Good enough for now


Dear little sister,

I had an epiphany yesterday. Did you ever notice how powerful the phrase "good enough for now” is? 

Think of this little blog. We had an idea that we wanted to blog together on Monday evening, and here we are, less than a week later, up, running and posting. Is our blog independently hosted with all power in our hands (definitely not. Hello blogger), beautifully custom designed (nope, hello free blogger theme) or perfect in every way? No, no, and no. But it doesn’t matter, because there will be time for those later when we have identified which of these are actually important, and in the meantime we will have written scores of blog posts on this “good enough for now” solution, and in the end, the content is what makes or breaks a blog, isn’t it?

It’s so easy to come up with a good idea, and promptly get sidetracked by something that seems like a requirement but isn’t really. We’ve all been there, I'm sure: “I can’t go running, I need to buy new shoe first.” or “I can’t make bread, I need an original wholegrain sourdough starter from my auntie twice removed first” or “I’ll get into photography when I can afford a big, fancy camera."  It’s spending weeks on minor design details and beautiful instagram widgets for a blog that only ever sees two posts. It is, as Anthony so nicely said, taking the wrong first step.

I think it often seems important because we see successful people doing it. Big bloggers host their own blogs, successful athletes wear new shoes, and bakers rave about their sourdough starter. We look at them and conclude that we need all these things too, to even stand a chance to replicate their success. Or maybe just that it will be easier to replicate their success once we have them. Sometimes, getting the thing does no harm but often enough, what we perceive as the important first step is really just a decoration that has a bad habit of distracting us from what is truly important. We end up accumulating the trappings of success, instead of working towards it. The true goal is something very different, and usually something that can’t be bought. A bloggers success is his readership, an athletes her fitness and a photographers her skills with light and image composition.

Instead, what if we went with a “good enough for now” approach, that actually allows us to take a first step towards our goal? It encourages us to ask “What is it that I really want to accomplish, and how do I do that with the minimum amount of effort?”. Pulling out the old trainers, and going for a run will make me a little fitter. Trying out the instructions on photo composition from a youtube video, using my phone camera, makes me a better photographer. And putting a free template on a free blogger blog means we are busy writing letters posts to each other after a couple of days. That's further than most ideas ever get! 

Maybe one day we will outgrow this blog, and then we can figure out how to host one using wordpress, or who might make us a fully responsive blog design. There will come a point when this will be the important next step, and totally worth investing time and effort into. Until then, here is to imperfect solutions that do 90 % of the job for 10 % of the effort. Everything else will come later.  

All the very best,

PS: Thanks for reminding me to stop obsessing about the dotted line in the recent posts widget, and actually write you a letter…. 

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