Perfectionists are those who can only feel comfortable when everything is perfect. Their criteria for happiness, is perfection. They are people who put in a significant amount of time and effort to make sure that everything that they do is perfect
Most perfectionists love to declare that “they are a perfectionist” as a justification for their behaviour. They will often make this statement with a tone of pride because they and others know that perfectionists tend to produce excellent results, mainly due to the amount of time that they spend on achieving things.
Feeling comfortable and gaining admiration from others are a couple of the benefits of being a perfectionist, so it’s understandable why people continue to be perfectionists. But are there any silent costs and if there are, what are they?
Here are a few of the costs of being a perfectionist:
1) Perfectionists don’t have normal lives. They spend most of their lives trying to be perfect as this is the only way that they can feel “comfortable” and good enough. They spend so much time perfecting things that they choose not to spend time with family and friends so therefore miss out on enjoying the company of those people around them. They miss out on having good times with good people.
2) Due to the time dedicated to perfectionism, they don’t spend time doing the fun things in life, so they miss out on relaxing and having fun.
3) Some of them don’t look after their physical and mental wellbeing because getting things perfect is more important than looking after themselves. Eventually they burnout.
4) They can alienate themselves from others as perfectionists are so perfect that their presence makes other people feel inferior, so some people will avoid spending time with them. Some people feel so inferior around perfectionists that they will find a way to criticise the perfectionist to bring them down “a peg or two”. Being criticised is unpleasant for anyone but it’s especially unpleasant for a perfectionist as it feels as though someone is telling them that they aren’t good enough, which is the message that they desperately want to avoid.
5) Perfectionists are very rarely happy as their criteria for happiness is so strict. When they do get something perfect then they can feel really good but these moments are few and far between because it takes so such time and effort to get to that point.
Do you recognise the costs of perfectionism here? Are you a perfectionist? Have you experienced these costs? Is it time to make some changes so that you and others around you are happier?
If you are a perfectionist, only you can choose to drop the need to be perfect. Remind yourself that we are all imperfect. This doesn’t make us bad or inferior or the dreaded…….not good enough! It just makes us human, which is totally normal.
If you do want to get off of the perfectionist treadmill so that you can finally give yourself a break and become calmer and happier, change your criteria for being comfortable and happy. Focus on being “good enough” or “above average” and producing “good enough” or “above average” results, as these criteria are far easier to achieve than perfect, which means you will feel comfortable more often.
This small trick will make a huge difference
If you are currently paying the price for perfectionism, then it may be time to start chasing self love and self acceptance rather than perfection and start adopting realistic criteria so that you can let the perfectionist unicorn’s fly into the clouds, where they belong……
I hope this helps.
Until next time…..
I help clients to become free from the the need to be perfect. I do this by helping them to change their perfectionist beliefs at the subconscious level. I find the real cause of the problem from their childhood and help them to change it. I use EFT (tapping) and Matrix Reimprinting to do this. If you would like help with this, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to book a 20 minutes free discovery call, so we can discuss how I can help you so that you can finally be free of it.