Being a perfectionist for most people just means we like doing a good job and hate making mistakes, which, when it comes to work is very useful. However, for some people, perfectionism can be a bit more extreme and have a detrimental effect on their time and prevent them from completing work due to minor issues.
Now most people associate being a perfectionist as a good thing, and hold a lot of pride in this. This is a good thing because it can often push people to achieve greatness in both their personal and work lives.
However, is being a perfectionist really a flaw like most of us like to say it is during the interview question “What is your biggest weakness?”
The dark side of perfectionism
The main issue with perfectionism is if we don’t rein it in and prevent it from going to the extreme then some people will continue working (and reworking) on a task. They won’t finish a piece of work because it isn’t up to their extremely high standard.
This isn’t always necessary. Why? Well it comes down to what it is that you’re working on. If it is an article for example that is going to other people for review, do you need to make it perfect first time? Probably not.
If, however your work has huge effects, and what you do needs to be correct then maybe that requires a bit more time on the smaller details and to be reviewed and revised multiple times. Whichever it is, you need to identify it and always make sure you are not spending too much time on something when your valuable time can be used elsewhere.
Mistakes are a part of life
Perfectionists can’t stand failure. This is the key aspect of being a perfectionist, however failing or making mistakes isn’t always bad. Making mistakes marks learning points, areas for improvement that help us grow as people.
So, if you are a perfectionist, or have perfectionist tendencies, remember to give yourself a break sometimes and don’t let it hinder your productivity. Perfectionism doesn’t need to be a bad thing, it just needs to be managed well.
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