Not Lazy

When I say Good Enough Life, people often respond with some version of, “I love it! But of course, we also need to keep striving to become better and more successful people…” Which just shows me how much resistance we have to the idea of being Good Enough.

I glimpsed a few articles online when I was trying to figure out if I had published this site or not (I hadn’t).¬† A couple of interlocking themes stood out: Seven (or pick a number) Steps to (work hard so you can generate the) Feeling (of being) Good Enough. In other words, you aren’t good enough, and you even suck at pretending you are, so here’s some more busy work to take you away from your anxiety and existential dread… The other theme¬† was: I Used to be a Slacker and That Ain’t Good.

The idea behind this blog, behind the Good Enough Life, is pretty simple: Not driving ourselves crazy with what’s not ultimately of true value to us. It isn’t about working ourselves up into finally being Good Enough. Guess what? Yes, we are all Good Enough already. I know you don’t believe it. We will look at that another time.

It isn’t about slacking, or never getting anything done, although for many people who overwork and overreach and overstress, the idea of doing anything to merely a Good Enough degree may seem like slacking, and will bring up a lot of anxiety.

I am not partial to slacking any more than I am partial to overexertion for no good reason. I also do not have all of this figured out. I am writing, in part, because I need to learn all of this. I am also writing it because I know I am not alone. In fact, I believe this is the wave of the future, this relearning of how to function on a human scale. And, if in the future we have more balanced lives, that is going to benefit everyone, including the planet and all the lives we share it with.

Yes, I know I just ended a sentence with a preposition. And I know that you understood the meaning of the sentence. So, it is, for the purpose of this blog, good enough.

Here’s a bit I typed out yesterday on the fear of relaxation. Since I typed it, I can’t edit it on here. I could edit and re-type it, but I’m practicing being OK with letting people see my messy process. That’s part of why I am incorporating typed pieces into this blog. Also, I love typewriters.

This was typed on a black 1936 Corona Standard flat top. If you were wondering. Well, it was typed on that machine even if you weren’t wondering. It just was. I typed it there. So I know.

My Good Enough First Post

I am starting this blog because I have grown weary of the exhortations to excel and expand my life. I like a human-sized, manageable life. Some folks are made for really big things, some are made more low key. Some of us are more introverted, or have disparate interests, or don’t want to put all that time and energy into expansion. Just like shaving my legs and armpits, nobody has ever given me a good enough reason to do it.

Not only am I constitutionally unsuited to living a Big Expansive Life, it seems in some ways a symptom of the ills of capitalism gone wrong. Where consumerism and growth are everything, and quality – of life, of goods, of experience – suffers.

Also, I love typewriters. So I am experimenting with how to incorporate typing into blog posts. I don’t actually know how. And I don’t know if I will do much with this blog. But if I do, it could be a kind of salve for the wounds of our ever-expanding, ever-demanding voices in our heads.

Perfectionism is dead! Long Live The Good Enough!

I finished a letter to a young friend today, and I thought hey, this would make a good blog post. But of course I have had that thought several times since I had the idea for the blog. And I haven’t posted any of those. But I am posting this one. Not because it is EVERYTHING I WANT TO SAY HERE AND IT IS PERFECT. But it’s possibly good enough, and that is good enough for me.