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6 Reasons Why Perfectionism is Dangerous


Lifestyle Improvement

Posted On: Sep 08, 2016

6 Reasons Why Perfectionism is Dangerous

Many people consider themselves to be perfectionists. While this is a trait that can be beneficial in school and at work, it can cause major issues in other parts of our lives. It’s easy for perfectionists to write their behavior off as just part of their personality. They fail to see how perfectionism can be damaging to their happiness. Here are a few ways that perfectionism can be dangerous.

Perfectionism Means You’re Not Allowed to Fail

Part of being human is the fact that we aren’t perfect. We’ll all fail in one way or another at some point in our lives. While perfectionists know this, it’s hard for them to accept it. A perfectionist always expects the best out of themselves and sometimes has trouble accepting that they made a mistake. Instead of examining how they can grow from a failure, the person chooses to pretend it never happened instead.

Perfectionism Causes Procrastination

For many perfectionists, anything that can’t be done perfectly isn’t worth doing at all.  A perfectionist will procrastinate if they feel as though they can’t give a task their absolute best effort. This can be a good thing in some cases but there are plenty of situations in which this behavior can cause harm in their personal and professional lives.

Perfectionism Can Ruin Relationships

It’s easy for a perfectionist to expect others to live up to their unachievable standards. While many perfectionists don’t want to be hard on their partners, it can be difficult for them to differentiate between a valid and unrealistic expectation.

Perfectionism Causes Anxiety

Many people are able to accept a that they made a mistake and move on, but not the perfectionist. Some perfectionists experience severe anxiety about any slip-up or mishap no matter how small it is. These types of perfectionists will beat themselves up about a mistake and relive it over and over again instead of finding a way to prevent it from happening again.

Perfectionism Steals Your Joy

It’s really hard to be a happy person when you’re constantly concerned with the unachievable goal of being perfect. Perfectionists may have a hard time enjoying hobbies and activities because of fear of making a mistake. They may also become neurotic about an activity and obsess over it.

Perfectionism Means Missing Out

There are multiple social events someone may choose not to participate in because of their perfectionism. Being around new people or participating in a new activity can be stressful and cause social anxiety due to their need to appear perfect.

What Should I Do?

If you identify as a perfectionist and feel as though it’s taking a toll on our life, please seek professional help. The quality of your life shouldn’t suffer because of this issue and a therapist may be able to help you overcome it.