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The Curse Of Perfectionism


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I've been thinking through this so much lately..

I'm a a perfectionist and it's been ******* me slowly past these years. I'm always unhappy and angry at myself because of every little thing I do wrong. I'm overly cautious for little things like trying not to behave even slightly in an arrogant way.. It's a curse because I end up going in circles, always hating myself and never getting over my little "mistakes". It's like trying to prove myself to myself time and time again, and always being judged. What should I do? Every response is appreciated, thanks.

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Hi Onelightburning

I'm the exact same, I don't know how to tackle it, just wanted to let you know you're not alone. I suppose we have to see these perfectionist judgements of ourselves for what they are and go easy on ourselves a little- maybe use mindfulness to help us see them as just thoughts and enable us to let them go. Hopefully someone will have some good advice for us!

Best wishes

Firkin

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I am a real perfectionist too. I have extrememly high expectations for myself. Like you I'm always unhappy and hating myself. I get also dissapointed all the time. I always am so hard on myself, everything that goes wrong I take the blame for. Everyone knows am this way and I'm just really annoying to work with because I want everything my way, I just want the control because I can feel safe then. I don't know.. Anyways I don't know how to tackle it, but well your definitely not alone in this if that helps.

Edited by Broken_girl
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I understand. I used to hate a lot of things when things go wrong. And the last on the list I'll hate is myself. It's a terrible feeling. I'm a perfectionist too and I highly suspect it's due to my OCD that's why I have a need to pay special attention to details or it'll drive me nuts.

There isn't much advice I can give since I'm not a professional, but being through something similar before, I'll want to say to not judge yourself so harshly. You don't have to worry too much about what others think. Because they probably spend as much time as you do thinking about how others will judge them too. Try not to be too harsh with yourself, appreciate the small things that come by in life everyday. :)

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I think like carroty says, I think a lot of it is rooted in what OTHER people think and it's not your desire to do something well that's the problem, more over your fear of it going wrong or not as good as before. Try for CBT for this kind of thing, it's not easy, I'm still a perfectionist about a lot of things but I get angry (with myself and other people) a lot less than I used to now

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I'm a perfectionist too, but only when it comes to myself. I'm able to hold others to a reasonable standard but I have to be the best at all times. I suppose I feel my best isn't very good to begin with, so anything below that is beyond unacceptable. I rarely feel good enough and my self esteem is in the gutter. I need to try harder to treat myself the way I treat others when they're not at their best.

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Your not alone in this, I always want every little thing to be perfect and if one thing goes wrong I'll flip out.

Then I'll go on a venting spree thinking that every little thing I do is wrong and it always ends up leaving me feel helpless in the end.

For me I always try very hard to let things go if things are not perfect, but it's easier said than done.

Just wanted to let you know that you're not alone. :hugs:

Edited by FlyLikeAButterfly
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Guest NotYet

I am the same way. I don't hold others to my standards but I'm very hard on myself. I don't really understand it except that I see mistakes as "inefficient" and I have to be as efficient as possible with everything or it seriously bothers me. I don't know if that's an OCD thing or not. I've mellowed out some in the last year since I started taking a lot of vitamin supplements but I have a feeling this kind of thought pattern isn't something I can really change.

The worst part for me is fear of tackling a difficult task because its inevitable that I will make mistakes. I usually end up making a lot of contingency plans for each anticipated mistake. Sometimes if something is going really poorly I will sort of short-circuit and stop caring about mistakes since efficiency is a lost cause, but if I'm not careful I'll get sloppy and compound the problem.

Perfection is a worthy goal but its impossible.

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i was criticized endlessly when i was a kid, so i learned to criticize just the same... others & myself. when you live with negativity, you learn it well. i can't stand happy optimists who tell you to change your attitude, since it's almost like a zebra losing its stripes.

i think perfectionism goes hand-in-hand with the critical attitude. i wish it was only me that i criticized! but i look around & it looks pretty dang crappy, within & around...

& i do the same thing, go over "mistakes" again & again & again... i look back constantly to stupid ways i've messed up my life, even though i know i was doing pretty much the only thing i could do at that time. i kick myself constantly for not knowing what the future would bring.

boy, i feel like such a sad sack!

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Guest NotYet

i was criticized endlessly when i was a kid, so i learned to criticize just the same... others & myself. when you live with negativity, you learn it well. i can't stand happy optimists who tell you to change your attitude, since it's almost like a zebra losing its stripes.

I had the same experience. Something funny about it is that the family member who was most critical of me would criticize me for being critical of other people. "Do as I say, not as I do."

Changing attitudes is really hard and frightening because you lose part of yourself. Even if its a part of you that you don't like. You sort of have to get to know you again and its uncomfortable, especially as it will change the relationships with people around you.

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I truly, TRULY believe that perfection doesnt exist, not anywhere for anyone. Even if some concept of divine perfection exists I don't think humans are capable of fully grasping it. I find the idea very comforting, what a terrible world it would be if we were all ranked and judged against impossible standards. Getting rid of that single value that defines everything lets you see beauty in unconventional places. There is nothing wrong with wanting to improve your life or yourself but if you're constantly being judged against an impossible standard it would be pretty easy to fall into despair.

Now, I am DEFINITELY not a paragon of self-love and acceptance but I dont really struggle with that word "perfect". So, I guess i just wanted to add that its hard but its possible to let go.

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