I peeled back the vinyl thinking "this is it! The moment I've been waiting for!" But what met my gaze did not fill me with excitement. It filled me with disappointment. Why? Because it wasn't perfect.
Raise your hand if you've been here. You studied really hard for that test, and because you made a few mistakes, your final semester grade dropped from an A to a B. Or you've put in a lot of heart, time, and energy into a project and in the end, it didn't look exactly like what you had in mind. This is what happened to me with the farmhouse sign above.
It was my first farmhouse sign. I was so excited I had finally figured out how to make them and had the equipment to get started. So I went out and bought all the materials for the project. (Now, if you've practiced this, you could totally get this sign done in two days. But, with it being my first one and since I'm human and have other priorities, it took me a month. Crazy, I know.) After some mess ups, glue that didn't stick, and a few other trips to the store, I was finally ready to put on the vinyl and spray on the letters! But then the frustration hit. I wasn't prepared for the vinyl to be SO sticky! The moment I pulled it off the paper, it tried to wrap around and stick to itself, which caused some of my letters to rip and caused the application process to be a GREAT PAIN. Applying the vinyl should have take 10 minutes! But again, not for me. After fighting this beast for an hour, I finally had it on the wood: not very flat, filled with many bubbles and a couple of holes. But I was NOT touching it again! So I painted the words and let it dry till the next day.
I was so excited to FINALLY see my masterpiece! I peeled back the vinyl, full of excitement, but as soon as I saw the letters, disappointment filled my heart. "It's not perfect" I heard run through my head. "You couldn't sell THAT in a store", "the letters aren't crisp and clean cut", "you mise as well forget about making signs because you spent so much time on this and it's not presentable." All these lies and hurtful thoughts flew through my mind and I knew I had a decision to make.
I could either believe the lies of Perfectionism and let them tear me down and push me to give up, or I could accept the fact that it was my first sign and it wasn't perfect. I took a deep breath, lifted my head and said "It's alright. You'll do better on the next one" and pushed those lies out of my head. Was I still disappointed? Yes, but I didn't let it defeat me.
I don't know what big dreams you're chasing or what goals you're striving after right now. Maybe you're a wood worker starting a new project, an interior designer with a tight deadline, a bride planning your wedding, or a creative entrepreneur trying to start your first business. My advice to you?
DON'T. GIVE. UP.
I know today's society pushes perfectionism right in our faces. But can I tell you a secret? It's not possible. "What?!" That's right. Perfectionism is not possible. We will always mess up on something as we make our way throughout our day. Why? Because this world is broken and we are sinful human beings. The only perfect person to walk this earth was Christ and He was, is, and will be perfect so that we don't have to be.
Every time I walk through the front door and see this sign in the hallway, I am filled with joy and am proud of myself. It may not be perfect, but I didn't let Perfectionism stop me. This sign isn't just a cute sign to me. It's a symbol that signifies a battle I have won!
Don't give up on your dreams. Don't stop trying because it didn't turn out perfect the first time, or the fifth time, or the one-hundredth time. No matter what, Keep. Moving. Forward!
I hope this post has encouraged you as much as the experience has encouraged me.
Until Next Time,
|| Taylor K. Marie Rohrer ||