Done Is Perfect

Leo Babauta’s blog mnmlist is perfect. Why? Because it’s done.

From 2009 to 2011, Leo wrote several dozen posts on the site before slowing down. Seven posts in 2012, five in 2013. Then, nothing. In 2014, he officially retired the blog. A year went by, then two. Silence.

But what is this? Three posts in 2016. Three more the year after. Could this love be rekindled? Or are these the last embers of a flame about to lapse? Five years later, it seems the answer is clear. Then again, ash has always been gray, and so is life.

Will Leo one day make a stealthy return? Did he schedule some posts a decade in the future? A hundred years, perhaps? No one knows, and that is perfection. The tension that’ll linger forever. What if…?

Sometimes, the tension is rewarded. Another Matrix movie 18 years later? A complete remake of a game from 1997? But there’s a risk: What if addition only subtracts? What if the follow-up can’t live up to the original? That’s why most sequels never happen.

Then, there’s the privilege few receive: Someone picks up our mantle when we’re gone. It’s happening for John Ronald Reuel Tolkien right now. But even if no one keeps spinning our yarn for us, the tension of done will always remain. We can’t know what secret thoughts our late work might inspire, which quiet actions it may spring.

They say done is better than perfect, but actually, done is perfect, no matter how imperfect its final state. We won’t always see it, especially not when looking at our own creations, but sooner or later, someone else will.

Don’t be afraid to move on. It could be your greatest act of service yet.