When I misspelled perfectionist, I wondered should I add an extra f or extra t – and was about to change from f to t, when I realized that I was just being a perfectionist, which was just to ironic for this post.
Don’t get me wrong, doing a good job is super important. However, the energy exerted in being a perfectionist, hurts you for too many reasons. I was a perfectionist for many years – and probably am still in many ways – so let me share with you why I feel this is a bad habit and encourage you to stop.
First of all, there is no such thing as a perfectionist. You are just fooling yourself. Show me something you think is perfect, and I’ll shoot holes all over it. So you can try all you want to be perfect, but you won’t be, so why bother even trying.
When you are in perfectionist mode, you are allowing other people to define who you are, instead of allowing yourself to define yourself. Meaning that you are projecting how other people are viewing you and saying, if I change this people will see me as that. However, our goal for self acceptance is to not care what people think about us, and one great way to do that is not to enter perfectionist mode.
So how do you stop? First of all, stop taking yourself so seriously. Make some mistakes and watch how no one really cares, or stop paying attention to what people think of you all the time. Let the real you shine through, and start appreciating how people really love the real you.
I think you will quickly find that it won’t take long for you to see that people appreciate you for who you are, and that the failure for not being perfect isn’t a big deal at all. In fact you might even find that no one saw you as perfect anyways, it just was something you did that caused you angst, so why even bother trying?!
(Side note: Your resume and your interview/date suit should be 100% perfect. No exceptions.)