Why perfectionism kills wellbeing?

What is perfectionism?

​Perfectionism is a personality trait characterized by a person’s:

  • Pursuit of flawlessness​
  • Setting exceedingly high standards​
  • Striving for impeccability​
  • Tending to focus on minor mistakes / imperfections​

It is accompanied by being overly critical of self and others.


Why Perfectionism Kills Wellbeing?

Perfectionism can have negative consequences. Let’s look at some them, related to our wellbeing.​

Stress and anxiety

​Stress that it’s never enough. Sometimes it’s related to procrastination adn avoidance.

Procrastination and avoidance

A person is so worried about the outcome that doesn’t do the job at all.

Self-criticism and negative self-talk

A person thinks he or she is not enough.

Social isolation

Person tries to work on the task so hard that isolates colleagues from doing it.​


Doing things alone with the pressure of being perfect can lead to burnout.


Where Does Perfectionism Come From?

Symptoms above might be familiar to many people. But why did some people develop perfectionism and other not? ​What does perfectionism come from? Some psychologists will look for the roots in childhood, others in neurological constructions and so on. Reasons may very. Some of them are:

  • High standards and expectations
  • Fear of failure
  • Need of control
  • Black and white thinking
  • Difficulty torelating uncertainty
  • Correlates with OCD disorder

Ways to Keep Perfectionism Under Control

It is certainly important to learn to keep your perfectionism under control. It can be learned!​

Here are some ideas on how to do it:

  1. Practice self-compassion
  2. Set realistic goals
  3. Celebrate progress, not just achievement
  4. Practice mindfulness
  5. Seek support
  6. Read


​And when it comes to reading, we can recommend some books that will help you overcome perfectionism.


Overcoming Perfectionism – A Gamechanger?

Overcoming perfectionism can bring many benefits to you, your wellbeing and your environment​. Take a look at the key advantages! 

  • Improved productivity
  • Increased creativity and innovation
  • Better teamwork and collaboration
  • Improved decision-making
  • Reduced stress
  • Increased well-being

So… Do you think it’s worth it?


Perfectionism is not the same thing as striving to be your best. Perfectionism is the belief that if we live perfect, look perfect, and act perfect, we can minimize or avoid the pain of blame, judgment, and shame. It’s a shield. It’s a twenty-ton shield that we lug around thinking it will protect us when, in fact, it’s the thing that’s really preventing us from flight.

“The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are” by Brené Brown



If you want to learn more about this topic, check the full webinar: Why Perfectionism Kills Wellbeing?


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Photo by Samantha Gades on Unsplash