The roots of destructive perfectionism - Deepstash

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The roots of destructive perfectionism

A possible explanation of why people develop unhealthy perfectionism is that they grow up without a sense of support, safety, and nurturing. Another reason can be a reaction to childhood trauma or extreme cultural expectations, where appearing perfect is a strategy for survival.

The consequence of destructive perfectionism is often deep-seated emotional difficulties and unresolved traumatic experiences that might eventually turn into a potentially severe depression.

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If you believe you are an unhealthy perfectionist and that it could be masking your own deep-rooted emotional problems, the following stages can benefit you.

  1. Adopting such a rigid commitment that if you fail, you'll quit.
  2. Beginning with a goal that's too hard or too big.
  3. Going at your goal alone without accepting help.
  4. Dealing with the fear and shame of giving up your persona.

Constructive or healthy perfectionism is a personality trait that is associated with finding enjoyment and fulfilment from doing things well. The focus is process-oriented, where you learn from your mistakes.

Becoming aware of your perfectionism can be very complicated because you've convinced yourself that your perfectionist traits are normal and not a problem. It is good to understand that not everyone is like this.

  1. Your perfectionism is fueled by a constant, critical inner voice of intense shame or fear.
  2. You demonstrate an excessive sense of responsibility and look for solutions.
  3. You are unable to accept and express painful emotions.
  4. You dismiss or discount abuse or trauma.

You might be more aware of your own vulnerability and tendency to withdraw. However, if you don't connect with and process your emotional hurt, anger or sadness, they will govern your life.

Rules and beliefs interact. Your beliefs are something you accept to be true. Your rules govern your behaviour. Your rules can limit or expand your beliefs.

Seeing the positive results from the efforts you are making in dealing with destructive perfectionism will give you hope.

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