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Stop trying to be perfect

Trying to be perfect is trying for an unobtainable goal. The goal of achieving perfection stems from many sources. Maybe you were raised to meet others high expectations and were taught that imperfection equals failure. Maybe you use perfection to compensate for what you perceive as a deficit in your talents. It is also celebrated in our society and children are encouraged to study harder to achieve the perfect grades. However, being perfect is impossible and can negatively effect your life and productivity.

Perfectionism affects your productivity in four ways. First, it prevents you from getting things done because you are focusing on completing your task with zero errors. Second, it increases your stress level as those who pursue perfectionism usually experience anxiety. Anxiety can negatively affect your productivity. Third, it encourages procrastination. You may avoid difficult tasks that you know you cannot do perfectly. Fear of failure takes over. Fourth, perfectionism robs you of self-esteem. Being perfect is impossible and will only cause you to feel like a failure when you cannot achieve your goal.

What can you do to help you accept your imperfection?

-Change your focus from perfecting your work to finishing your work. Be patient with yourself as you try and change pre-programmed thinking.

-Ask yourself if your future goals will be achieved by pursuing perfection of a single task. Will that A on your exam really ensure that you will see a future job offer? Will a perfect spread sheet result in getting a raise? Focus on the whole of all your work instead of an individual perfect score.

-Create obstacles that prohibit your habit of perfectionism. If you see you are focusing on perfecting a task, get up and walk away for a breather and then go back to your task with a fresh perspective.

-Embrace your mistakes and use them as learning opportunities. Use these challenges as opportunities to learn and improve any work habits or ways to achieve your ultimate goal.

-Lastly, realistically state what is the worst possible outcome that will happen if you get a task completed and it is not perfect. Chances are you will be ok and all will be good.

10th Jul 2020 Tuc Team

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