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The Drawbacks of Pursuing Perfection

Imagine you’ve set your heart on self-improvement. You mean well with every trick and new habit you try. Unfortunately, one common mentality can delay enacting the change you want to see: the belief that a situation or timing needs to be “perfect” before you can proceed to your next step. Of course, we all want to leave a positive impression at our next big presentation or make the icing on our daughter’s birthday cake just-so. But sometimes, it’s not realistic to seek perfection in every one of your pursuits.

Consider these three ways a strict “perfection-only” policy can, in fact, limit your future growth and security:

  • No Perfect Time: Some of us have convinced ourselves that right now is not the time to save money. You may think you need to wait for a bonus, or bigger payday, to start building your retirement, or even your emergency fund. Unfortunately, the time spent waiting for the Big Day could have been time spent, not spending! Many people, after challenging themselves, find in fact they can find extra room in their budgets by adjusting their daily habits, from energy consumption to meal prep. Consider asking friends and family for their tips on how to make daily saving simple and doable. In the end, you won’t regret an amount saved in an emergency, no matter how small!
  • Adjust as You Go: Just because we do something imperfectly the first time, doesn’t mean we’re doomed to make the same mistake twice. Don’t lament if your budget isn’t working the way you expected, or you unwittingly spent more on your credit card than you intended this month. Instead, take a deep breath, and have confidence you can and will not only make a better budget, but you will also train your brain to emphasize necessity over splurge spending. And when something doesn’t work for you the first time, don’t freeze up! These are not “mistakes.” Rather, they are lessons at creating the path that best works for you.
  • Balance Isn’t a Perfect Process: Even though we may all dream of professional and financial growth, we may also fear the changes in schedule and uncertainty that often come with taking on a new pursuit. Don’t limit yourself from taking a professional or personal leap, just because you don’t know if you can handle the additions to your life flawlessly! Consider pursuing the more aggressive savings plan or that second career you have been hesitating to add to your plate. Have faith you can acclimate and excel.

There is no one right way to achieve success. No matter how “perfect” our plans may seem, we’ll still most likely need to continually adjust our spending and saving along the way. If we are willing to actively participate in our finances, without the strict need to achieve perfection, we can potentially experience not only the growth we want, but also the peace of mind.

To learn more ways to improve your financial life, visit the Syncis blog at