Perfectionism is a personality trait that presents in a person striving for flawlessness and setting extremely high standards for themselves.
This is often accompanied by extreme self-critiques and the search for feedback from others.
A drive to better ourselves can help us stay committed to challenging tasks and overcome serious obstacles, but psychologists have linked excessive perfectionism with mental health problems such as depression, eating disorders, anxiety, and more.
If you’re wondering whether or not you’re a perfectionist, there’s a good chance you are, at least to a degree. And if we’re being honest here, there’s also a good chance you have some investment in the identity of being a perfectionist because of the positive connotations of the word “perfect”—who doesn’t want to be perfect?
It’s important to educate yourself about what constitutes perfectionism and why it’s seen as a negative thing. You can decide how much you want to work at shrugging off these traits and learn strategies to accomplish your goal.
Below are signs to show you are a perfectionist:
You Crave Approval
Who judges perfection? In the minds of many perfectionists, it’s other people. This tends to make perfectionists desire approval above all else. If you find yourself focusing more on what people say about your efforts than on the efforts themselves, your perfectionism is negatively affecting your priorities.
You Cannot Accept and Celebrate Your Success
It’s never good enough, so you get sucked so far into the details that you become frustrated, even angry. Even when your goal is complete and results in success, you believe you could and should have done it better. Perfectionists don’t acknowledge their wins to the extent of feeling the joy and satisfaction of a job well done. Instead, they find flaws in how they, or others, executed the project. There is always something wrong, even though the outcome is exactly what they wanted.
You Avoid Taking on Challenges that May Cause You to Fail
Perfectionists like to stick with what they know. If you are presented with an opportunity that means you will have to develop more skills or move outside of your comfort zone, you’re likely to turn it down. You are afraid that you’re not smart enough to tackle a new learning curve and will be seen as a failure or let someone down.
You Struggle With Getting Things Done on Time
Since perfection is an illusion, the pursuit of it is never complete, and neither are your projects. You may get things done, but you are in a constant battle with the decisions and motivation to complete certain things. The “what ifs” and expectation of a negative consequence or result preoccupies you and the pressure can be overwhelming.
You Invest A Lot Of Energy Into Masking Your Flaws
Perfectionists fear they Will be judged harshly for their flaws. In an effort to escape that judgment, they try to keep up the appearance of perfection. And many of them have mastered the ability to convince other people everything is “just perfect” even when they feel like everything is falling apart.
If you are a perfectionist, walk through the journey with someone who understands what you are going through till you rise above it.
A Word From Wikirise
If you see some of these perfectionist traits in yourself, don’t despair. Recognizing that a change may be needed is a very important first step toward creating a more easygoing nature and achieving the inner peace and real success that comes from overcoming perfectionism and being able to say that “almost perfect” is still a job very well done.
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