Is Perfectionism Causing Your Mental Health Struggles?

Is Perfectionism Causing Your Mental Health Struggles?

Do you consider yourself to be a high-achiever? If yes, then you are highly likely to be a dedicated and determined individual who strives to succeed in all areas of life.

So far, so good, However, did you know that there is a very fine line between being a high-achiever and being a perfectionist? 

The latter of which can have a seriously detrimental effect on your overall mental health. 

Not sure which one you are? Keep reading to find out the main attributes of a perfectionist, plus learn the tell-tale signs that indicate your perfectionism is causing your mental health struggles.

What is a perfectionist?

The main difference between someone being a high-achiever and being a perfectionist is what drives them to succeed. A high-achiever is typically driven by the thought of success, whereas a perfectionist is powered by the worry of failure. 

During today’s uncertain times, a perfectionist is highly likely to be struggling even more with their mental wellbeing due to a lack of control surrounding not only their daily life but also their future. 

“The pursuit of perfection can exacerbate existing mental health disorders as well as lead to the development of new ones. Establishing a consistent routine and adopting self-care practices is the best way to keep unhealthy feelings at bay.” Mark Hayes, Head of Marketing, at Kintell, Personal Development Experts. 

5 Signs that you are a perfectionist  

If you are worried that your desire for perfection could be impacting your mental health, then it can be a good idea to look out for the below signs that may put you at a greater risk of health issues such as anxiety and depression.

  1. Nothing is ever good enough

If you feel that no matter what you do or what you achieve, it is still not good enough, then this is a strong indication that you are a perfectionist. 

  1. You don’t celebrate your successes

Even when you achieve one of your goals, you still sit and think about what you could have done better. 

  1. Mistakes are unforgivable 

Rather than view mistakes as an opportunity for personal growth, a perfectionist will only criticize themselves.

  1. You stay inside your comfort zone

You are so terrified of failure that you only accept challenges within your area of expertise and avoid stepping out of your comfort zone at all costs. 

  1. You feel under constant pressure

A perfectionist will be in a constant battle with themselves over their decisions and their motivations, with this pressure often becoming overwhelming. 

How to overcome perfectionism?

Although perfectionism is not a mental illness, it is a risk factor for other psychological disorders such as anxiety and depression. 

If your never-ending pursuit for perfection is having a negative effect on your mental health, there are several techniques that you can adopt to help you to overcome this affliction:

  • Set realistic goals and expectations 
  • Challenge negative thoughts
  • Say no more often 
  • Imagine the worst-case scenario 
  • Adjust your standards
  • Engage in positive self-talk 

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