Are You a Perfectionator?

PerfectionateOK, this will be the last post focused around perfection, I promise {for at least a week}. I write this blog both as an organizing expert and an organizing student. Does that sound lame? The truth is that I have knowledge and special skills {does anyone else think of Liam Neeson talking about his “very special set of skills”?} derived from years of education, training, studying and organizing for others. And, I am always learning more. In fact, over the past two years I have been on an accelerated & very rigorous learning endeavor. Some of you might be familiar with it- it’s called motherhood.

Among the many things I have learned about myself recently, one stands out to share with you. Hello, my name is Lauren and I’m a perfectionator. {Yes, a term I made up.} Have you heard of the term perfection paralysis? It refers to the inability to start something for fear it won’t be perfect. But you see, as I shared earlier, perfection is not one of my goals so I didn’t think that I could be a perfectionist and therefore, it couldn’t be the root of my procrastination. Agreed?

As an organizer, I became acutely aware of this thing called analysis¬†paralysis, as well. Which, I readily admit to doing but starting projects is not a huge issue for me so I didn’t think that applied either.

Well, as it turns out, I do something that’s even sneakier. I have this need to do it better. Just one or two steps from where I am now, so I can tell myself I’m not done yet. ¬†Or I don’t have what I need to do a decent job on something I want to create, so therefore I don’t progress. See? No mention of perfect…

I have finally confessed to myself, and now to you, that I am a perfectionator. It really doesn’t matter that I don’t aim for perfection. What matters is that it prevents me from completing things I want to do.

So, now what? Knowing is half the battle. Being wiling to change despite the fear and discomfort is the hard part.

These are some questions I ask myself when I become aware I’m perfectionating:
What is the minimum you can do to produce a result you can live with?
Is it better to get the done than do it perfectly/according to too high standards?
If you don’t have time/supplies/information to do it now, when will you?

If none of those are effective I tell myself “There’s ideal and then there’s real. Get over it” and that usually works!

I’m curious- are you a perfectionator? Recovering perfectionist? Do you procrastinate on starting or finishing? Or both? What works FTP get you past this hurdle?

*Just to prove my resolve, I’m going to publish this post now {waiting at the dentist} before I get a chance to include an image. Aren’t you impressed?

One Response to Are You a Perfectionator?

Leave a reply

FREE Resource Guide

Define, Design, Do {BE SIMPLE} Quick Reference Card