The first time I heard about the downsides of being a perfectionist was when I discovered I was one. I always berated myself for being lazy, indisciplined, and a chronic procrastinator.
I was doing research on procrastination one day when I came across a podcast where two women spoke at length on procrastination and how being a perfectionist is a major cause of procrastination.
That was when I realized that my problem was not just procrastinating, my problem was also perfectionism and I needed to deal with it fast.
Being a perfectionist is not an entirely bad thing. It has its perks of ensuring you always do great at everything you do.
And if you are a perfectionist, you are probably ambitious and which makes you aspire to do great things.
Perfectionism will also make you have high standards and will help you be the best version of yourself.
But that is just as good as it gets.
You will also never see the good in what other people do except they do it your way (which is most likely impossible) and could hinder you from doing a lot of great things and forming the right circle of friends.
So, in this article I will be sharing with you how being a perfectionist can affect your life and productivity.
So, what are the ways by which perfectionism can affect your life and productivity?
Perfectionism will cause you to spend more time working
If you are a perfectionist, you will spend most of your time just working and working because you probably have a goal or ambition to achieve. But the downside is that at the end of the day you still won’t feel fulfilled.
Being productive means prioritizing your well-being above everything else. So, if you find yourself putting work above your well-being, then it is time to set a priority.
So, instead of trying to work every time, start taking breaks between work. Give yourself time to rest and recuperate before going back to work.
This will not only give your mind rest, it will also help you have time for more important things than work.
Read also: the problem of productivity culture
Perfectionism will hinder you from trying something new
Perfectionism kills your creative spirit.
It causes you to do things (only) a certain way, which makes you ignore or cut short an opportunity to try something new or innovative.
Having a better life and being productive means that you open yourself up to innovation and creativity.
If you shut these things out of your life, you might be missing out on the beautiful things of life.
Perfectionism will impede you from learning new things
If you are a perfectionist, you will believe you are always right and this will cause you to ignore an opportunity to learn from others especially if they are not as “perfect” as you.
This will result in you not having friends you can learn from and will also make people see you as arrogant and a “know it all.”
Perfectionism causes work/life imbalance
Work/life balance is the core aspect of productivity. It is the ability to balance your work and other aspects of your life without one suffering for the other.
A perfectionist will not be able to balance this because you are either putting work before your life or totally ignoring your life and working your days away.
Perfectionism will make you wear yourself out
It goes without saying. If you are a perfectionist, you will always get burnt out or worn out and this is because you barely have time for anything else but work and things that make you show your skills.
This can be stressful.
Read also: How to Know if You have Writer’s Burnout
Perfectionists wants to do so much at once
If you follow my productivity articles constantly, you will know that one thing I always reiterate is: “It is better to do three things successfully in a day than to plan to do 100 things in a day and end up doing nothing”
Perfectionists strive to do MORE.
No matter how much you’ve done, you still want to do more and because there’s so much our minds and strength can take, you end up breaking down and you’re forced to do less.
By the time you get to that point where you are unable to do more, you start berating yourself for your inadequacies which has a bad effect on your self-esteem.
Perfectionists are procrastinators
One of the least spoken cons of perfectionism is procrastination.
When you are a perfectionist, you realize you are always looking for the best time to do things.
You are never satisfied with how you do things and sometimes you get really scared to start something because you are not sure you can do it as perfectly as you want it to be.
Procrastination is a great impediment to productivity and it deters you from getting anything done because you believe the right time will come; which is a facade.
There is never a right time but now.
Most of the things perfectionism stands for are the opposites of productivity.
If you want to be productive, then you must stop trying to be perfect.
Cut yourself some slack and embrace flexibility.
Push trying to work hard at so many things apart and focus on one thing you want to do and do it well before moving to the next one.
Also, ensure you don’t beat yourself up each time things don’t go your way.
Try again but be gentle with yourself.