Every once in a while a single phrase in the vast sea of human communication sticks out and irritates me like a ‘pricker’ that gets stuck in your sock. Until I get rid of the ‘thing’ I can hardly focus on anything else.
“That’s good enough.”
Are we serious about this?
In what world is it okay to run around doing everything half assed? I think I might do this more than I realize.
I watched The Lone Ranger on Sunday evening with my family and I can tell you I was pretty disappointed when Johnny Depp’s hysterical portrayal of Tonto was cut short by faulty technology. I got 83%. It was a good movie at 83% it would have been a great movie at 100%. I just keep thinking—the ‘whole assed’ movie would have been fantastic!
If we are going to say “that’s good enough”--Why don’t we just be honest and say:
“I could do better” Or “I’m giving it 83%”
Why don’t we be really honest and admit that the person on the receiving end of our efforts is really not that important. Whether that person is a stranger, a friend, a boss, a co-worker, family member or even ourselves—let’s face it, when we say ‘that’s good enough’ aren’t we really saying “You aren’t worth the trouble—you aren’t worth my time, my effort, my energy.”
Is it okay for your heart surgeon to say “That’s good enough.”? How about your mechanic, is it okay with you if he puts your brakes back together and says “that’s good enough.”? Do you want to travel in a plane engineered by someone who said “that’s good enough” right before they signed off on the blueprints? Would you eat at a restaurant if you knew the person in charge of sanitation and food safety says “that’s good enough.”?
Does great effort only matter if lives hang in the balance?
Is ‘good enough’ okay when the consequences are small—like painting the bedroom or washing the car? Aren’t you still trading your time and attention for the act—Aren’t you worth achieving the best results for your time? Isn’t the person on the receiving end worth your efforts even when the act is small?
I wonder if you can make a good life giving all the little things 83% couldn’t you make a great life giving everything 100%?
I’m taking the pricker out of my sock. “That’s good enough” has to go—out of the phrase book…. The next time I want to say it, I’m going to keep working. The next time someone asks me to validate their 83% effort with a “That’s good enough, don’t you think?” I’m going to ask …“Is it?”
Time to demand and create some great whole assed lives!
…..And find out how Tonto survives the last 17% of the Lone Ranger. ---your 83% Cineplex is not good enough—not good enough in deed.