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img_3768(By the way, the picture is from a PebbleStorm Treasure Map Hike on Sunday in LA…hence the eyepatch!).

Below is an excerpt from an email I sent to the PebbleStorm group going through the “Come Play With Us” program.  I’m posting it for two reasons: to practice non-perfectionism (is that a word?), and to declare that I’m on a kick to let go of perfectionism, which is an  Enjoyment Enemy. Besides creating unneeded pressure, it just gets in the way of progress.  Ever heard the term “perfection is procrastination”?

“Perfectionism spells paralysis.”
— Winston Churchill

I, we, can’t be enjoying ourselves fully if we’re worrying about things being ‘perfect’.  How often does being perfect get in your way, either in life or work?

I’ve let go of a lot of perfectionism over the past couple of years (my father might say I never had it, after so many years of seeing messy rooms 🙂 ).  I didn’t even see it until recently, when I started helping people overcome their own perfectionism, both the progress that I’d made and how much farther I have to go.

When you’re in your own room for a long time, you get used to the dirt. Also, when your room is really dirty, a little more dirt doesn’t show up.  You see things in a new light when you visit a neighbor’s room. And when you leave your neighbor’s room, you carry a new perspective with you back to your room.  Seeing others’ perfectionism has made me more aware of my own, and how it gets in the way of enjoyment. It’s a new smudge to be aware of and let go of.  My room’s getting cleaner, so smaller smudges become much more obvious.  Of course, the room never(?) gets perfectly clean… there’s always another smudge to clean…

Hey, there’s a perfectionism lesson even here, in that we, to be happy, have to be accepting of having smudges, even as we work to clean them up!  ‘Cuz they’ll never completely go away.

Before I move on, here are a couple of ways I manage my perfectionism…throwing rocks, as I described in “Using rocks & babysteps to dodge the fear“, and “bursting” as I wrote about in the “Big Aaron Update…Bursting…

[UPDATED] When perfectionism can be useful

Like anything in life, perfectionism can be helpful or hurtful, depending on your relationship with it.  When it prevents you from getting started or from finishing things, it’s an enemy!  When it can help you complete a project in a way that delivers an amazing experience, it can actually be a friend.  The key is noticing how it affects you, so that you can avoid getting trapped by it and instead can use it to help you with your goals.

———————————-

Hi everyone!

1) Teams Update
[yadda yadda yadda…]

2) Some great enhancement ideas from my 8p call tonight  (Thank you Jim Belden, Onna and Erin Halling!!):
i. A 1 day game” babystep.
Erin Halling had a great idea to make it simpler to practice the “Play” concepts!  The example she used was to create a game out of moving, in which she’d win by finishing moving by a certain time, and an example rule would be having to stop to jump around and be silly every 2 hours 🙂  More to come…
Reminder  – have fun with thinking of games, there is no reason to be ‘perfect’ here. Perfect is NOT fun – messy is fun!

ii. A Serendipity Board that lists the games and players, as they’re created. Thank you Onna!!!  Here’s an example from a local open house event we held last year:
http://pebblestorm.com/2008/09/08/a-serendipity-board/

iii. A “Design Your Game” template,
that will be created as I work with the first few people in creating some games.  Thank you Onna!!!

iv. A “Meet Your PebbleStormers” call on the Wednesday between webinars, to give a chance for people who want to meet and connect with more people to do so (anyone have suggestions for icebreakers?).  Thank you Erin!!

3) Lastly  – I’m asking for help (and will continue to)
Whew!  By the way – I can see that there’s no way I’ll be able to create all this, and the other ideas that will come up, by myself (I can’t do it all myself – mental note).  Anyone interested in helping me with any particular pebble(s), in addition to Erin and Onna?   Or ones you might think of but I don’t have here?  You know it’d be fun to do together!!

My own perfectionism & ego
I have a hard time asking for help, which is related to both own perfectionism and ego (I don’t like looking bad as much as the next person).  I’m going to keep letting this go, and will appreciate your support in doing it!   Perfectionism is one of the worst enemies of PebbleStorm and enjoyment, and one I’m going to be paying attention to in myself, so that I can help others avoid it too.

🙂

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I just did a blog post for Genius.com touching on making money through enjoyment, leadgen and “Seeds, Nets & Spears”, ColdCalling2.com, and more…

Today I ask five questions of Aaron Ross. Aaron is an original and was one of the original sales guys at salesforce.com. While at salesforce.com, he invented
Cold Calling 2.0 for his inside sales team that sourced $100 million in recurring revenue. Aaron Ross founded PebbleStorm to help people and CEOs “make money through enjoyment.” Prior to founding PebbleStorm, Aaron Ross was an EIR (Entrepreneur-in-Residence) at Alloy Ventures, a venture capital firm with over $1 billion under management. He is an Ironman triathlete, graduate of the Boulder Outdoor Survival School, and volunteer mentor at SCORE, “Counselors to America’s Small Business.”

As usual, Aaron has his hands in a lot of things.

PT: Aaron, you’re a busy guy with a lot of eclectic interests. What’s holding your attention these days?

AR: Great question! I can see how it appears to be an eclectic mix of projects and interests: sketching/art, CEO flow, having fun with work, travel, sales consulting / creating predictable revenue, self-managing teams, the 4-hour work week… However, everything I do and even how I live is ALL a part of PebbleStorm and helping people “make money through enjoyment”.
Work doesn’t have to be hard – we just make it hard on ourselves for no good reason. My mission is to help people and organizations unlock their “Unique Genius” and help them make work fun, more profitable and deeply gratifying (an example note I received when I launched said “Thanks for making the world more of the place I want to live”.)

With the economic turmoil, you’re seeing people finally waking up after being asleep in their careers for years or decades. Many have been plodding along making money and, meanwhile, forgetting their dreams. You can stand it while you thought it’d bring security…but that ended up being illusory. I recently wrote a blog post (“Using the Economic Trouble to Your Advantage”) on how the recession will be good for us in the long-term, because it’s forcing our economy to detox of bad habits and is getting people, many of whom have been asleep at the wheel of their work lives, to finally take a hard look at what they want to do with their lives.

So what the heck does all this have to do with my work in sales and creating predictable revenue? Well, “Make money through enjoyment” includes the phrase ‘make money’, and it’s hard to enjoy what you do if your revenue or income isn’t very predictable!

PT: You have an interesting way of categorizing types of leads: “Seeds”, “Nets” and “Spears”. Can you tell us more about these differences and why these are important?

…continue on for the full post on Genius.com: 5 Questions with Aaron Ross: How to Make $ and the Most Out of Life!

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