I want them to. It is, I think, a common trait among Venn diagram bubble slices I inhabit – engineers, of course, and writers, and the shy and anxious.

Engineers, of course, have good reason to want to be sure things will work correctly – even when there isn’t someone’s safety or an expansive development budget on the line, your reputation and to some degree your career is, every time you bring something new into existence. It has to work, or else you’ve wasted your employer’s money, or your co-workers time, or…

But it’s rare that you have time to cross every single T and dot every last I, and the job has to be done sometime. So you try to put your efforts on the part that makes the most difference and aim for good enough. We call it the 80-20 rule, or the Pareto Principle, or if we have literary pretensions, we quote Voltaire – “Perfect is the enemy of good.”

My own favorite version of that sentiment is actually, “Better is the enemy of good enough.” What I want is for the things I create to be good enough, and to be shared – without getting too wrapped up in what “good enough to be shared,” might mean. I want to learn to give things an appropriate amount of effort, and to stick with them for an appropriate amount of time.

Which got me thinking…

I tried to spend an appropriate amount of time thinking about how blogs start. I’m sure I missed a few things, of course. I bet that if I knew exactly what I wanted out of life (or even just this site) I could start this blog off better. I mean, think about it – if I put together just twenty-one posts in advance, I could promise to post every other week at a minimum, and have a whole year of successful blogging ahead of me.

But I’m about 85% sure that a blog really just needs to have a post to begin.

So, this isn’t the perfect way to start my writing blog or start building a following as a writer. This isn’t the best way to launch a site to curate my crafting projects. This doesn’t represent a clean break from my old Facebook account, where I’ve previously shared my thoughts but also gotten stuck in far too many weird little ruts and rabbit-holes and second-guessed myself into silence because maybe the thing I want to say isn’t what any of my friends will want to see on their walls.

The 20% you should read:

This site is intended to be where I shout into the void about things I’m making and doing and loving in life. Where I go to deliberately put my imperfect creations on display and talk about my flawed little life.

I will never be the best there is at anything I do. The things I make will never be the best version of themselves they could possibly have been. There will always be a way they could have been improved, a lesson I should have learned sooner, a more perfect perspective to experience them with.

But if things go well, I will have done those things, and I will have shared them with you.

I hope you’ll agree, dear void, that that is good enough.

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