Three types of perfectionists
In his article on the subject, Benedict Carey of The New York Times explores how there are, in fact, problems resulting from some kinds of striving for perfection.
He writes, “Some researchers divide perfectionists into three types, based on answers to standardized questionnaires: Self-oriented strivers who struggle to live up to their high standards and appear to be at risk of self-critical depression; outwardly focused zealots who expect perfection from others, often ruining relationships; and those desperate to live up to an ideal they’re convinced others expect of them, a risk factor for suicidal thinking and eating disorders.”
Some perfectionism is natural
Carey quotes Gordon L. Flett, a psychology professor at York University: “It’s natural for people to want to be perfect in a few things, say in their job – being a good editor or surgeon depends on not making mistakes. It’s when it generalizes to other areas of life, home life, appearance, hobbies, that you begin to see real problems.”
The article continues, “Unlike people given psychiatric labels, however, perfectionists neither battle stigma nor consider themselves to be somehow dysfunctional. On the contrary, said Alice Provost, an employee assistance counselor at the University of California, Davis, who recently ran group therapy for staff members struggling with perfectionist impulses. ‘They’re very proud of it,’ she said. ‘And the culture highly values and reinforces their attitudes.’”
Continued in Unhappy? Self-Critical? Maybe You’re Just a Perfectionist, By Benedict Carey.
Image from book: Perfecting Ourselves To Death: The Pursuit Of Excellence And The Perils Of Perfectionism, by Richard Winter.
perfectionism and giftedness, perfectionist books, dealing with perfectionism, stiving for excellence
Article publié pour la première fois le 05/07/2015