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How To Overcome Perfectionism And Procrastination


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Correct me if I am wrong, but perfectionism is glorified even when it borders on disorderly behavior. While it’s good to excel in the tasks you do, it’s not humanly possible to do everything with absolute perfection.

If you are a picky perfectionist who only wants things to be done a certain way, even the littlest things can weigh you down. Moreover, studies show that perfectionists are more prone to procrastination and experiencing burnout.

Now, procrastination is often mistaken as laziness when in reality, it is a way of stalling work. The reason behind procrastinating might be your fear that the outcome may not be up to your perfectionist standards. In the long run, expecting to give your hundred percent without committing any errors is a futile thought that does more harm than good.

If you find yourself in similar waters, I can empathize with you. While it’s good to be critical of your performance, I would suggest not judging yourself too much. 

So, here’s my take on how to overcome the need to be perfect:

#1 Be gentle with yourself: it is very important to be kind and to treat yourself with the same tenderness you would offer a loved one. Whenever you make a mistake, imagine if your little sister or a friend committed the same error. Would treating them the way you treat yourself help? No, right? 

If you can accommodate others’ mistakes, then why not yours? You’re a human too, who is allowed to err and grow through it. 

#2 Avoid taking yourself too seriously: sometimes, we give way too much weightage to trivial things that don’t even matter in the bigger picture. Not everything demands your absolute best, and you should develop a sense of judgment to distinguish the important tasks from the less important ones.

If you strive to be perfect in everything, it’ll only lead to burnout, which will likely downgrade your performance. 

#3 Be flexible and understanding: an essential thing to understand is that your “hundred percent” will vary every day. Sometimes you can check off all the tasks on the to-do list, but on other days, you’ll be able to get through only half of it, and that’s alright. 

Many external factors contribute to your performance, so beating yourself up for minor details is unfair and not the solution. Additionally, people’s relationship with themselves defines the connection they form with others, so practice being flexible.

Have you had to overcome perfectionism and procrastination? What steps did you take to overcome it?

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