Why is Perfectionism So Unhealthy for Your Well Being?

Perfectionism.  What is it?  When I think of perfectionism, I tend to think of it as a negative thing.  But being a perfectionist, myself makes me a little biased.  I’m such a perfectionist I will rewrite my class notes ten times because I don’t like the way my handwriting looks. Or I will redo a homework assignment that I just spent an hour completing. One might think “oh, being a perfectionist that’s a good thing“An overachiever!  What’s wrong with that?”  I’m here to tell you being a perfectionist is a lot more than just wanting the best for yourself. 

Research studies have actually found that perfectionists have an increased chance of developing bipolar or anxiety disorder.  The relation between mental health problems and perfectionism is fairly close.

So, how can we eliminate striving to be absolutely perfect?  For a long time, I thought there was no hope for me.  And don’t get me wrong I still am a perfectionist.  But I am definitely a lot less intense. This was due to my relationship with God strengthening. Nowadays, if I don’t meet my impractical goals or if I am not happy with something, I try not to have such a preposterous reaction. It is still really difficult for me not to rewrite my school notes after the first draft or to not try to control an event or project so it’s perfect.  I now ask myself “in a year from now am I going to want to remember trying to plan events to a tee or am I going to want to remember all of the happy moments that were not controlled?”  The answer: I want to remember the happy moments. I also ask myself why I set these impossible standards for myself to be perfect? When I’m not perfect and that’s okay.  The only perfect person to walk this earth was Jesus Christ.  I would like to leave you with this.  If you are anything like me, next time your perfectionist tendencies try to control the way you react, try not to be so hard on yourself.  Remember that it’s great to have goals but make sure they don’t pass the line!  You weren’t meant to be perfect so stop trying to be.