Why Not Just Be Perfect?
thinking of writing a self-help book called Why
Not Just Be Perfect?, which would explain that the toll of feeling bad
about all kinds of stuff adds up over time, causing depression and anxiety.
Why not be done with all of this, and simply become perfect, so that there's
nothing to feel bad about?
In the best self-help tradition, the things I feel bad about most often are health-related things:
Why not just be perfect, and stop all this? I could become a teetotalling parsimonious eater of Vegan snacks.
Why not be perfectly parsimonious, get rid of the TV, read only great books?
I harm others with my materialistic lifestyle:
So why can't I fix all these problems, and just be perfect?
For two reasons. I have only so much discipline, and try to budget it
for the things that matter, like writing this essay, doing my part around
the house, putting in enough hours at work, writing music, helping my
fellow artists. Second, there have been periods in my life when I've tried
to keep up with the paperwork on my desk: bills, reconciliation of health-insurance
claims, proxy statements, Web page updates, etc., and I found that this
is a bottomless pit. I could spend my whole life being perfect in this
one petty way, and I'd never have time for the things that matter to me.
Doing all the little things perfectly, erasing the lists above and the
others like them, is like this. It would take my whole life. Who doesn't
know someone who's obsessive about all the little details, and who never
does anything substantial?
Copyright © 2000 - 2008 by Dean Wallraff. All rights reserved.