Are You a Perfectionist?
What does it take to be a perfectionist? How do people around me are so perfect? Is it good to be a perfectionist? Well this is a question you may have asked yourself or probably someone else. In a way, we have always been in awe of something perfect or someone who is perfect. While you are reading, you wonder that you have come across this question from your colleagues, trainees, coaches, your children, spouse, etc.
Well, over the years, answering myself and others on this question, I have come to realize is that the basic premise of the question is somewhere misplaced. The reason I say that the idea is misplaced, is because the understanding of perfectionism in general is somewhat ambiguous. It is one of the most widely used terminology interchangeably with excellence.
This is maybe since our early days we have been raised in an environment where we were asked to behave perfectly at an academic, social or a cultural event. We were given a set of instructions to behave in a perfect manner. Most of the times there would be a so-called role model we were asked to follow or we ourselves followed, the one who is perfection personified. So, whatever we did was in comparison to the benchmark set by the role model or rather in compliance of the norms set for us. We can dwell much deeper into the psychological aspects, but the intent is to keep the article as short and crisp as possible.
Coming back to perfectionism and excellence, people often refer to or mistakenly refer to perfectionism, when they talk about excellence. Based on the years of experience, especially into training & development and having read and understood about famous and successful personalities, I came up with a whole lot of differences between perfectionism and excellence. Some of the information is already in the public domain and available on various self – help portals. I thought if I can add some of my findings to the existing information and put it all in here for your benefit.
At this point, if I may request you to list a few points on a piece of paper which according to you mean or some way relate to perfection. As we move further you may realize that what you described was excellence.
Let’s get going with this…
EXCELLENCE is Moving Target.
Perfection is Being Fixed.
EXCELLENCE is the Willingness to be Wrong.
Perfection is Being Fixed about Being Right.
EXCELLENCE is Risk Perfection is Fear.
EXCELLENCE is Power.
Perfection is Anger and Frustration.
EXCELLENCE is Accepting.
Perfection is Judgment.
EXCELLENCE is Confidence.
Perfection is Doubt.
EXCELLENCE is Flowing & Fluid.
Perfection is Pressure & Being Static.
EXCELLENCE is Journey.
Perfection is Destination.
EXCELLENCE is Trust.
Perfection is Selfishness & Rigidity.
EXCELLENCE Infuses Objectivity.
Perfection is Subjectivity.