May 14, 2009

Day 10 New Friend- Good Enough

It is only 1:00p.m. in the afternoon and twice now the term “good enough” has come up. Once when I was trying to respond to a comment on the blog (YEAH for those who left comments on the blog. I LOVE YOU!), and another time when my friend Matthias asked me if I was using the “good enough” model of housekeeping in regards to yesterdays blog entry. I am not sure what he meant by this, but the fact that this idea of “good enough” has come up twice today...well that is “good enough” for me to know that it is what I am meant to focus on. I will use it as the inspiration for the question in 12 days journal #31 which I will send out into the world today, once I have found my stranger of course. But I am not sure how to word the question. What is it about “good enough” that pulls at me today? “Good enough” means many things to me. There is the way in which I am reminded that I AM good enough, just as I am, and that this is true for everyone around me. That there is no need to fill my mind with toxic thoughts of my thighs being too big, or my work not bringing in enough pay, or my way of living being too...something. That who and what I am is perfection in this moment, and that I can choose to celebrate what I am or nitpick it, neither changes what I am . Then there is the ”good enough“ when it comes to my day to day doings. If I decide to clean the kitchen and set myself an impossible standard, I go in conspiring towards my own failure, especially if I have time restraints, which is almost always. If I go in with the idea of ”good enough“, as in I will clean for the 15 minutes I have and the results will be ”good enough“, I am conspiring towards my own success. If I set myself an impossible standard that I cannot achieve, I generally don’t even try. Where as if I accept that what I can do is ”good enough“ and do just that, I am further along than if I never started, no matter how much I do. Since I have been home I have been worrying that my stranger encounters were not ”good enough“. The conversations have been fairly limited, the encounters a little forced. Not only were all these meetings ”good enough“, I am also forgetting to consider how these meetings effected the strangers I met. I realized my idea of ”good enough“ are often based in instant gratification, how the meeting went, rather than the out fall, or long term implications. Who knows, perhaps one of my strangers put the journal in their front pocket then in some freak circumstance it deflected a stray bullet which would have taken their life! Now that would make a great blog entry...but for now this one is ”good enough“.

And so in the spirit of ”good enough“ today’s question reads simply, “Are you good enough?”. Also in the spirit of “good enough” I am simply leaving this journal here in Sidewinders, a local cafe where I often come if I am away from home to use their internet connection to send these entries. Here I had a simple, lovely conversation with a womyn who I have seen round town but have never talked to. We spoke of the snow which fell this morning. How snow this time of year can get people so riled up but that it is merely an illusion as it melts as quickly as it falls. This simple but beyond the superficial conversation could easily be the beginning of a friendship, or we may never speak again, either way it is as it should be, either way it “good enough“.


  1. Ha. Just the other day I was listening to a scientific report on ants. And the big discovery that this scientist had made was that when ants go looking for a new nest they send out "scouts" who roam around until they find a place that meets their baseline requirements, and then return to the group and report, waving their antennae or dancing or whatever they do. The point was they don't visit other sites and compare, presumably they are unable to do this, but they simply settle on a place that is "good enough". This must save a lot of time and energy. I contrast this with my life and others and I see I spend enormous amount of time comparing and speculating and often get very little actually done. Now, of course there are benefits to the comparison method and striving for ultimate success, but there is also a place for the "good enough" way of doing things. I've particularly noticed this in relationships in the last few years. I find so many women so delightful how could I settle on just one? The result is I have been on my own for quite a while. Not that there is anything particularly wrong with that but I see my energy and attention might be more constructively directed to one relationship that works rather than speculating how a dozen different ones might work. Apart from that, my housecleaning is always "good enough"!

  2. Good post anthony. I think you have really touched on something there. I find that if I don't know how to do something or that if I am not the "best" at something I will hesitate in doing it. I have an aversion to being "good enough". That has limited so many of my experiences because I have been too afraid to try something new in the event that I might fail. So now I am trying new things on even if they scare dancing at Jus Dance. It scares me, and I feel totally alive when I do it. When I see someone who can really shake it, I work to celebrate their skill instead of berating my lack in that area. Don't berate...celebrate!!!

  3. Oh and by the way, Magdelene, this post was great, good and certainly good enough.

  4. There is a Buddhist warning about the 3 P's

    Perfection leads to
    Procrastination, and eventually

    The concept of perfection is only in our minds.
    Yes, everything is "perfect" in the sense that it is what it is (but we don't need a word for that).
    As soon as we start playing with this illusion of perfection, our concept of Good Enough enters fantasy land.

    To me, Good Enough is a relative, personal statement, invoking comparison, it is an unfinished statement. Good enough for what, who, how, when?

    I like:
    "Do Your Best"
    The hard part is that our best is always changing, & we are balancing a diversity of "goals."

    plenty of times, i think the "Best" call is doing something a bit more half-assed, where more would be a waste of energy. (As long as it's best practices at work, and not my lazy ego...)

    When we are fully present, it's easier to see the most appropriate things to do.
    We can be at peace with this moment, free from the mind's judgement of what is good enough.

    Our heart is always our compass.

    Good Enough sounds like a temporary truce between the Head and the Heart.

    Ok, that was Enough Good rambling...

    keep dancing Chris!!

  5. I love what everyone else here has said about this! Thank you, everyone, for sharing. :-)

    I'm going to go with the very first thing that popped into my head when confronted with the question:

    I am good. And that IS enough.