Why Trying Too Hard To Make The Grass Greener Can Kill It Off.

The title of today’s article should not get confused with the idea of trying something new.

I am not saying in any shape or form that you should not go and try new things, far from it, that is not my style. I actually believe the saying ‘The Grass Isn’t Always Greener …’ is probably one of the most dangerous sayings created by man as it prevents people from trying.

When anyone says it to me I usually answer with ‘I don’t care whether it is greener or not, I just want to walk in it for a while’.

I don’t think people should care whether it is greener or not, they should go out and try things and see if it is right for them, it is the only way that people are going to know. It most certainly isn’t going to be down to your friends or families psychic future predicting abilities… or lack of them.

No one can tell you whether that move to Spain was right for you or whether spending that £50 a month on a training course would work out, only you can find out for yourself.

The only way to find out is usually to go and do it and try it for yourself. There is no other way.

When I say ‘Trying Too Hard To Make The Grass Greener Can Kill It Off’ I am referring to the grass you already have or the situation you are in. Now I have to make sure I get this across as best as I can because I also do not want you to think I am against trying to change your situation for the better.

I am not, I am trying to refer to taking it that little ‘too far’ looking for perfection when it ultimately causes more harm. Let me explain what I mean…

We have a small grassed area in our garden; we didn’t have any grass until last summer when I laid several inches of new soil into a raised bed area that I built.

grass seed

The better half bought a big box of grass seed which she threw over the soil we then covered the seeds over with more soil and watered it.

It grew and it grew well, we were very chuffed with what we had achieved.

green grass

This year the grass began to grow as it does in the spring but it wasn’t as green as it had been or could be. Too me it looked fine, there was nothing wrong with it, it was still green and healthy but my better half thought it was not green enough and wanted it greener.

So off she went and bought a box of grass/lawn feed, she followed the instructions (she says) and spread it over the grass. Within a few days patches of soil began to appear where grass was dying. These patches grew bigger until the grassed area was a mix of grass and soil patches. It looked like someone had gone mad throwing bleach over a green sheet.

We do not know whether she used too much, whether it needed to be diluted or what, she swears blind that she read and followed the instructions but whatever happened it did the opposite to what she wanted.

grass patches

It has taken several weeks of raking, removing and replacing soil and sowing new grass seed for new grass to begin to grow in the affected areas. It still isn’t back to how it was and might require more grass seed but I think we have now managed to remove the toxic soil and dilute any remaining toxins allowing new grass seed to take route.

So you see, the moral of this story is to not keep trying to make something which is already perfect more perfect. You have to know when something is ‘right’ and move onto another project and enjoy what you have.

I am now referring to things in a business, I know people who have wasted a lot of time and money trying to change things to look ‘perfect’ when it would not have made any difference to the website or product. No one has passed a comment on how great those changes are, I know that they did not know what it looked like before those changes were made but I do know that no one would have complained about them either.

In fact the time that was spent trying to make certain websites and products ‘greener’ have been pretty close to killing the projects because other things were overlooked by busy staff ‘greening things up’ or just not had the time to finish important bits off due to that ‘greening up’ mission.

What is more off putting? Going to a hotel where the lawn is fully grassed over but a light shade of green or a scabby patchwork of soil and lush dark green grass? Sometimes we can focus on the wrong thing at the wrong time, yes impressions are important but often we only scan ‘beauty’ where we SEE ‘ugly’.

A full green lawn may not be as beautiful as a dark green lawn but it would not be noticed as much as the dried patch work lawn by visitors … but those visitors will notice when there is a shortage of staff at reception or a lack of clean bedding in the hotel room which might come about from sending staff out to ‘green up the grass’.

Then there are the extra costs of putting the issues right which have come about from the ‘greening up’ that wasn’t needed, in my situation we have spent time and money on raking soil, buying new clean compost soil and seeds and the time having to maintain the grass for the new seeds to grow.

So if you are developing a product or a website, it might be worth stopping for a few minutes and thinking about the things you are focused on. Are they really worth it? Will they make a better product or could they possibly do more harm? Are you doing nothing more than wasting time and money on what is essentially nothing more than a pointless exercise of ‘greening up’ an already green lawn?