Should you do whatever it takes to perfect something you’re doing? Should you take the time to perfect your craft, your product, or the service that you’re providing? Should you invest the extra time and energy needed to achieve perfection? Is it worth it?
No, it’s never worth it. You should never pursue perfection. You should strive for excellence. Perfection is the enemy of excellence. You will sacrifice excellence in the pursuit of perfection. I see this principle played out in ministry every day. How long will it take you to prepare a teaching? How will you perfect it? Once you pass the point of excellence, every minute spent preparing it will bring you no closer to it being better. You’ll just waste the time and energy. Perfection is impossible to attain. This principle is especially true when it comes to the creative arts.
A flaw in the arts is the heartache of the artist. However, I assure you, the overwhelming majority of us will never notice. The key that was off, the text that was slightly shifted, the color that wasn’t the shade you quite wanted, it’s irrelevant in the long run. Excellence is being as efficient as possible, frequently, that involves having to abandon projects when they’re good or very good. Teachings are never completed, they’re abandoned. In the same way, projects that we work on will never be perfect, but at some point we have to figure out whether that extra hour of work will benefit the project, or just be mostly wasted away.
Do you sacrifice excellence in the pursuit of perfection?