Are You A Perfectionist?

by Janice

perfect-building-blocksI am a perfectionist, if you can even call it that.

Because, as I imagine most perfectionists would understand, I have never achieved perfection. I think the true sign of a “perfectionist” is the never ending discontent with ourselves and our work.

A “perfectionist” is most profoundly aware of her imperfection.

I analyze every part of my body, my work, my personality, my mind, etc., but I am never able to check a box that says, “Yes, this one I can stop working on. It is done.”

The only end I can ever achieve is, “No, it is not perfect but it will have to do.” Sometimes I can accept that answer and move forward. Other times I am trapped by it, trying to attain an impossible goal.

I joked around on Facebook the other night:

“I am a perfectionist, I admit it. But sometimes, it is nice to know that I work my a** off to make sure something is done right. (Other times, it is just a pain in that a**!)”

I am grateful that I work hard and push to do my best. But, as I said, it is also a pain. It makes me less prolific as a blogger because I edit and tweak for hours.

Susan, my twin sister and co-founder here at 5 Minutes for Mom, calls herself a “recovering perfectionist.” She refuses to allow those tendencies to control her and is far less obsessive than I am.

We were raised to strive for A+ outcomes by our wonderful – but extremely perfectionist – mother.

As we’ve grown older, Susan has managed to loosen some of these self-imposed shackles. She’s not in the clear of course… she still also takes way to long fiddling with posts and struggling with the all-or-nothing thinking that comes along with a perfectionist personality. But she’s making progress and I’m also trying to overcome perfectionism.

Tell Me: What about you? Do you struggle with perfectionism? What has helped you to overcome perfectionism?

Written by Janice Croze, co-founder of 5 Minutes for Mom.
Wanna chat? Find me at: @5minutesformom, @janicecroze and Facebook.com/5minutesformom.



Email Author    |    Website About Janice

Janice is co-founder of 5 Minutes For Mom. She's been working online since 2003 and is thankful her days are full of social media, writing and photography. You can see more of her photos at janicecrozephotography.com.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Cat Davis November 30, 2011 at 10:38 pm

For as long as I can remember I’ve struggled with a perfectionist personality, it’s just part of who I am and how I do things. Instead of trying to overcome it, I embrace it.

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2 Damon November 30, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Trying to write succinctly. I fluctuate between long, drawn our sentences with complicated punctuation. And short ones. ;-)

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3 Barbie December 1, 2011 at 12:03 am

I believe I’ve come a lone way in this area, but still have a ways to go. I can so relate to endless hours of tweaking and editing for one blog post. Ugh! It never ends.

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4 Krista December 1, 2011 at 1:46 am

Oh man, totally a perfectionist. And also a procrastinator. It’s hard to want to do something when I know that it will never quite turn out exactly the way I want. Ugh!

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5 @PamelaMKramer - A Renaissance Woman December 1, 2011 at 9:05 am

Oh yes!!!!!! But honestly as a Mom with three kids in the house I tend to let a lot of that go because of time constraints. I also go to the gym a lot so maybe I have just transferred my perfectionism to a different part of my life.

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6 Rachel M Cotton December 8, 2011 at 8:57 am

I was just writing my morning journal pages, and this was my topic too!!

Perfectionist. I definitely fall into that category. It has been one of the hardest things about becoming a mother for the first time. I want to be perfect at everything – my career, my artwork, being a wife, being a mother, keeping a house, being financially responsible. I even want to take care of myself well! *gasp* I find the debilitating factor to be the guilt I feel when I don’t quite get it right. And let me tell you, lately there is a lot of guilt.

I find me saying more and more to myself, “It’s fine, Rachel. It’s fine.” Yet some days “fine” still doesn’t feel quite good enough.

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