Believing you have to be perfect is a barrier to your goals and life fulfillment. In fact, perfectionism will instead set you up for failure since you’ll spend your days chasing something that doesn’t exist.
Having a perfectionist mindset has repercussions, and it can especially hinder your success in the workforce.
Here are 3 ways perfectionism can hinder your success at work and the fix to overcome them:
1. Perfectionism Decreases Confidence
Highlighting all of the times that you almost completed a project “perfectly” isn’t as confidence boosting as “I nailed it!” Your perceptions and self-talk play a huge role in the level of confidence you have and maintain on a day-to-day basis.
Often, a perfectionist will complete a project and right before it is about to be completed, he or she will tweak it again and again. Nothing is good enough. When the time limit of a task has been met, a perfectionist will find that multiple people compliment them on their work, but they don’t feel that it was “their best.”
When you don’t take the time to absorb your successes, you are missing an opportunity to build your confidence. Confidence is what you need to get to the next level of your career. Confidence will allow you to take healthy risks on more meaningful projects, and it will allow you to speak up in meetings, interviews and leadership roles.
During projects, talk nicely to yourself. Allow yourself to make mistakes. Then, get back on track. When projects are completed, before jumping on the next list of to-do’s, celebrate your successes. You can celebrate by sharing your success with others who compliment you, with loved ones outside of work, or even in your journal quietly to yourself. In fact, I encourage clients to keep a journal of their successes so they can reflect on how much they have achieved year after year.
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2. Perfectionism Burns Bridges
In the workforce, you may find that you don’t often delegate tasks because “Tom doesn’t do it as well as I do,” or “It’ll just be quicker if I do it.” People notice this behavior. When you give off the perception that only you do things well, you show a certain side of yourself that many people (co-workers and bosses) may not like.
Also, your support lines at work may not want to assist you when you actually end up needing them because they will fear that if they don’t do a task as “perfectly as you,” it will upset you. They will either avoid you altogether or refuse when you ask for help.
Believe in your team. They may have some very creative or insightful ways of doing something that you never thought of. An open mind may generate new doors for you and your team with production, efficiency, and bonding. Also, seek support and outside resources.
As perfectionists, we get in a habit of portraying that we can do everything and do it well. The truth is, this is exhausting and not always true. Instead, begin creating a new reputation today of someone who isn’t too prideful or perfect to ask for help.
3. Perfectionism Keeps Too Much On Your Plate
A perfectionist often holds the rest of the world accountable to being perfect, too. Before we know it, as we hoard all the tasks because “no one does it like me” we find ourselves with a bunch of to-dos on our plate. These tasks are often tedious, minuscule or not necessary to our goals and bigger dreams.
Unfortunately, if you want to add something major to your agenda that would make you shine, you can’t put that on your plate because it is consumed with a bunch of smaller roles. Should a perfectionist finally succumb to delegating out the smaller tasks, they end up turning into the ever-hated micromanager!
Create a list of your goals, direction, and dreams in your career. What tasks are currently on your plate that significantly align with that bigger goal? Reflect on what you can delegate out and do that ASAP. Now, assess what roles or projects you should add on to your plate to shine, build credibility or demonstrate leadership. Remember not to leap into the micromanager role with what you end up choosing to delegate out. Instead, set checkpoint dates to discuss progress and goals.
What strategies have you used to get over perfectionism?
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