I'm sitting on the couch right now listening to a Metallica CD that is taking me back to the time in college when we crashed a dance at a Young Communists convention in Minsk in what was then the Soviet Union (really, true story). At the dance, we slipped a Metallica tape into the sound system and three of us hooked up with an East German kid for a head-banging airband performance that left me unable to move my head the next day without wincing with neck pain. Ahhhhh...memories.
What does that story have to do with the topic of this blog? Well, honestly, absolutely nothing. It's just a fun piece of Curt-trivia. But the CD is also reminding me of a scene in the Metallica documentary called Some Kind of Monster that I've been meaning to blog about since I first saw it.
In the scene, the members of the band are collaboratively working on a song. After the lead singer does some improvisation, one of the others said he thought the whole thing was kind of weak except for this one bit he really liked.
They discarded most of what the singer had come up with, but started expanding on just that one snippet. The resulting song turned out to be one of the main songs on their next album.
Besides being a fascinating look into the creative process, it reminded me of how things can work in our careers (and our lives) if we'll let it. Imperfection tends to be something we avoid like the plague, which is unfortunate, because often it's in precisely that imperfection that we'll find the spark of our best insights and ideas.
We don't need to be perfect right out of the starting gate. In fact, quite often (usually?) we won't be. But if we don't try something new because we don't want to risk imperfection, odds are good we'll completely miss the seeds of a whole new song.
Brought to you by Curt Rosengren, Passion Catalyst TM