When Perfection Get’s me in Trouble

I often struggle with the need to be perfect in everything that I do in life. My blog has to be perfect. Everything has its place and every blog post must follow certain guidelines. It has to be perfect in every way. My writing is like that too. And yet, I am far from perfect.

Where does this need come from? I always feel out of sorts when my life isn’t perfect. Since that I always, it makes me laugh that I always feel like I have to be perfect. Take being a student. Since I started my Bachelor’s degree I have received only one grade lower than an A. That should be good right? It’s not. I often feel like I have to do more and be more perfect. Write the perfect paper. Write the perfect discussion board each week.

Right now, I am going amazing in both Statistics and my Literature class. Still, I stress I am not doing enough each day and that I have to do better. I have to be perfect.

I felt bad this week (it is only Tuesday) that I am falling behind on writing interview feature articles. My list of people who have done their part by answering my questions, I that I have failed them by taking so long. I will get to each person in time but it stressed about it.

I am super busy at the moment. I am of course a full-time student with a full course load every eight weeks. I have this blog. Thank god I have contributor writers if not there would be enough time to write content. I try to answer every comment that I can but even that is getting to be too much. I am working on my memoir, and its a very big task. I took a big freelance project, and while I am moving along at a great pace, I still feel as if I could do more.

I am having to decide each day what is important and things are slipping. I still want to be perfect.

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I am so busy seeking perfection that I realized something today. No matter what I do nothing is ever perfect. There will always be days where I have to take a break. I have such lofty plans for my summer, that the need to work myself to exhaustion each day. It comes from my need to be perfect.

It has always been there. I often talk to my therapist about it in my sessions and she always tells me I need to take more breaks. That I need to realize that I can’t be perfect each day. My need to be the best writer I can be, and be perfect, well that can’t be attainable in the sense that I want it to. I need to give myself credit for what I have done. Which is a lot of great things lately.

Can we achieve perfection? I would say no. Things will happen as they do. One day I will find a way to beat my obsession with perfection. Before it get’s me into trouble with my mental health.

J.E. Skye

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoAndré Sanano

unsplash-logoKunj Parekh

 

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45 Replies to “When Perfection Get’s me in Trouble”

  1. I grew up in a family full of perfectionists. As a kid, you weren’t praised if it wasn’t perfect. You were told the flaws in whatever it was you had done.

    I also want to be perfect. It is a pain in the butt, however, I’ve learned to give myself a break. My parents sure weren’t perfect! Looking at all you are doing, I would say you are doing far too much. I went to university; I know how much work and study is involved. Of course, my memory is shit, so I had to study for hours and hours.

    It is really exciting to take courses at university. It opened up a whole new world for me. I hope you are enjoying some of it.

    1. I am. I am so close to the end of my school journey at least for my bachelors degree. I am starting my Masters after I graduate so I am going to stay busy.

  2. I hear you in this one. My workable solution became to redefine perfect. Redefine it based on observations and research on overall human behavior. For example the way to learn is to make mistakes. If you don’t make mistakes you haven’t learned anything, you just got incredibly lucky many times in a row. Therefore now making mistakes becomes part of the criteria for perfection. If I’m never doing something wrong, erring, then I can never be perfect. And so on. It’s about reframing. I still have days where I shift into binary all or nothing thinking but redefining perfect has really helped me personally.

    1. Redefining sounds like something I can do. You make so much sense in my head but sometimes I let it become who I am. The “all or nothing” thinking is all too familiar in my life. Thank you so much for your comment, for reading my post, and sharing this with me.

      1. It’s a work in progress, we all are. Take care 🙂

  3. I’m a perfectionist, as well. My therapist told me, and I try to remember, to achieve progress, not perfection.

  4. In my youth I wouldn’t try anything is I couldn’t be perfect at it. It kept me from trying some wonderful things. I am better now but still work at it.

    1. I think it started as a young man for me. I always had to be the best and perfect at what I did. I can think of a million times that I thought I was. It takes me looking back to see my arrogance.

  5. I got over trying to be perfect at about age 40. I’m so far from perfect now it’s not even funnt! Actually it is. I don’t want to be perfect anymore.

  6. I was once told by no one that perfection is a journey.

    P.S. You mispelled and made a lot of grammatical errors in this entry.

      1. Haha that’s alright. The devil’s advocate in me just wanted to point out the irony.

      2. It’s good. It’s good to know no matter how I try I still make mistakes. No ones perfect right?

  7. Some people talk about being a perfectionist like it’s a good thing. For me perfectionism can be debilitating. There are so many things I have been afraid to even attempt for fear of not being perfect. I stress myself out over simple tasks. I overthink everything. It gets ridiculous. I’m still learning to give myself a break. Nobody can do everything perfectly. If we constantly strive to be perfect we will constantly be miserable.

  8. It’s good to know that you still make time to visit blogs especially mine even if you’re busy. I hope you take time to relax also. Have a great day always! ❤️

  9. Never underestimate the power of taking deep breaths before, during, and after tasks. I can relate to this post in a lot of ways my friend. Just remember that you are most important and you take priority over tasks. You are in control and you’ve got this!

  10. There’s nothing wrong with demanding perfection from oneself, so long as we don’t get too caught up in having everything too perfect, to the point, that we can’t stand the slightest details out of place in our live, that it’d, caused us to not sleep well at night…just do the best you can in things, and that, would be, your own “perfetion”, no matter what, besides, nobody else can ask anything else of you…

  11. I have the same issues hence it leading to body dysmorphia but as a child I had to work hard to be liked and loved and it then lead to other issues. I know exactly how you feel and you know what it’s okay not be perfect we are humans and not a single person In the world is perfect. ❤️

  12. James, I admire your honesty and I’m glad you recognize the possible treats to your mental health if you continue to obsess about perfection too much. Perfection is in the eye of the beholder. The reality is we can’t please everyone and we should not have to. Our objective should therefore be, to always aim to do OUR best at any given time based on our skills, experience, knowledge and effort. Taking pleasure and satisfaction in knowing that we have given our best because anything less than that would be imperfection. Hope this helps. Have a great day! 🙂

      1. Great! Have a wonderful week and remember deep breaths and pace yourself. You are awesome so don’t you forget it! 😊

      1. I’ve been trying to implement time management skills just so after a certain amount of time, regardless of how “perfect” it is, I can’t spend any more time on it!

  13. I can relate to this. It’s 2:30am and I still feel like I’m hours from going to bed, but in truth I should be asleep by now! I know that I’m one of the ones that have contributed and there’s something coming I’m sure but there’s a lot on my plate at the moment. For my blog sometimes I can simply say “Y’all I’m tired if this makes no sense I apologize” but to be posted somewhere by someone else that I respect and value as a writer — I hold myself to an even higher standard. I know that we strive for perfection in all that we do, but is the strive for perfection worth the cost of your mental stability? I’m not offering you answers. Just sending a question out there tonight as I struggle with this myself from time to time.

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