My Struggle with Perfectionism and How I’m Overcoming It

If you were a self-aware perfectionist, you would understand my struggle. Why self-aware? Well, some perfectionists are not even aware they’re driving themselves and others crazy. They probably don’t even realize that their circle of friends is getting smaller.
Perfectionism is a double-edged sword. It can be a good thing. You wouldn’t want, say a mediocre surgeon performing surgery on you or an “I don’t give a tiny rat ass if I dig my nose when I’m cooking” chef handling your food. However, too much of it can prevent you from getting a lot of things done. Instead of making things happen, you just wait around until the time is right or when you can finally produce a “masterpiece.” More often than not, the perfect moment never comes.
My perfectionism has gotten worse since I left employment to run my own business. To make matters worse, I’m quite obsessive compulsive as well. I would want everything done perfectly in the matter of hours. If I want to re-design my 300 over product image displays on the website to make it better, I would want it to be done within a day. When the day turns to night, I would get anxiety because I’m not even half way done. We talk about the importance of setting goals. While it’s helpful, a perfectionist like myself will tend to set unrealistic goals.
People closest to me would know that I’ve been blogging since 2009 but found very little success with it mostly due to my obsessive needs to keep re-organizing and re-construct the whole blog. Whenever I have my mind set on certain topics I want to cover, sooner than later, I would change my mind. I always want to do more but I end up doing less.
Perfectionism can lead to procrastination. I procrastinate because I don’t think what I do is good enough. I always have these excuses playing in my mind that my designs are horrible, my grammar sucks, my stories aren’t interesting and the list goes on. So, I ended up with folders of “half-baked” materials that I never publish for all to see.
After years of running my own business, I’m still not satisfied with where I am now. I think I could do better if only I strive for progress instead of perfection. I couldn’t tell you how I overcome this struggle because it’s an ongoing journey but I’m definitely taking steps forward.

3 Reminders I Set for Myself

  1. Strive for progress, not perfection. I’m going to move forward with the goals I set without waiting around for the right time or the right people to come along.
  2. Stop overthinking. It’s no use playing the worst-case scenarios in my head over and over again when there’s a 98% chance that it won’t even happen.
  3. It’s okay to make mistakes. Exactly what’s the worse that could happen right? Well, I could die. But I haven’t come across people who died from embarrassment. It’s all psychological. Nothing a strong mind couldn’t handle.
If you’re also struggling with perfectionism and want to talk to someone about it, you can get in touch with me in Facebook. I don’t have much to offer at this point but at least together we can figure it out.
Oh, if you’re a grammar Nazi, please give me your best shot. This is one of the things that held me back from writing full time. I’m terrified of butchering my grammar.

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