This is a direct quote from Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way and it’s so true! I want to emblazon this into the brain of every client, student (and child) I’ve ever had:
Usually, when we say we can’t do something, what we mean is that we won’t do something unless we can guarantee that we’ll do it perfectly (121).
She suggests completing this sentence: If I didn’t have to do it perfectly, I would try……
In other words, I think we squash our creative impulse because we suspect it won’t be a glorious success. In the case of students, at times they focus so much on getting the high grade (the superficial payment) that they don’t risk trying something untried. Then again, there are those who simply want to slap down something, at the last minute. But they have the same fear. If I just turn in “whatever”, I am not exposing myself to real criticism…it’s obvious this is not close to my best effort.
Think of every project as work in progress. It will never be truly perfect, but it can be wonderful and each time we put effort into a project, we’re becoming more human.