Perfect Rust

In the UK there are two periods in a calendar year when you can purchase a new car with a registration plate to suit. When we invest in a brand new car we expect perfection and pay a premium price.

insignia car

When we purchase a second hand car we are not concerned as much about the registration plate. Our expectation levels are more realistic according to its age and the price we will pay for it.

A new car has had lots of treatment upon its metal components to guard against decay and rust. An older car will have a reasonable amount of wear and tear and numerous places where rust has revealed itself.

mini car

We have a certain expectation when we purchase various goods and experiences. However, as we will all agree, nothing is perfect and complete in a continuous sense. Naturally we become disappointed in what we have and hope for, so we look to replace them with other items of perfection or have them repaired or upgraded.

The concepts of Perfection and Rust are polar opposites and pull us in one direction or another.

I wonder how you react to the desire and expectation to have things, situations and even relationships perfect. We have to realise that we are not perfect ourselves, for we all are subject to decay and rust which affects our hopes and aspirations.

Rust represents a deterioration process that is visible and substantial. It is an iron (red) oxide that is the result of iron and oxygen reacting through a presence of water or air moisture.

Many people desire perfection to maintain a state of happiness. This compares to those who are content with pre used items. A rusty anchor harbours the ship in a heavy storm and keeps it steady when the waves are calm. Something that is shiny and new may not be fully tested to fulfil its intended purpose!


I have just read an article, ‘Is Good Enough the new Perfection? by Andrew Hall an Executive coach.

He refers to the family environment that offers encouragement for us to be ‘a wonderful and clever child.’ This is compared to times of formal education when we have to study to succeed and often ‘only perfection is good enough!’ He then contrasts the present years in work and business.

Yes it is important to seek perfection and to value its outcome. The surgeon has to perform a successful operation so that the patient experiences healing. However, in many life situations we work towards a conclusion that is a ‘progress not a perfection.’


It can be argued that we strive too much in what we do and expect. It is vital then to stop, review and take life at a steadier pace.

Andrew asked the question: what drives us in our pursuit of perfection? It is important to aim for the highest but equally we have to balance such aspirations and be reassured that our ‘good enough’ is realistic and acceptable

Take some time to think about your expectations and ideal perfection from others and yourself?

Are there any imbalances that require identification and adjustment?

How can we become more realistic and ‘good enough’ to maintain that healthy balance in life?

In modern conversations you find that many conclude a given outcome or transaction with the response: ‘Perfect.’ In reality perfection is often a passing illusion and something that happens only briefly. It can seem that life has more of a propensity for decay rather than a continued perfection.

So we face a dilemma! The pursuit of perfection and the reality of rust. (Imperfection) What we want to be looking for is a ‘perfect rust.’

People who have a strong faith look forward to a time when the imperfect is replaced with the perfect in God’s heavenly presence. Such a view helps to balance the ‘perfect and imperfect’ and lays a basis to work realistically with that ‘perfect rust.’

I often see an example of ‘perfect rust’ on a local American pickup truck which has a ‘rust finish’ and looks really different and cool.

There is a student accommodation block in central Manchester called New Medlock House that also has a ‘perfect rust finish’ and looks equally cool and different.

new medlock house

There is something special about a newly painted gate compared to an old gate that shows the marks of rust and aging.

black gate

However, there can be a comfort with an old gate that has served an important purpose for many years and aged appropriately. It has all the hallmarks of ‘perfect rust’ that is ‘good enough’ to perform the required task on a daily basis with peoples appropriate thanksgiving.

Rusty gate

So may you enjoy and work well with your ‘perfect rust.’


For further reading hit the links below for the second edition of my book Blog 51 (October 2020) in black and white or colour

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