Perfectionism is viewed as similar to attaining great achievements. However, there is a big difference between people who are perfectionists and high achievers. High achievers always do their very best no matter what the results are while perfectionists strive for excellence and are constantly enveloped with fear of failing.
Perfectionist people are so consumed with the idea of perfection that they set unattainable standards and expectations on themselves and on others. The idea of mediocrity or anything short of perfection is unpleasant and unacceptable.
How to manage perfectionism?
Everyone wants to succeed and it is required that you do your best all the time. It is okay to aim for perfectionism when this is the way you do things. This only becomes a problem when you constantly shadow your every action with the need to always be the best even if it costs you your health, your dignity or your relationships.
1. Recognize that you have a problem.
Perfectionist people do not see this trait as something negative. For you, this is your way of going after your goals and being successful. But once you admit to yourself that you have the tendencies of perfectionism, it will be easier to look for ways to manage it.
Bear in mind that being a perfectionist is not wrong if done within reasons but if you go overboard and it has affected your mental health, you need to reassess your choices and goals. If it has brought you more harm than good, you need to immediately seek intervention.
2. Train yourself to always look on the positive side.
You are your biggest critic. Doing things over and over again because they are not good enough for you causes you depression, anxiety and stress. For you, there is always something wrong. There is always room to make things better even if it will be done with great difficulty.
You judge and you criticize endlessly without realizing that you are hurting other people who are helping you. Even if it is hard, train your mind to always look on the brighter side. If your school dance number is not as perfect as you hope, just be glad that your friends had fun.
3. Accept failure.
Tell yourself that failure is part of being human. Everybody commits mistakes. Everyone is allowed to make mistakes. It does not make you a bad person when you fail once in a while. As a matter of fact, failure is one way of growing up.
The moment that you learn and accept that failing is okay, you will feel less pressured and stressed in doing things. You slowly become more aware that it is much better to enjoy the process than solely focusing on achieving a perfect result.
4. Be more realistic in setting goals and expectations.
Let go of your super high standards. Though it is good to set goals to motivate yourself to work harder, just be more realistic and practical. Your hard work will become pointless and fruitless when you do not look after your wellness.
If your goals and standards are causing you to have sleepless nights and losing or gaining weight, take a step back and evaluate. It is not healthy when you define your identity with all the things you must achieve.
5. Learn to accept criticisms.
It is normal to feel bad when people criticize you but this is not the end of the world. You must learn to see criticisms as a way of improving yourself. Accept and embrace these criticisms and make them your stepping stones as you journey towards your goals.
Perfectionism causes you to have low self-confidence and doubts on your skills. Do not let your fear of failure and criticism get in the way.
6. Reward yourself.
Small achievements matter even if you feel that they are not worth celebrating. The hard work you put through in everything you do deserves applause and a cheer.
Getting the highest score in your grade is not an easy feat so you need to be happy and reward yourself with your favorite meal. It does not have to be extravagant and costly. It is all about celebrating the moments that you feel proud and good about yourself.
7. Do not procrastinate.
You procrastinate because you are afraid of committing mistakes while doing your task. You feel that it is much better to delay rather than spending hours and hours doing something that you know is not good enough. Eliminate this way of thinking and start working on your tasks.
Learn to prioritize and to delegate tasks. If it is a huge project, you can break it down into manageable tasks so that you will not feel pressured and stressed out to accomplish all in one sitting.
8. Avoid negative influences.
Surround yourself with people who will inspire and influence you to be better and kinder to yourself and others. Avoid being with people whose only aim in life is to always compete with others.
Being a perfectionist can trigger mental health issues. One way to avoid this is to be with people who will support and guide you no matter what. These people should be the ones who will cheer you for your accomplishment and will help you get up when you stumble.
9. Try to find joy in everything you do.
Perfectionism is all about the results. This is why you tend to be hard on yourself just to make sure that the result is perfect. There is no more excitement and joy in doing the tasks because your only focus is to create perfection.
Find the meaning in all the things that you do. Seek joy even in the most difficult tasks. When you are doing group projects, do not isolate yourself. Learn to enjoy the company of others and the beautiful feeling of friendships.
10. Go to therapy.
One of the most effective ways to manage perfectionism is going to a therapist. Therapy near me and counselling will show you the entirety of your behavior towards yourself and others. It gives you different approaches on how to face your perfectionism without causing fear and worries.
Mindshift Psychological Services promotes health and wellness for all people struggling with mental issues. Their top of the line services cater not just to people suffering with depression and trauma but also to those who have excessive behavioral problems.
You may visit their website and know more about their services and medical professionals. Schedule an appointment or contact them at (714) 584-9700.