What’s better than perfection?
Nothing in life is perfect—we know that. But we seem fixated on the idea that it should. Our obsession with the ideal and complete may be keeping us from appreciating the inherent beauty that lies within the organic and unpredictable.
It feels like we’ve been looking for perfection since forever. We favor the clean, the shiny, and the symmetrical just like we seek for definitions, formulas, and frameworks. It’s the human thing to do. Ironically enough, perfect is not human at all.
Perfection assumes processes can always get to a final outcome. In other words, it implies there’s an ultimate solution for any situation. Which is as absurd as it sounds. Everything in life shows a bit of nuance and unpredictability. Therefore, perfection, as a concept, is inherently unnatural; but it’s also arbitrary. Let me elaborate.
What are the standards for perfection? Straight lines, smooth finishes, and Helvetica aren’t exactly neutral, let alone perfect. Life doesn’t follow grids or formulas. Nothing is ever solid black or pure white. Nature couldn’t care less about Bauhaus or whatever some white dude said mid-20th century. All efforts to define what flawlessness and excellence look like are culturally biased. It’s impossible to take everything and everyone ever into consideration.
Attempting to describe perfection is futile—it’s fighting against the natural, background-diverse, and innovative. We should instead embrace the ever-changing, unpredictable, and organic because that’s what fills our identities and our craft with character and authenticity.
I’m not saying we should forget science and honor ignorance but that we humans (who actually exist, as opposed to marketing personas or movie characters) aren’t completely rational 100% of the time, so we should stop pretending like we are.
Will we ever let go of our fear of being wrong, losing control, and getting old?
Embracing the ephemeral and entropic nature of the universe lets us unlock the unique story only our individual experiences behold. And that, in itself, is as perfect as it gets.