Therapy for Perfectionists – Are you a perfectionist?

8 Signs That You Struggle With Perfectionism and Why Therapy for Perfectionists Would Help You Feel Less Anxious and Stressed:

Perfectionism is a personality trait where an individual is constantly striving to be and do things perfectly, they have extremely high (generally unattainable) standards, and struggle to accept anything less what they believe is perfect.

  1. Black and white thinking- Do you find yourself in a thought rut? Are things either black and white, good or bad, right or wrong? For example, you think “this is wrong” instead of thinking “this one part needs some help but the rest seems good enough.” If you are going to do something, it has to be done just right. If you know that it is not going to be perfect, you’re not going to do it.
  2. Procrastination- Do you wait until it’s the perfect moment to do things, have conversations, or get something done? Have you found yourself just stuck in this “waiting space”? Fear of failure can keep you permanently stuck. If you can’t do something perfectly, there is no point in even trying.
  3. Super High Personal Standards- You tend to set very high goals and expectations for yourself because always want to do your very best. When you put your mind, focus, and energy into achieving or accomplishing something, you will do it, and do it well! However, the path to success is usually ridden with extreme consequences, such as sacrificing sleep, relationships, eating choices, exercise, or health. These consequences may result in feeling very stressed out, exhausted, or frustrated.
  4. Self-defeating judgmental thoughts- You are your own worst critic. If you make a mistake, you are endlessly and tirelessly hard on yourself, you replay your actions in your head like a broken record, or constantly beat yourself up over and over again. Even if you did something amazing and awesome, you still obsess over small mistakes and what you could have done better.
  5. Depression- All of the above mentioned things can lead to you getting stuck in a very negative head space that can lead to depression.
  6. Low self-esteem/self-worth – Self-defeating thoughts, being highly self-critical, procrastinating, all of these can lead to becoming depressed, isolating, and having low self-esteem or self-worth.
  7. Lack of trust in others- In regards to getting things done, you usually just do everything yourself. Perfectionists abhor teamwork and group projects, they prefer to just get tasks done by themselves.
  8. Keep projects and work hidden- Even though you’ve spent countless hours working on a project, book, paper, article, website, blog, art piece, etc you struggle to share it with others because it is not perfect yet.

Final Thoughts:

I hope this post helps you be more informed about perfectionism. If you identify with these characteristics, you may struggle with perfectionism and may benefit from therapy for perfectionists. If you are curious about starting the therapy process, feel free connect for a complimentary virtual consultation; you can read more about how I can help here.

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Hi, I’m Arati Patel, a licensed marriage and family therapist with a passion for helping individuals heal, feel calm, and move towards wholeness. I have specialized interests in working with anxiety, stress, fear, self-doubt, first generation issues, cultural stress, and identity issues. I currently have a private practice in Los Angeles, CA.

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