Why Perfectionism isn’t your friend

Perfectionism: neatly laid out desk items

What is perfectionism?

I recently read something about perfectionism, and was surprised to learn that it is less about wanting to do everything perfectly, being in control, wanting to be the best you can be, and more about caring desperately how other people see you.

“Perfectionism is a self-destructive and addictive belief system that fuels this primary thought: If I look perfect and do everything perfectly, I can avoid or minimize the painful feelings of shame, judgement and blame… Perfectionism is more about perception than internal motivation, and there is no way to control perception.”

– Brené Brown, Daring Greatly.

It’s an addictive need to put immense pressure on yourself.

Perfectionism inhibits you. It stops you from taking small risks, experimenting, trying stuff out.

It cages you in.

It’s the little voice saying you can’t do something unless you’re 100% sure of the outcome, and that outcome has to be positive.

It’s not good for you.

So, after reading this and ruminating a little, I’m trying to develop a motto of ‘I’m not perfect and that’s a good thing.’

I’m no longer aiming for perfection. I’m aiming for – ‘I’m putting a lot of effort into this, and I want to do well, but it’s not the end of the world if I don’t.’

Taking the pressure off.

It’s quite hard to let things go. To do – enough. Enough is better than nothing. Something is better than nothing.

What about you? Do you have perfectionist tendencies? Are you aware of how they limit you? Is it something you want to change?

You might also like to read this on imposter syndrome, and for more Brené Brown, this.

Trying to be perfect may stop you from making decisions about your career change. If you’re feeling stressed and stuck and you’d like my help, book in a coaching session with me here: Contact Me

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