How to ditch perfectionism for good

How to ditch perfectionism for good

Are you a perfectionist? I used to be, and it was one of the things that kept me from finding true happiness. I learned to overcome this destructive habit, so today I’m sharing how to ditch perfectionism for good.

Perfectionism is a trap

Recently, one of my clients shared an experience she had interviewing for a job she really wanted. Annette (not her real name) was asked the stereotypical question, “What is your greatest weakness?”

Out of nervousness, she found herself answering “I’m a perfectionist.”

Though this was actually true, it was also very cliché! Decades ago, this was considered the best way to answer that question because it supposedly showed the prospective employer that you had really high standards.

Annette inwardly cringed because she knew she had revealed something that wasn’t actually a positive trait.

If I were the interviewer, it would have been a real turn-off. I know that perfectionists are never happy with the status of the project. They hold a strong belief that there is always room for improvement. But this turns into a perpetual quest for perfection. It becomes a vicious cycle that causes the stakeholders to work an incredible amount of overtime and put in a lot of extra effort. Ironically, they are probably are still missing critical deadlines.

In many cases, the owner of the project has to just settle for “good enough” because they can never get it just right. They likely even lose sleep over what they feel is a failure.

How to ditch perfectionism for good

Why do we strive for perfection?

Psychology Today magazine states:

“Usually, we strive toward being perfect to compensate for a sense of inadequacy. People who want to be perfect usually have an exaggerated sense of their own shortcomings.”

The article goes on to state that these beliefs usually come from experiences during the developmental years.

Based on observation of my own perfectionist clients, I completely agree. I have found that they strive to be liked and accepted and think that being perfect will accomplish this goal. They also tend to be extremely self-critical, and have an underlying inferiority complex – a feeling as though others are better than them.

As a reformed perfectionist myself, I can attest from personal experience that this puts a tremendous strain on relationships. Not only was I holding an unrealistically high standard for myself, I found that I was also imposing these impossible standards upon my loved ones. The last thing I wanted to do was make my children and partner feel inadequate!

“Perfect” doesn’t mean “best”

Even though most of us know deep down that perfection is never achievable, sometimes we still try to get there! It’s that inner part of ourselves that strives for the very best. But we might forget… The very best of something isn’t usually our perceived “perfect” version of it.

The very best of something isn't usually our perceived "perfect" version of it.

How to ditch perfectionism for good

The only way to let go of a need for perfection is to make a foundational change to the way your subconscious mind thinks. The best way I know how to do this is through hypnosis.

When you’re in a hypnotic state, you have the ability to change the way your subconscious thinks. There’s a fancy term for this called neuroplasticity.

A simplified explanation of how hypnosis works, is that when you are in a hypnotic state, I speak to your subconscious mind using positive affirmations reflecting how you want to think. This is how your desired changes are made to your subconscious thoughts. In your waking state, you are more aware of these new, positive beliefs. As a result, you are now better equipped to react to stressful and emotional situations.

Through hypnosis, you really can ditch perfectionism for good!

I became a Certified Hypnosis Practitioner to help others build a happy, positive, life. I would love to help you on your journey. Learn more about my hypnosis programs and schedule your free, no-obligation consultation and assessment.

As a Transformational Life Coach and Certified Hypnosis Practitioner, I help people train their brain to think differently so they can break old, unwanted patterns. Book your free consultation and assessment online.

Jen Merkel Holistic Hypnosis and Wellness

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