Excellence in All Tasks

Posted: 3rd August 2010 by Glenda (and Jack) in motivation
Tags: ,


“Doing a thing well is often a waste of time.” – Robert Byrne

How can anyone say this? What about the adage that we all grew up with, “if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing right.” How can you say it’s a waste of time to do something right?

That’s not what the quote said. It said, “is often a waste of time.” Think about it. For everything you do in life, should it require an excellence and exactness to be called doing it right? A silly example but let’s discuss laundry. I’m very particular about laundry, and we won’t talk about how I separate and determine washer and dryer settings and which products to use, etc. I actually do that by rote. But what about the putting away of the laundry? It is true that I like all the towels folded the same way, but should I get out of sorts if someone else doesn’t fold them that way so that my towel cabinet looks horrid when you open that cabinet door? Should I take extra time to make sure all the towels are folded to the exact same degree and have no edges showing? Should I tie a coordinating ribbon around towel and sheet sets like I saw in a Martha Stewart column one day? How much time and focus in life should your towels inside a cabinet deserve?

The towel example is rather silly but the point is, some jobs need to be done. Get them over with. Call it quits. Go on to things in life that count more in the whole scheme of life: a task that will get you a promotion, more time to play with the kids, perfecting your tennis back hand, or studying for a test.

This reminds me of the movie, Sleeping with the Enemy, with Julia Roberts. In the movie, her husband was so exacting that every thing in life, including how cans were lined up in the cabinet had to be 100% perfect according to his standards. Right. Everything in life does not have to be done well.

(Should you do your best on everything or pick and choose? Please leave a comment.)


~ Glenda