Who is a Perfectionist?
Perfectionism is a tendency to aim for the best and to refuse anything less. Perfectionism is often characterized by certain qualities that are noticeable to everyone. Perfectionists are never satisfied with their current situation. They are always motivated and have an incredible aptitude for spotting opportunities for improvement. If you are reading this article and you realize that you fit the aforementioned description, then it is most likely that you are a perfectionist. Another way to know that you are a perfectionist is if you have been described as a perfectionist by two or more persons in the last one month.
Perfectionism is a very complex trait that harbors both positivity and negativity. Being a perfectionist makes you predisposed to certain likable and enviable traits. Perfectionists are leaders, goal-getters, adaptable, progressive and they do not tolerate mediocrity. While perfectionists have all of these lovable traits, it should also be noted that perfectionism has its setbacks too. A perfectionist can very easily be predisposed to negative traits such as being antisocial, timid, depressed, disgruntled, competitive and difficult.
It is clear that perfectionism has two opposite side to it. Perfectionism could mean pursuing your dreams and giving your best in each of your undertakings, or it could mean being critically judgmental on yourself, discontent with self and eventual rejection of self. In a world where there are so many opportunities and uncertainties, it becomes crucial to explore the nature of perfectionism and to see if it is actually beneficial or damaging to be a perfectionist. For us to give a verdict on perfectionism, let us first explore its upsides and downsides.
Upsides of perfectionism
The upsides of perfectionism are the constant desire to be better. Positive perfectionism aims to do better in every pursuit and to give the best in every situation. Positive perfectionism is motivated, driven and adaptable. Positive perfectionism rejects mediocrity. Contained below are the perks that come with being a perfectionist.
Hard work and dedication: Perfectionists are usually hardworking and dedicated. Perfectionists are dedicated to the achievement of set goals and they will remain undeterred until they accomplish it. This trait is by far one of the most enviable features of a perfectionist.
Resilience and tenacity: It is quite common to find that perfectionists are actually very resilient. They can push their mental and physical capabilities to the furthest limits. This trait is particularly relevant when faced with difficult situations.
Leadership: Perfectionist can be great leaders because they will give the best of themselves to their followers. More importantly, they are always motivated which is a key leadership trait.
Progressive and successful: Being a perfectionist means that your chance of being successful is very high. You have a tendency to give your best and in most cases, that is all you require. Perfectionists look for ways to improve the status-quo. Perfectionist is quick to embrace new innovations and new ideas that will further their goals and facilitate the attainment of their pursuits.
The downsides of perfectionism
On the flip side, being a perfectionist has some very dangerous disadvantages. While it is hard to ascertain whether the perks of being a perfectionist outweigh its disadvantages, we will find out once we are done enumerating its numerous downsides. Most times, perfectionists tend to suffer greatly from lack of content, as they always dwell on their flaws instead of their strengths. Being a perfectionist also presents feelings of depression, self-hate, and dejection. It is only expected that when you are too preoccupied chasing goals and brooding over your failures instead of enjoying your accomplishments that you will wind up feeling emotionally drained and sad. Sometimes, a perfectionist will embark on endeavors that are completely out of reach. They may not have the skill set or resources to make a pursuit a reality, but they will judge themselves harshly and unfairly when they fail in the undertaking. According to professional analysis, contained below are some of the downsides of perfectionism:
Inclination towards harsh self-judgment: A perfectionist is often inclined towards the dangerous path of harsh and disparaging self-judgment. While it okay to introspect and give an honest evaluation of yourself, the perfectionist takes this process to a whole new height or in better terms, a whole new depth. The perfectionist will condemn himself badly. He will disregard all of his efforts and gains while focusing solely on mistakes and flaws.
Lethargy: we explored the fact that perfectionist has an inclination towards being motivated and hardworking. However, the opposite could also happen to a perfectionist. A perfectionist may also exhibit signs of being lethargic and lazy. This happens because they have a “perfect picture” of how things should be in their head. They may become inactive and unable to act because they feel like the situation isn’t ideal enough.
Lack of content: While discontentment may seem like a trivial matter, it actually has very shocking ramifications on your health and entire quality of life. You will rarely find a perfectionist that is content. Consequently, perfectionists are often victims of emotional turmoil, sadness, and uncertainty.
Dwell on their shortcomings: Being a perfectionist often makes people focus on their shortcomings and flaws. Instead of looking at their strengths, they simply dwell on what they do not have. I contend that widespread perfectionism is the fuel that has propelled the cosmetic surgery industry to staggering heights. There are individuals that have had innumerable cosmetic surgery procedures in the elusive pursuit of a “perfect body”.
Being excessively competitive: Perfectionists are often times highly competitive. While it is okay to be competitive, it is completely different when you feel you must win all the time.
Fear and excessive introspection: Perfectionists often come off as “uptight.” The reasons for this are because they are always thinking and second-guessing situations. Fear and excessive introspection are some negative habits that come with being a perfectionist. Often times, these traits cause lethargy.
After exploring the perks and disadvantage of perfectionism, it is very hard to ascertain whether perfectionism is in fact, good or bad. While there are two sides to the coin called perfections, we can always learn ways to improve the upsides perfectionism while lowering its downsides.Ways to improve the upsides of perfectionism and decrease its downsides:
– Dwell on your accomplishment and celebrate them
– Take up new challenges that are within your reach
– Adopt a positive ideology towards life and pursuits
– Change your perception of the failure
– See life from a lighter perspective
– Have a life outside your work and pursuits. Hobbies and leisurely pursuits will help
-Learn to love yourself
It is imperative that you love yourself and this means that you must love your perfectionism too. Perfectionism is a very advantageous trait. It makes you enthusiastic, formidable and resilient. However, you should learn to appreciate life and enjoy diversions. Learn from your mistakes and move on to new. Finally, always think of the world as your playground.