Exuberant Imperfection and Transcendent Purpose

I learned about two new theories this week, both of which interested me.  One theory I have already applied to my life.  The other is highly unlikely to be anything more than a passing interest, something that I note, nod, and say “that’s interesting” about, like a man standing on the street with no pants.

The first idea that I read about was Exuberant Imperfection.  From No Plot, No Problem, the idea is that, when writing, instead of worrying about finding that exact twist of phrase that strikes the perfect note, it is better to just write the imperfect sentence with happiness and quickness.  Instead of fussing over every single word, just write the first one that comes to mind to get your thought down.  The editing process can come later and give you a chance to fine-tune everything, but if you really want to have a novel or paper you are proud of, it’s more important to actually write the damn thing.  Most if not all writers can relate; you have an idea, you start to commit it to paper, then you begin the joyous second-guessing process, and by the time you are done, you have convinced yourself that not only is your writing terrible, but your ideas are lame, your intellect two steps above comatose, and your mother never loved you.  I found the entire book great fun to read, and I have already declared that I will win National Novel Writing Month in November.

The other idea or philosophy was Transcendent Purpose, as in, “What is your transcendent purpose?”  The thought is that employees will care more and want to excel in their occupations if they feel that what they do has meaning beyond a paycheck and a means to break up the monotonous fun of weekends.  For example, as an insurance accountant, I can say that my Transcendent Purpose is to help bring cheaper and cleaner energy to not only the United States, but the world.  I enable you to read this webpage.  It’s what I do.  Thank me in the comments.

Personally, it’s a little much for me.  I learned it during a company offsite (shocking!) and the speaker, Tim Irwin, was very good.  What he said does indeed make a lot of sense, and I believe that people who can make themselves adhere to a meaning far beyond what they actually do at work will actually be much more productive.  In my case, however, I am very passionate about my mediocrity, and sadly get stuck there.  I can’t take credit for electricity.

About Alan Edwards

Former cancer caregiver. Husband of the most magical and amazing person who ever lived.

Posted on June 5, 2009, in Philosophizin' and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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