Self, Heartbreak

3 Good Reasons Why You Need To Stop Trying To Be Perfect (And Focus On Something More Attainable)

Photo: Brooke Winters on Unsplash
3 Reasons Why You Should Stop Trying To Be Perfect (And Focus On Something More Attainable)

Trying to be perfect is something a lot of people have tried, but none have succeeded. It’s impossible to be perfect, no matter how hard you try. So, with that being said, why do so many people still strive for perfection? What’s the point of chasing something you’ll never actually be?

The funny thing about perfectionism is that a lot of times it’s not a conscious decision a person makes. What typically happens is someone pushes themselves so hard because they want to be good at whatever it is they’re doing, that eventually it turns into more of an obsession with being flawless. You’re aiming to be perfect without even realizing it.

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We all know that person too. Or, maybe you ARE that person. No matter what you do, it’s never quite good enough. You also expect more out of yourself, more than could possibly be given. You push and push yourself until you should stop, but you don’t stop. But isn’t that good, trying to make yourself better and go beyond your normal capabilities?

I certainly won’t tell you to not improve. It’s good to try to be better and aim to be the best. However, there’s a fine line between gunning for the top and trying to be perfect. In all honesty, perfectionism is more likely to hurt you than help, especially in the long run.

Success comes to those who put in the work, but when you become too focused on work and trying to make it perfect, the coming of success will stall. But how can something like that be so detrimental?

1. It’s a subconscious obsession.

Wanting something to be perfect is all based in psychology. There are plenty of scientific explanations as to why you’re like that as well. But I’ll leave those to professionals. Instead, I’d like to offer more basic theories.

One theory is that you believe only you can do (insert task here). Because you think this, you’ll allow no one else to help you or do the job. It has to be done by you because only you can do it. This is a form of perfectionism. However, constantly refusing assistance will only hurt you, because when you do need help, no one will want to offer it.

Another theory is that you do it without realizing, hence subconscious obsession. You need whatever you’re doing to be perfect (or at least perfect in your eyes). It’s not something you think about either unless someone points it out. It’s easier to work on this theory because it’s easier to change a mindset like this one. If this sounds like you, work on being okay with the way things are.

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2. It’s frustrating to others.

This goes for both the person trying to be perfect and the people that have to deal with that person. When you try to be perfect, you just start to push others away because you think they couldn’t possibly be able to help. You start to come off as cold, or at the very least, annoying.

For the ones who have to put up with that person, it becomes very difficult to have a work relationship with them. Because they get turned down constantly, they feel hurt and decide that they’re better off not offering help at all. Overall, it can make a work environment challenging or a friendship trying.

I know it can be hard to accept help, but it can make things easier for you in the long run. And if that doesn’t work for you, think of it this way: what matters more to you, being perfect or having friends?

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3. It’s only going to do more harm than good.

Ultimately, this is the truth of perfectionism. If you can’t do it perfectly, you quit. It also pushes people away. You eventually end up with no friends and no hobbies. Pretty lonely right? While trying to be perfect sounds good now, it’s only going to hurt you later.

Being perfect is impossible. No human being has ever achieved it, so why’re you trying to? Just aim to do your best. People appreciate that more than something that’s flawless.

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Jesse Oakley is a writer who writes about love, relationships, self-care and spirituality/astrology.