Tag Archives: perfectionistic

The Psychology of Perfectionism

Posted by: Asa Don Brown on October 11, 2013 3:14 pm

“I’m a perfectionist, so I can drive myself mad – and other people, too.  At the same time, I think that’s one of the reasons I’m successful.  Because I really care about what I do.”       ~ Michelle Pfeiffer

Why is it that perfectionism is considered a negative?  Are there not benefits from having a perfectionistic attitude?  According to New Oxford American Dictionary, perfectionism is “the refusal to accept any standard short of perfection.”  In reality, there a variety of influences that create perfectionism.  Perfectionism may be influenced or imposed by another.  Many times we adopt these habits, traits, characteristics, features, customs, standards, and ideological viewpoints during our youth.  In some cases, the perfectionistic way is unbeknownst to us. 

There are many different types of perfectionism:  A person may desire to prove perfectionistic if he/she has an aspiration to prove flawless in one’s pursuits, endeavors, and through his/her life ambitions.  In some cases, perfectionistic individuals have a strong urge to have even the  appearance of control.  The control maybe over one’s own personal emotional, psychological, or physical being; or it may be over another, an event, a place or an object.  The control may stem from a life that feels out of control, vulnerable, or susceptible to others.  It may have been inspired by physical, emotional, psychological or sexual abuse.  Unfortunately, negative perfectionism commonly stems from our childhood.  

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