Plan for imperfection

On December 20, 2014, Pastor Steven Furtick, Lead Pastor at Elevation Church, presented the sermon “There’s Been a Change of Plans“. While I invariably learn something from each sermon he prepares, I was figuratively slapped on the forehead by his statement at 18 minutes and 11 seconds into the message (timing from the available Podcast).

He said, “Sometimes our expectation of perfection stops our celebration of progress.” If you know me personally, you can attest to the fact that I am demanding both in the classroom (I teach mechanical engineering at UNC Charlotte) and on the football field (I’ve coached high school and college football for many years). Subsequently, I’ve lived this statement many times. I’m certainly not suggesting that you must lower your standards to appreciate progress around you. However, I have personally missed progress many times because a result wasn’t EXACTLY what I expected (okay, let me be honest, required); it wasn’t perfect.

If you’ve also missed out on moments of satisfaction because you demanded perfection, I encourage you to do the same thing I’m going to do. I’m going to spend 2015 looking for opportunities to recognize and reward progress, rather than focusing on the inevitable imperfections!

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About Tony Schmitz

Tony Schmitz received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Temple University in 1993, his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1996, and his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1999. He is a mechanical engineering professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
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