Julia Base, a successful businesswoman, coach, loving wife and mother, spoke about the dangers of perfectionism and what simple steps can help you get rid of it.
The desire to be the first in everything and always, to do everything better than others, paradoxically, often leads us to failures. The fear of not reaching the set high bar makes people give up, abandon any undertakings at the start. And the most unpleasant thing is that perfectionism does not allow you to truly enjoy life, since the result of any action will never be as good as an invented ideal.
What is the danger of perfectionism?
An excellent student's complex is only at first glance a harmless and even somewhat positive thing. In reality, people who are prone to a painful desire to do everything perfectly live in constant frustration, most of the time they experience anxiety and dissatisfaction with themselves. This is not only a life in constant stress, but also a very serious prerequisite for the development of severe neurosis and depression.
Where the excellent student's complex comes from is not difficult to guess: this is the result of parental education or assessments that other adults who are significant for him gave a person. Inadequate school performance, notorious comparisons with other children and lack of approval from adults make the child feel stronger in the idea that no one can love him without conditional "fives", honors diplomas and other achievements.
In fact, this is all the same inferiority complex that a person tries to cope with through a fanatical desire to be the first in everything. The problem is that it is not always possible to be the first, but if a person without psychological problems understands that this is normal, then a perfectionist perceives any mistake he makes extremely painful.
The tension and fear that comes with any endeavor, be it a new job or a relationship, over time begins to dominate other emotions. They become so strong that a person comes to avoid any undertakings.
Another important problem for people with an excellent student's complex is the painful perception of criticism, no matter who it comes from. The perfectionist strives to please everyone, which means he is doomed to constant disappointment. Such a model of behavior, such a way of evaluating oneself through the attitude of other people inevitably reduces the quality of life, but this is a problem that can and should be solved.
4 steps to getting rid of the excellent student complex
1. Work through your fears
To get rid of the fear of undertaking, make it a rule to gradually share the results of how you are progressing towards your goal. Each time you receive a positive response, the fear of making a mistake will decrease, and you will receive the necessary motivation for new actions.
2. Find a balance between “must” and “want”
Perfectionists rarely focus on their desires, their life is dominated by obligation, and they sacrifice their own interests to please others. This imbalance needs to be corrected by putting your “want” first. You need to move in this direction in very specific steps, allowing yourself to do what you did not allow before. Watch the show instead of cleaning, take a vacation, if you are tired, do small, but concrete actions, and over time the feeling of constant anxiety will go away.
3. Learn to delegate matters
The fear of entrusting other people with something because only you can do well is a ballast that needs to be thrown off. Responsibilities tend to accumulate, and sooner or later this snowball will crush you if you don't learn to trust others. This will not only free you from absolutely unnecessary problems, but will also improve your relationships with others.
4. A mistake is not a disaster
Think about what will happen if you do something wrong, make a mistake. Simulate several situations that make you feel anxious. Now think about the consequences, what are they? In most cases, nothing bad will happen as a result of your mistakes. Work through these situations and concentrate as much as possible on the thought that all these fearful mistakes are just little things that you and the people around you can afford. Excessive demands on ourselves are what prevents us from enjoying life. Relax your self-criticism a little, and you will see that you have missed really important moments in life while pursuing unrealistic goals.
Text: Julia Bays