by Sarah Hayhurst
In Balancing Act (Part 1), Sarah Hayhurst shared insights on how to keep perfectionism from hindering your work. Take another look at Balancing Act, Part 1, then read on:
All that said, if you’re like me, you may consciously need to “settle” sometimes. I’m a bit OCD, and I can even rationalize that characteristic from the Bible! Colossians 3:23 says, “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” Its counterpart in 1 Corinthians 14:40 says, “All things should be done decently and in order.”
Chances are, none of us intends to perform shoddy or imperfect work. If God gets the glory when my work is excellent, I give it my absolute best 24/7, right? Well, sometimes doing my best in one area means that I neglect another. Try setting time limits for a task or project, then move on to something else when the time is up for the day. Who knows? Sometimes transparency could have more impact than perfection because your audience, too, is finite and can relate.
Here’s the thing. While it’s a biblical desire to do excellent work, I must strive continually for balance. Ephesians 5:16 speaks about “making the best use of time.” You and I are human and finite. God made us to require rest … maybe to remind us that we are not God.
Sometimes after investing my limited time and abilities into something, I must humbly launch the project, knowing that I did my best in the time I could invest. Otherwise, I’ll never be “done” with anything! Yet, in the complicated process of this stewardship and by God’s grace, I want to express love to others who are relying on me while bringing God as much glory as I can. Nonetheless, God wants me to surrender my need for control—for trying to be perfect with the end goal of achieving praise, acceptance, and comfort from people whom I fear disappointing.
No matter what challenges you are facing today as an editor or author, my prayer is for you to be encouraged. We all need hope!
Revel in Fellowship
First, revel in the fellowship of family and colleagues—whether through The Christian PEN or other groups for writers. Other people share in your struggles, and a time-out to focus on someone else’s needs can be a breath of fresh air.
Second, keep moving; it’s the only way you’ll gain any momentum. That movement might be simply to allow yourself to take a break and do something else.
Know Your Limits
Finally, strive for balance and know your limitations. Accept your finite abilities as a gift, and trust in a sovereign God. Our inadequacies, including mushy brains and writer’s block, can be blessings in disguise to keep this life in perspective!
Sarah and her husband have been married for twenty-four years and currently reside in the Atlanta area with their three teenagers. While Sarah spends most of her spare time watching her children’s athletic events, she finds time to unwind by knitting, running, and playing piano.
Sarah is a gold member of The Christian PEN and Christian Editor Connection with whom she passed testing and demonstrated expertise in the proofreading, copy editing, and content editing of both fiction and nonfiction manuscripts as well as other content.