I was driving home from work the other day, in a bit of a rush because I knew I'd only have half an hour to throw some food at the kids and get changed before heading back out to meet a client. I pulled up at the traffic lights just near our house, and happened to glance to my right and notice how beautiful the evening light was on the pair of old bleached dead river redgums by the side of the road.
Immediately I thought Wow. That's a great photo, right there. My next thought was: Man, I wish I had my camera with me. Of course I did have my phone, but honestly? The camera just doesn't cut it, not when you're used to using an SLR. I knew I wouldn't be able to frame the shot tightly enough - sure, I could crop it later, but then I'd lose resolution, which isn't all that good to start with.
There wasn't time to dash home, grab the camera and get back there - my schedule was too tight, and besides, the light probably would have changed in the ten minutes or so it would take me to do that. If I'd been in less of a rush, I could have done a U-turn, pulled over into a nearby side street and got out of the car so I could get closer to my subject. But I couldn't even spare the few minutes that would take. So I sighed and resigned myself to missing the shot. Maybe tomorrow...
Then I had an "Aha!" moment. Who says it has to be perfect? I could just take the shot anyway, and at least I'd have something. That was better than the alternative: a big, fat zero.
I lowered the window, aimed my phone and took the shot, just a second before the taffic light turned green. It's not perfect - framing needs to be tighter, the asphalt and kerb in the foreground adds nothing to the image; nor does the van over on the right there. The resolution is low and there's a bit too much sky for it to be balanced. But the point is, I GOT the shot anyway. I captured the light, the colours and the stark beauty of the dead trees - the things that caught my attention in the first place.
If I'd insisted on everything being perfect, right now I'd have nothing.
Which got me thinking about fitness.... Ha! Of course it did; doesn't everything? ;o) How many times do we miss an opportunity for a workout because everything isn't perfect?
You forgot to set your alarm and now only have 20 minutes available, so you don't have time for that 60-minute workout DVD you were going to do. Do you think Bah! That sucks - and then sulk all day? Why not do 20 minutes of the workout? It's better than nothing.
You're sick or injured and can't run for a few weeks. You could sit on the couch...or you could go for a walk. At least you're moving the old bod.
There are a million reasons why we sometimes can't do an exercise activity we would like (or have planned) to do. And it's all too easy to use that as an excuse to do nothing at all.
But when life throws an obstacle in your way and your plans go out the window, you need to ask yourself: Am I going to miss the moment altogether or do I just snap a less than perfect picture?
Are you a perfectionist when it comes to exercise?