Voltaire: The perfect is the enemy of the good.
Many clients identify perfectionism as a major issue. Whether they are high achievers or afraid to try and fail, they can never accomplish enough. Often trying hard to please others, they don't feel as if they can give enough satisfaction. Demanding much of themselves, some perfectionists also expect a lot from other people. Consequently, they frequently find themselves dissatisfied with their relationships. Even if they don't expect nearly as much from others as they do from themselves, they are frequently disappointed, at least in themselves because of high self-criticism.
In spite of the awareness that such high standards are causing problems, it doesn't seem right to lower them. After all, shouldn't everyone give their all and try to be the best that they can be? Don't others admire those who strive? Doesn't perfectionism insure success? Shouldn't imperfections be hidden?
However, the continuous pressure can be overwhelming and give rise to depression and relationship issues (Hewitt et al., 2015). . "A key hypothesis from mood science is that our cultural epidemic of low mood results from people becoming fixated in the pursuit of unattainable goals (Rottenberg, 2014, p. 23). In addition, perfectionists, especially those whose work requires precision, are at an increased risk for suicide (In brief, 2014, p. 19).
If you see perfectionism as an issue for you and want to explore it with me, please CONTACT ME. The collaborative work offered by psychotherapy may help modulate the perfectionism.
Hewitt, P. L., Mikail, S. F., Flett, G. L., Tasca, G. A., Flynn, C. A., Deng, X., Kaldas, J., & Chen, C. (2015). Psychodynamic/interpersonal group psychotherapy for perfectionism: Evaluating the effectiveness of a short-term treatment. Psychotherapy, 52(), 205-217.
In brief, (2014). Monitor on Psychology, 45(10), 19.
Rottenberg, J. (2014). The depression epidemic: Can mood science save us? Psychotherapy Networker, 38(6), 18-24 & 46-47.