As much as we desire for everything in our lives to be perfect, perfection doesn’t exist.  Not really.   However, perfection can be found in little things if you really think about it.  Watching a baby or small child sleeping peacefully, seeing a beautiful sunrise or sunset, seeing the full moon shimmering on a clear night with all the twinkling stars, stopping to admire a vast array of flowers blooming in the spring, or taking in the wondrous beauty of the colors of fall.  While we will never truly attain perfection for ourselves, at least we can admire perfection around us.

Once upon a time, I was a perfectionist.  My house was always company-ready with everything in its place, shelves and tchotchke’s dusted, floors vacuumed or swept.  Enter into the picture a hubby who leaves things randomly laying around, kicks his shoes off and leaves them in the middle of the floor, piles his dirty clothes on his side of the bed, and leaves cupboard doors and drawers open in his wake.  Then enter a Princess Nagger who takes after her Dada.  Human tornado activity times two.

I had to resign my perfectionist ways or end up losing my sanity.

Some things still have that ‘perfectionist’ stamp on them, like the spice cupboard neat and orderly with the spices in alphabetical order, and the pantry the same way (though that would probably be considered more OCD than perfectionist).

While I may have been a perfectionist, I have never considered myself perfect.  I am, after all, human.  Or at least last time I checked.  Do I seek perfection?  Maybe in some things.  Like making sure Princess Nagger’s outfit is 99% of the time color coordinated, or cooking up a not-so-perfect meal but making it look perfect when it’s on the plate.  Still not really ‘perfection’, more OCD, I imagine.

Besides, I think perfection in all of us could turn out to be really boring.  No human can truly relate to it, as no human is perfect in every way.  Things which are flawed are much much more interesting because it is more like us – humans make mistakes and accidents happen.  If something was completely the same as everything else, then it would not be as interesting because it lacks uniqueness.

I found a few quotes that sum up ‘perfection’ really well:

“In nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect. Trees can be contorted, bent in weird ways, and they’re still beautiful.”
Alice Walker

“The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself.”
Anna Quindlen

“They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they’d make up their minds.”
Winston Churchill

“Aim at perfection in everything, though in most things it is unattainable. However, they who aim at it, and persevere, will come much nearer to it than those whose laziness and despondency make them give it up as unattainable.”
Lord Chesterfield

Perfection is something most everyone strives for, but can you actually get there?  It’s been said that ‘imperfection is what makes the world perfect’ – but if that’s the case, then why is it that we all try so hard to be perfect?  Is there really an actual ‘perfect’?  Is it possible to actually reach ‘perfection’?

This Imperfect Spin Cycle was brought to you in part by Jen, who’s bloggy friendship is the epitome of perfection, and who is also Sprite’s Keeper.  Stop by and check out the other Spinners and their take on ‘perfection’ – you might find just that perfection you’re looking for!


  1. I am going to make my own dictionary and the word perfection will not be in it. Near-miss will be one word. And are-you-on-something also one word.

  2. I used to be the exact same way – but since I’ve had a child, not so much. Don’t think I’ve even made my bed in the last 14 years unless someone was coming over. The place is still neat but no longer completely immaculate. After 17 years I’ve burned out 🙁

  3. What a great Post girlfriend, but I think Perfection is different things to different people. Perfection to me is the perfection of beauty as my child sleeps. Perfection is the love of a mother for her child. Perfection is friendship, Mom and Dad, the love of your soulmate, but most of all Perfection is my faith in God for he has given me all these things because of His perfect love for me. Have a great day my perfect friend!

  4. Sounds like your hubby is a real mench, otherwise you would have no tolerance for skeevot left in his wake. (the previous sentence is not perfect)
    “Perfection is never tangible, it’s a sense of spirit. It’s what lifts the heart and gives one hope. If it stresses you out, then you’ve missed the point.” – quote by me

  5. I grew up in a household with two working parents, four kids, two dogs and a cat – our house was NEVER clean, much less perfect. And you know what? We grew up to be healthy and happy for the most part and while my memories of my mother are not perfect, they do not include her nagging at us to keep the house spotless.

    So a messy house doesn’t bother me (much – I am becoming a little more anal about it the older I get); Beloved, on the other hand is much like you – both his mother and ex-wife are of the “spotless housekeeper” variety and it’s been hard for him to adjust to my laissez-faire attitude towards housekeeping.

    Oh, well – I’ve adjusted to his inability to sit/stand still for more than 30 seconds at a time and his tendency to finish all of my sentences for me. We’ll live.

  6. perfection is overrated – people should lighten up more
    Thanks for sharing a comment over at my blog

    BTW – the Winston Churchill one is the best IMHO

  7. When I was younger, I spent much more time pursuing perfection than I should have. I found that it really wasn’t worth the effort. I really like the Alice Walker quote … imperfect things are often the most interesting.

  8. I absolutely love the Churchill quote! I used to be that way too, always striving for perfection. I can still be that way sometimes. I need to remind myself to step back and enjoy what I’m doing. You’re linked!

  9. Oh, my lovely, you are perfect. I envy you in so many ways and always have. I love your positivity and dedication and creativity. You are four times the awesome I am and believe me, I’m awesome so I know it.

  10. Aw, you’re perfect in all your OCD ways. 🙂 I tell the kids that it is better to be weird than boring. My boy is a perfectionist and he gets frustrated if he doesn’t get it right. I used to be at home, then life happened. At work, I strived to be. I learned a long time ago…we all make mistakes, just try hard to correct them. BTW, “They” are always contradicting themselves.

  11. Loved your Spin – especially the Churchill quote. Maybe perfection lies in the fact that we hold the ability to be able to change our not-as-OCD-as-you-think lifestyle habits for those we love. A pretty necessary talent, I would say.

  12. I clean the house as good as I have time for once a week and that’s as good as it gets.

    I do like clean though… if I were wealthy the first thing I would do is hire a maid once a week ; -))

  13. I love the Churchill quote too. I’ve decided that perfection is the pursuit of the young. When you get older you become wiser and much more tired.

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