Why Your Perfectionism is a Problem

June 5, 2021Klein E

It's the cliché (and usually insincere) answer to a job interview question, "So… what's your greatest weakness?"

Perfectionism might seem like more of an advantage than a hindrance, but believe me, it definitely can be a problem. Aiming for perfection inevitably leads to disappointment. So what are some ways that perfectionism is obstructing your success?

You can never be fully satisfied

If you find yourself sitting, staring at a blank computer screen and wondering why you can't even write a single sentence you're satisfied with, you may be suffering from standards that are too high. It's important to remember that whenever any of us do something for the first time, it's probably not going to be amazing. Say, if you're writing an English essay, work on switching off that voice in your head saying, "it's so bad!" Once you have a first draft, no matter how terrible it may or may not be, you have something to work with, edit and refine!

Fear of failure

Negative self-talk often accompanies perfectionism, telling you that if what you do isn't perfect, it's not worth doing at all. It's this kind of mentality that leads some perfectionists to never even attempt something that they don't believe they can achieve. But doing nothing is worse than trying and failing. If you avoid mistakes, how will you ever learn?

Possibility of burnout

Perfectionists throughout history have struggled with the high standards and expectations which they place upon themselves. Famous painter Claude Monet was known to destroy masterpieces when dissatisfied, and was quoted saying, "My life has been nothing but a failure." Know that if you have perfectionistic tendencies, you are in good company! However, learn from the mistakes of those before you: you are not perfect, and this does not make you a failure.

If you loved this article, you will LOVE all of our other articles, such as: When You’re Your Own Worst Enemy in Year 12 and  Tips on Studying for Exams – Learnmate Tutoring.

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Klein E

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