Thursday, December 15, 2011

Beware of Perfectionism

What is Perfectionism? 

The irrational belief that you and/or your environment must be perfect.
Striving to be the best, to reach the ideal, and to never make a mistake.
A habit developed from youth that keeps you constantly alert to the imperfections, failings, and weakness in yourself and others.
A level of consciousness that keeps you ever vigilant to any deviation from the
norm, the guidelines, or the way things are “suppose to be”
The belief that no matter what you attempt it is never “good enough” to meet
your own or others expectations.

Irrational beliefs that contribute to perfectionism

Everything in life must be done to your level of perfection, which is often higher than anyone else's.
Its unacceptable to make a mistake.
I have no value in life unless I am successful.
You must always strive to reach the ideal in everything you do because it is in the achievement of the ideal that you give meaning to your life.
Don’t ever let anyone know what goal you’re working on, that way they won’t consider you a failure if you don’t reach it.

Some negative consequences of perfectionism

Low self-esteem
Compulsive behavior
Lack of motivation
Lack of belief in self

To overcome perfectionism we need to:

Accept ourselves as a human beings.
Forgive ourselves for mistakes or failings.
Accept that “ideal” is only a guideline/goal to be worked toward not to be achieved 100%.
Develop a sense of patience, and reduce the need to “get it done yesterday”.
Be easier on oneself; setting unrealistic goals or deadlines sets you up for failure.
Accept yourself the way you are; let go of the ideas of how you “should be”.
Reward yourself for your progress, even when progress is slight.
Realize the most important thing is to be going in a positive direction.
Love yourself, believe you deserve good things.