The other day I was taking a course by a really really really popular self-help guru. I’m talking multi-millionaire, NY Times bestselling author, interviews with Oprah type of popular. This guy is the real deal. The course was amazing and it was full of great advice. There were 90 solid minutes of good content and great business advice. I was impressed and inspired! But then on slide 28, I saw it…. A typo. I had to pause the recording to make sure that it was real. And yep it was. Right there for thousands of people to see. A typo. I have to admit, I gasped a little when I saw it. From one entrepreneur to another, I felt a pang in my own heart just imagining how he must have felt in that moment. But immediately after, I felt a relief so deep that I could almost taste it. I’ll tell you why. Because it was so incredibly comforting to know that people like “that” can make a mistake. By people like “that,” I mean famous people with a team of folks helping them with everything from branding to wardrobe. Beyond that, it comforted me to know that even in the midst of his mistake, (which I am sure he caught while doing the workshop), he still continued on. He didn’t even acknowledge it. He just kept moving, teaching and creating huge impact in my life and everyone else who was on the call. So what’s the big deal, you ask?
Well for me there were a lot of big deals. Let me start by saying this, being an entrepreneur is hard. But the hardest part isn’t hustling for clients or trying to get your social media following up. Its putting yourself out there day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year. Every time you press “publish” or “send” or “load”, or invite someone into your space, you are opening yourself up for both praise and scrutiny. There’s a constant fear of getting it wrong or making a mistake. Now most times those fears are completely unfounded and nothing happens. But sometimes they do happen. And you can imagine that one of the worst things that can happen is making a huge public mistake like a typo. You wonder if making that mistake will make people see you as unprofessional or amateur. You feel embarrassed, and exposed, and quite honestly it sucks. What I have learned though, is that executing with excellence and pursuing perfection or two very different things. Excellence isn’t always perfect. If you ask me, excellence is in the content, in the heart, in the practicality and sometimes even in the mistakes. Most times when I am hung up on making things perfect, I am not nearly as authentic as I want to be. In the pursuit of perfection, it’s easy to lose your personality and your point. Truthfully, the most brilliant words pour through me when I am not editing as I go…but simply letting the message I want to give the world--- come. (Just to be clear, a good proofread never hurt anybody though lol).
Oftentimes we are afraid to make mistakes because we fear that the world will judge us as harshly as we judge ourselves. But let me ask you this…is your value diminished by your inability to be perfect all the time? Tough question, I know.
There will be times when you give your best, but still find a tiny mistake anyway. That goes for business and every other area of your life. Know that your excellence is not compromised by it. Don’t beat yourself up. Because the truth is, the fact that you had the courage to put yourself out there was the hard part. Forgive yourself if things aren’t perfect. Give the world the best you have and keep doing it day in and day out. That’s the true definition of a hero. So, shout out to all of my fear-less women, brave enough to step up and step out EVERY DAMN DAY, even when they know a mistake or two is inevitable. Typos aren't the end of the world, sometimes they are the unfortunate remnants of courage....