Perfectionism: Everything You Need to Know
Perfectionism is a personality characteristic that turns life into an eternal report card on performance or appearance. It may inspire you to overcome challenges and succeed when it’s in good shape. When unhealthy, it may lead to dissatisfaction quickly and persistently.
Extreme perfectionism is harmful because, despite its victims’ desire for achievement, their main concern is preventing failure, which leads to a pessimistic outlook. They don’t believe in unconditional love and think that receiving love and acceptance from others depends on doing everything perfectly.
What Causes Perfectionism?
Internal pressures, such as the desire to avoid failure or harsh criticism, are the main causes of perfectionism. Because perfectionistic impulses have significantly grown among young people over the last 30 years, regardless of gender or country, there is probably also a societal component to it. Increased competitiveness in academia and the workforce, the widespread use of social media, and the damaging social comparisons it fosters are all contributing factors.
What are the signs that someone is a perfectionist?
Perfectionists have unreasonably high standards for both themselves and other people. They are extremely critical of errors and eager to point out flaws. Because they are afraid of failing, they often put off finishing a job. They ignore praises and fail to recognize their accomplishments. Instead, they seek affirmation and praise from certain individuals in their lives.
What are the different kinds of perfectionism?
There are three domains where perfection appears. Self-centered perfectionism is placing an impossible standard on oneself. Imposing unattainable perfection standards on others is referred to as other-oriented perfectionism. Perceiving unjustifiable standards of perfection in others is a component of socially mandated perfectionism.
Is perfectionism a mental illness?
When perfectionism is excessive, it can be a negative personality characteristic. It is prevalent in many mental diseases, especially those focused on compulsive thoughts and actions, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. Despite not being classified as a mental illness (OCPD).
The Dangers of Being Perfectionistic
Of course, perfection is ideal and impossible in the real world. Perfection may have detrimental effects when pursued to an unhealthy extreme, including procrastination, a propensity to shy away from problems, inflexible all-or-nothing thinking, harmful comparisons, and a lack of inventiveness. Maladaptive perfectionism is often fueled by childhood trauma, feelings of worthlessness, poor self-esteem, and fear of failure. Depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, eating disorders, and even suicidal thoughts are commonly present with it.
Is perfectionism ever good for you?
Demanding perfection is not the same thing as aiming for excellence. Maladaptive perfectionists are failure-oriented, while adaptive or positive perfectionists establish lofty objectives, uphold high standards, and strive tirelessly for accomplishment. Adaptive perfectionists value challenge, progress, and effective problem-solving. Their tendency for perfection is a strength, not a problem.
How can you overcome perfectionism?
People who are committed to no impossible flawless ideal may succeed at a high level by letting go of the comparison attitude. They may do this by focusing on the present moment, practicing mindfulness, talking to themselves with kindness, and confronting their negative judgments. It is important to understand that even if something is imperfect, it may still be useful.
What is the difference between perfectionism and OCD?
Although they are different, the phrases “perfectionist” and “OCD” are sometimes used synonymously. While obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental disease where a person suffers intrusive thoughts and repeated actions they cannot control, perfectionism is a personality attribute marked by high expectations and standards. Perfectionism may or may not be an indication of OCD.