How to Deal with the Curse of Perfectionism

How to Deal with the Curse of Perfectionism

Nobody’s perfect, but do all people agree with that statement when they think about their personal achievements, appearance, career, relationships and daily routine? Today, millions of people around the world struggle from the curse of perfectionism (often unconsciously), and even the most rational people are risking to be overwhelmed by it.

In order to avoid the unfavorable consequences of perfectionism, everyone is responsible for their unrealistic illusions. They need to be aware of it and remember that perfectionism is not a healthy point of view for many reasons. The EssayShark team prepared the points of “How to Deal with the Curse of Perfectionism” for us to know all the secrets of perfection and how and why we should fight it.

  1. Understand What is Perfectionism

It appears that there are not many people who would really understand what psychologists mean when they say about perfectionism. As a result, misunderstandings and improper use of the term lead to the mass unawareness concerning the dangers and symptoms of perfectionism, such as even average people do not recognize their problems. Moreover, there are at least two types of perfectionism, namely, theological and psychological.

The first type refers to “the theological doctrine that a state of freedom from sin is attainable on earth”. Perhaps, if a person was brought up in such a religious environment, his or her self-esteem would always be lower than expected, due to the inability to keep all the commandments and getting rid of all sins during the lifetime.

The second type is more general and common. According to the psychological definition of the phenomenon, “perfectionism involves putting pressure on ourselves to meet high standards, which then powerfully influences the way we think about ourselves. Researchers have shown that parts of perfectionism are helpful, and parts are unhelpful”. In other words, perfection is a mental position/condition when people wish that everything and everyone in the world, including themselves, to be spotless and perfect.

There are many symptoms of perfectionism, but such as extremely high standards, unrealistic goals, and self-judgment are the most characteristic.

  1. Understand the Dangers and Disadvantages of Perfectionism

Perfectionism affects practically all spheres of one’s life, and to deal with the curse of perfectionism everyone should be aware of its dangers. In other words, you should know why is it bad to be a perfectionist. And there are, basically, two ways to achieve the goal:

  1. According to the medical specialists, there are such clinical issues related to perfectionism: “depression, anxiety, self-harm, social anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, binge eating, anorexia, bulimia, and other eating disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic fatigue syndrome, insomnia, hoarding, dyspepsia, chronic headaches, and, most damning of all, even early mortality and suicide”.
  2. On the other hand, consider social consequences, or how your perfectionism can affect society. For example, Claude Monet, a famous impressionist painter, struggled from perfectionism; he destroyed fifteen of his incredible paintings because he was upset with their quality. As a result, the world lost such masterpieces as Monet’s due to the artist’s perfectionism.

3.Read Biographies of Successful People

One of the best ways to deal with perfectionism is the reading of quality books about successful men and women of the past who came through the periods of failures and darkness. Such reading might help you to realize that nobody is perfect, mistakes are part and parcel of our existence, and nobody can achieve ultimate perfection during this life on Earth.

For example, read about Steve Jobs, the man who revolutionized the world of technology; then, read chapters about his failures, both in the realms of business and personal life. That will help you to be more realistic about people’s capacities and achievements. Unfortunately, we see only the best sides of successful men and women on TV or newspapers; we see their hardworking, talents, commitment, communication skills, and outside the box thinking. However, there is always a dark side of success, hard periods of fighting, and losing.

Therefore, you should always keep in mind that there are no perfect people in the world, and you are not unique in that respect. Period.

  1. Develop More Realistic Expectations

Obviously, much of what constitutes perfectionism has to do with exaggerated beliefs of somewhat disillusioned people whose understanding of life and worldview is rooted in stories of success, books, TV shows, and yellow press. Therefore, it is vitally important to develop more realistic expectations in order to defeat the perfectionistic point of view.

According to Matthew Jones, “by setting more realistic goals, you’ll eliminate excess energy that would go towards the impossible, and have a more balanced life”. In other words, we have to accept ourselves, our capacities, our context and environment, and our real chances; we have to accept ourselves as we are, and that is the only way to deal with the curse of perfectionism.

In conclusion, millions of people around the world struggle from the curse of perfectionism, and even the most mentally stable people are exposed to the risk of being overwhelmed by it. Perfection is a mental position/condition when people wish that everything and everyone in the world, including themselves, to be spotless and perfect.

One should always keep in mind that there are no perfect people in the world, and you are not unique in that respect.

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