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Perfectionist Behavior

Perfectionist behavior is a broad personality trait prevalent in today's generation. It is defined as a hypercritical relationship with one's self.

While setting high standards for oneself can be deemed as a positive quality, but perfectionism more or less assumes that we are flawed or defective.

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Perfectionism is killing us

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Perfectionism is a growing cultural phenomenon that has engulfed a large set of people including celebrities. Some of the causes are:

  • Modern parenting
  • Competitive economy
  • Consumerism and advertising
  • Social Media.

Social Media acts as the biggest culprit in amplifying perfectionism as youngsters can constantly compare their looks and their lives to others in easily measurable ways.

There is an increased expectation from our family and our peers to be perfect in all aspects of our lives.

Kinds of Perfectionism

Perfectionism comes in three types:

  • Self-Oriented Perfectionism: Demanding perfectionism from oneself.
  • Other-oriented Perfectionism: Demanding perfectionism from others.
  • Socially Prescribed Perfectionism: Feeling external pressure from the outside world to be perfect.

New research shows chronic perfectionism, the kind that doesn't go away as one gets older, leads to suicidal tendencies.

Early warning signs are when people start to take extraordinary or costly measures to hide distress or appear perfect.

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Perfectionists tend to keep tweaking their work endlessly. To counter that, you can create a checklist for each task.

With a checklist that reminds you to confirm what you’ve done, you needn’t endlessly slog. You’re following a process with discrete and measurable goals.

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Constant Mental Punishment

The trait of perfectionism constantly makes a person judge, compare and criticize suboptimal decisions or mistakes in any aspect of the daily routine.

A person starts having mental difficulties, striving to do everything the perfect way, but falling short eventually.

  • One’s achievement is closely related to the Striving (positive) aspect of perfectionism, where mastery of the task and learnings is kept in focus.
  • If one is unable to achieve their goals, it is often related to the Concern (negative) aspect of perfectionism, where the focus is ego, competition, defensiveness, and avoidance of failure.