I’m guessing that we all didn’t get to where we are by NOT being obsessive about the details? Amiright???
Getting Real offers pragmatic suggestions to avoid wasting time on eventual dead ends — go forth and if and when you hit a dead end, turn around and keep going. For many of us, however, not considering the details before jumping in may feel exactly like not doing the necessary prep work. My question, thus, is this:* How do we undo a lifetime of programming that taught us to plan ahead while considering every possible contingency?** I suspect the answer has something to do with more faith and less fear…
*In the spirit if Getting Real, I am keeping this post short and to the point.
**Although I am only posing this one question, I must share with you my paranoia that you will think I am half-assing this post. Therefore, I will tell you that I considered writing about a friend’s childhood tea party preparations that never led to actual tea parties (I am happy to elaborate on this in class), second year IRB application writing that took more than a year, and paralyzing perfectionism that masquerades as procrastination.
These are interesting points, Silvana, and I’ve wondered about this too. Academia is all about making sure your ducks are in a row before you go public with your thoughts/ideas/writing/projects/etc. Part of this, I think, stems from the natural desire to avoid being wrong or failing. But as we’ve discussed already and will keep discussing during this semester, failure can be a great teacher and motivator. Perhaps we all need to work toward an academia that’s more tolerant of failure? Changing that climate could help reduce the lure of perfectionism that’s so easy to fall into.