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5 Psychological Strategies To Ease The Stress Of Perfectionism

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by Emylee Modestino
Contributing Author, Conscious Reminder

Do you every time doubt your efforts? Or your achievements always fall short of your expectations? Then you might be suffering from unhealthy perfectionism. Have you ever tried to live the life of an average? Do what you love to without expecting success, glories or praises from others?

We humans living in a competitive society are so obsessed with comparison and achievement that we want to be perfect in everything we do. But isn’t it ok to be average in phases of life? Well, it is great that you wish to prove your excellence in whatever you do, but if you are not great in one thing doesn’t mean that you have failed in it. Opposite of perfect is not the failure. For example, a student who scored 90 out of 100 may not be able to strike a perfect score but that doesn’t mean he is not good in the subject or his knowledge is little. It is time that you come out of the flawed perspective that you need to be perfect.

The screwed notions of being perfect have made it all confusing and irrational. We are looking for perfectionism in everything, such that perfectionism has become our second nature and we cannot do without it. But isn’t it that we are expecting too much from ourselves. It is good to challenge yourself but criticizing yourself for coming short of your expectations or neglecting the small achievements is not good for your physical and mental well-being. The stress of being perfect can be derogatory.

Not aware of your perfectionist mindset? Here is how you can assess yourself.

The fear of not succeeding always engulfs you

You are ever dissatisfied with whatever you have achieved

You are always looking for the right moment to do something

You tend to care about small mistakes that have little impact on the bigger scenario

You neglect self-care for the sake of achievements

If the points mentioned above sound familiar, then you are living with an unhealthy perfectionist mindset which can be stressful and make your existence difficult. Here are a few strategies that can help you out in overcoming the stress of perfectionism. These focus on helping you out in accepting who you are.

Strategies to ease the stress of perfectionism

1. Befriend what you don’t love

Criticizing imperfections is leading you nowhere. No one is perfect. There might be things that you don’t like about yourself, but you must accept and befriend them. Instead of criticizing yourself about them, take them with an open heart. Learn what purpose they serve in your life and try to befriend them. This way you can ease your anxiety  arising out of those things, and you can focus on healing them or molding them to your advantage.

2. It is OK to be average

While growing up in a competitive world, it has always been stressed upon that being average is not good. As such we have always found the word “average” to be insulting. But is it really so? It is just that we are associating our self-worth with it. It is just impossible to be perfect in everything you do. You might be good at some things and average at others, and that is normal. Performing average in one thing has nothing to do with your self-worth.  Accept it instead of viewing it as an insult and move on to excel in other things. You need not excel in a job because you feel incomplete without it, but you should strive for excellence for the love and passion for it.

3. Shift your focus from all-or-nothing fallacy

Perfectionism is a result of all-or-nothing fallacy. Tying your self-worth to your achievements is a flawed measure. If such is a case, then every little failure can undermine your confidence and self-esteem. You need to rise above this black and white thinking. In reality, success is not that black and white. If you haven’t succeeded in a thing, it doesn’t mean that all your efforts have become irrelevant and you should throw your lessons out of the window instead whatever you have learned in the process molds you to become a better person. Change your perspective and learn to take in the maximum from your journey irrespective of whether you achieved your goal or not.

4. Befriend what you don’t know

People with a perfectionist mindset wish to have control over everything, even the outcomes. They are anxious about the results and want everything to come out the way they want. If it doesn’t, they doubt their worth and fear that others will look at them as incompetent. But can you have control over the outcomes? No. So, why you should stress out on them? Learn to be comfortable with the unknown. It not only relieves you of the stress but the disappointment arising out of things not working out as you thought. Enjoy the journey, put in your best efforts without needing to control the outcome.

5. Correct your measure of success

Well, being successful is a productive thought, but your scale of measuring the success can be at default. People tend to measure their progress with others which is natural to their competitive nature. But making that comparison as the scale of their success is incorrect. Comparing your success with that of others can leave you disappointed as you are examining two different lives that have had a completely different journey. Instead of comparing your journey with others, compare it with yourself. View your success from your accomplishments, contributions and challenges faced. In this manner, your success will become more meaningful.

We as human beings are flawed, and we need to accept that. Nothing is perfect in this world. Accept your incredible powers and learn to enjoy the journey rather than just focusing on success or failure. You as an individual are more than your achievements, and nothing can change that.

About the Author: Emylee is a freelance content writer and a blogger who is specialized in home remedies, natural cure and power yoga.  She is a nature enthusiast who contributed her piece of work for many website like www.howtocure.com. In her free time you can find her in adventurous trips and hanging out with family and friends.

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