Set reasonable goals. Perfectionists have high standards. These standards tend to lead to setting goals that are not realistic. For example, setting a goal of finishing several major projects in a day. Thus, leading to the feeling of being overwhelmed and stressed. Perfectionists should set more attainable goals. This allows for a person to have the ability to give their full effort and focus to a project. This is a healthy approach.
Many successful people are perfectionists. At the same time, they have the ability to say, “Done is Better Than Perfect” and just complete and wrap up a project. What is the best way to overcome the stalling and procrastination that perfectionism causes? How does one overcome the fear of potential critique or the fear of not being successful? In this interview series, called “How To Get Past Your Perfectionism And ‘Just Do It’, we are interviewing successful leaders who can share stories and lessons from their experience about “how to overcome the hesitation caused by perfectionism.
As a part of this series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr.
Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr is the founder and owner of both VLB/VBJ Enterprises, LLC, and 4-U-Nique Publishing. He is also a bestselling author, a speaker, and a consultant. A modern-day “Renaissance man,” Vid Buggs is a man of diverse interests who directs his many talents towards bringing people together, encouraging them to look past their differences to unite and to make the world a better place.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we start, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?
I grew up in Hampton, VA, in a two-parent home. I am the middle children and I have two sisters. My parents were young barely in their twenties when they had me, so through the years, I saw how my parents turned their struggles (life and finances), into being successful. Growing up my parents instilled in us that you can achieve anything that you put your mind to if you are willing to work hard for it. They also let us know to never fear anything and never be afraid to ask questions. My upbringing is why I always believed that anything is possible, and that sunshine always comes after the storm.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
My favorite “Life Lesson Quote” is one of my own, humbly. “Adversity brings Prosperity”. I think this quote is relevant to my life because life is a balance. You have peaks and valleys. After all my struggles I was able to experience success. After my growing pangs, I became prosperous in knowledge, appreciation, and happiness. Hence, “Adversity brings Prosperity”.
Is there a particular book, podcast, or film that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?
Wow, great question. There are several books and films that have impacted me. However, if I must pick only one, I would have to say “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho. This book was given to me by an older lady who I met. She told me that I reminded her of the main character in the story. The book resonates with me because this young man was in search of something that he had along. However, while looking for his “treasure” he found that the treasure was the experiences he experienced on his journey. Because I am very goal-oriented and a perfectionist, I tended to focus too much on achieving my goals and not appreciating the experiences that I had along my journey to achieving the goals.
You are a successful business leader. Which three-character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?
The three-character traits that were most instrumental to my success are:
1). Determination. I’m very stubborn and when I have my mind set on something, I will not stop until it is accomplished. If you tell me something isn’t obtainable, I’m going to do whatever is possible, morally, to achieve that goal. This is how I’ve been successful in life. Where I grew up, there wasn’t a blueprint for me to follow. Being an author, an entrepreneur, among other things isn’t common where I grew up.
2). Willing to Learn and make mistakes. A person isn’t able to become successful in life if they aren’t willing to learn. Learning is about growing. A part of growing is the ability to make mistakes. This was hard for me at first because I am a perfectionist. However, the process of growing and being successful is to make mistakes and learn from them. I don’t believe in failure. I believe that there are lessons in everything. It’s for us to find the lessons and to learn from them because life is a learning and growing process.
3). Hard Worker. I’ve found that working hard leads to smart work, and smart work leads to easier work. Any success that I have had has always followed hard and smart work. I also think we appreciate things more when we have worked for them. Appreciation is a part of success in my opinion.
Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion. Let’s begin with a definition of terms so that each of us and our readers are on the same page. What exactly is a perfectionist? Can you explain?
A perfectionist is a person who doesn’t accept anything short of perfection in anything that they do.
The premise of this interview series is making the assumption that being a perfectionist is not a positive thing. But presumably, seeking perfection can’t be entirely bad. What are the positive aspects of being a perfectionist? Can you give a story or example to explain what you mean?
Positive aspects of being a perfectionist are we have a lot of ambition. We are motivated, hard workers, determined, persistent, preserve, and focused. Perfectionists do not accept failing, we are willing learners, and we will try something over and over, instead of giving up. Perfectionists are willing to go the extra mile to accomplish things. We are often overachievers. We pay attention to details and have high standards.
To me, perfectionism is the view that there is always room for improvement. Not settling for less than your best.
What are the negative aspects of being a perfectionist? Can you give a story or example to explain what you mean?
Our strengths are usually our weaknesses as well. The negative aspects of being a perfectionist are the high standards that they set and doing their best to live up to that standard, day in and day out. Also, expecting others to live up to their high standards. Thus, causing them to not accept help from others.
Perfectionists tend to isolate themselves, thus leading to social and mental issues, at times.
From your experience or perspective, what are some of the common reasons that cause a perfectionist to “get stuck” and not move forward? Can you explain?
Because of these high standards that perfectionists place on ourselves and our work, we can tend to procrastinate on getting things done. We tend to wait on the perfect time or the perfect strategy to do the work. This oftentimes led to being unproductive.
I have lost countless hours procrastinating because I’m thinking of a perfect way to attack a given project or endeavor.
Here is the central question of our discussion. What are the five things a perfectionist needs to know to get past their perfectionism and “just do it?” Please share a story or example for each.
1). “There is no such thing as a perfect situation.” In fact, “our imperfections are what makes us perfect.” We weren’t created to be perfect. Instead of trying to be perfect, focus on the mission and the greater purpose. The mission and purpose will always be more important than being perfect. Allow yourself to make mistakes.
2). “Get over yourself.” As perfectionists, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to, well be perfect in all that we do. The truth is no one expects any of us to be perfect or to perform all our tasks perfectly. Instead of focusing on perfectly doing things, focus on doing the best you can, the positives, and being happy.
3). Set reasonable goals. Perfectionists have high standards. These standards tend to lead to setting goals that are not realistic. For example, setting a goal of finishing several major projects in a day. Thus, leading to the feeling of being overwhelmed and stressed. Perfectionists should set more attainable goals. This allows for a person to have the ability to give their full effort and focus to a project. This is a healthy approach.
4). Stop overthinking. Overthinking leads to stress and procrastination. Procrastination leads to Unproductivity. If you aren’t productive, well, things do not get done. My advice is to simplify and outline your plan of attack and get the goal accomplished.
5). Enjoy the Process. Focus on the enjoyable process of your journey in accomplishing your goal(s). Take each experience as a learning experience, that will improve you, your work for the long term. Focus on the positives, be realistic, and do not take criticism personally. Make an adventure out of accomplishing your goals, tasks, and your endeavors.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be?
Thank you! I would like to think that the mission I’m most passionate about is doing just that. My mission is to help others to overcome their adversity and help them realize and reach their potential, so they can achieve their goals and dreams.
Is there a person in the world whom you would love to have lunch with, and why? Maybe we can tag them and see what happens!
Nas. He inspired me to write. His first album, “Illmatic” was the first time I heard anyone painting pictures that I could relate to with words.
How can our readers follow you online?
Your readers can follow me online at www.vidbuggs.com.
Facebook: @Vid Lamonte Buggs Jr.
Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!