How Is Perfectionism Holding Me Back?

How Is Perfectionism Holding Me Back?

In our culture, perfectionism is a socially glorified mindset that comes with a lot of baggage. It helps us reach goals, move forward in our schooling and careers, and prevent error.

Does it help us think intuitively? Take risks? Use our creative gifts? Cultivate our strengths?

The hidden costs of perfectionism are disguised as an insurance policy against failure.

It may keep us safe, but safety keeps us from experiencing the discomfort and risk needed for growth. We procrastinate the task that would be too crushing for us to screw up.

We withhold ideas and creativity for fear of looking silly or messy. We spend up our energy making every detail perfect and miss out on connecting with the present moment.

The alternative to perfect is “good enough”. Good enough is the sweet spot of using our talents well, without confining outcomes to rigid standards.

Good enough offers a chance to breathe, and redirect our energy away from perfection to intuition and growth.

Watch other videos in our Psych in 60 series to learn more about perfectionism and leave your questions in the comments below!

Click here for more content by Elise Howell, LPCA!

Elise Howell, LPCA
Elise's passion is to collaborate with teen girls and their families in navigating the unpredictable years of adolescence, and supporting women in cultivating healthy relationships with their whole selves. She engages with clients' strengths to help clients process their stories, build skills to move them towards their goals, and reconnect with what’s most important to them in life. When she is not watching classic romantic comedies, Elise enjoys kayaking, hiking, and beach days with her husband. She loves all things Harry Potter and musical theater.


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