Do you find yourself paralyzed by the fear of making a mistake? Do you spend hours upon hours trying to perfect a project, only to end up dissatisfied with your work? If so, then you may be struggling with perfectionism. This can be a huge obstacle for people who suffer from OCD. In this blog post, we will discuss the nature of perfectionism in OCD and how to overcome it.
- 1 Perfectionism In OCD
- 2 Tips For Overcoming Perfectionism In OCD
- 3 Conclusion
- 4 A Word From Mantra Care
Perfectionism In OCD
Perfectionism in OCD is often driven by the fear of making mistakes. This can lead to difficulty completing tasks, as well as feeling overwhelmed and stressed. Perfectionism is more often referred to as a personality trait, but in OCD it is considered a symptom. And defined as an obsession.
Moreover, it is not unusual for people with OCD to also suffer from depression and anxiety. This is because the compulsions that are part of OCD can be very time-consuming and interfere with daily activities. In addition, the obsessions can be distressing and cause a great deal of anxiety.
It is important to remember that you are not alone if you suffer from OCD and perfectionism. There are many people who share your experience. And there are treatment options available that can help you manage your symptoms and live a more fulfilling life.
Before moving to tips for overcoming, we should understand why people with OCD feel a need for perfectionism.
Why People Need For Perfectionism In OCD
There are different reasons why people may feel the need for perfectionism. But usually, it is to do with a fear of making mistakes. This can be because they are worried about the consequences of making a mistake. For example, they may worry that they will make a mistake at work and get fired. Or they may worry that they will make a mistake on a test and fail the class.
Some common reasons include;
- The overwhelming fear of making a mistake
- The need for control
- Unacceptable levels of performance
- Worry about others’ opinions
- Fear of failure or not being good enough.
- Fear of the consequences before even performing
- Need to hear “Just Right” for all tasks
These are some reasons people may feel the need for perfectionism. And as you can see, most of these are related to fear. It is mostly caused because of obsessions and compulsions.
What People Follow To Achieve Perfectionism
Perfectionism in OCD is like a vicious cycle. The more you try to be perfect, the more OCD symptoms you experience. This can lead to even more perfectionism in an attempt to control your OCD.
People with perfectionism often have very high standards for themselves and others. They may also have difficulty completing tasks because they are never satisfied with their work. They may also procrastinate or avoid certain tasks altogether because they are afraid of not being able to do them perfectly.
There are a few ways that people with OCD try to achieve perfectionism;
- Repeatedly revising and checking their work
- Asking others for reassurance
- Avoiding certain tasks or activities
- Being indecisive
- Working for too long or too hard
- Being overly critical of themselves and others.
These are some ways that people with OCD try to achieve perfectionism. But as you can see, most of these methods are actually counterproductive. And can make OCD symptoms worse. People who have a sense of perfectionism in OCD are actually more at risk for developing depression and anxiety. This is so because of the high levels of stress that perfectionism can cause.
Tips For Overcoming Perfectionism In OCD
When you somehow realize that your perfectionism is becoming a problem, the first step is acknowledging it. After that, you need to work on accepting yourself for who you are. Here are some tips that might help you overcome your fear of perfectionism:
Accept That You’re Not Perfect
It is very essential in order to overcome your perfectionism to first accept that you’re not perfect. You need to know and understand that no one is perfect, and that’s okay. What matters most is that you’re doing your best and trying your hardest. Being perfect is actually a myth, so don’t strive for something that doesn’t exist.
Also, running behind the idea of perfection will only make you exhausted both mentally and physically. So, it’s important that you take a break, and relax. Don’t be too hard on yourself, learn to forgive yourself, and move on. And most importantly, accept your flaws and imperfections. As there’s one quote by famous author Marianne Williamson that goes,
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.”
So, don’t be afraid of your own power, and accept yourself for who you are.
Work On Your Self-Esteem
If you have low self-esteem, it might be one of the reasons why you’re a perfectionist. Your self-esteem is something that you need to work on if you want to get rid of your perfectionism. Strengthening your self-esteem will help you see yourself in a better light, and also make you feel good about yourself.
When you have high self-esteem, you’re able to accept your flaws and imperfections more easily. You’re also able to take criticism in a better way, and not let it get to you. So, work on building your self-esteem, and see the difference it makes. You can do this by including;
- Positive self-talk: Talk to yourself in a positive way, and avoid putting yourself down.
- Compliment yourself: Give yourself compliments, and appreciate your efforts and achievements, no matter how small they may be.
- Be around supportive people: Spend time with people who make you feel good about yourself, and who support you.
- Do things you enjoy: Make sure to do things that make you happy, and make you feel good about yourself.
Be Kind To Yourself
Stop being so hard on yourself! Beating yourself up will only make things worse. Instead, try to be more understanding and compassionate towards yourself. Give yourself some credit when you do something well and don’t dwell too much on your mistakes. And most importantly stop comparing yourself to others.
Everyone is unique and has their own set of strengths and weaknesses. So, instead of comparing yourself to others, focus on becoming the best version of yourself. And be proud and happy with who you are.
Start With Baby Steps
Trying to change everything at once is definitely not the way to go. When you’re trying to overcome your perfectionism, it’s important to take things slow and start with baby steps. It’s okay to not be perfect, and it’s okay to make mistakes.
Start by challenging your perfectionistic thoughts, and taking risks even if you might fail. Do things that scare you, and don’t let your fear of failure stop you from living your life. Remember, baby steps will eventually lead to big changes. So, start today and take the first step towards overcoming your perfectionism.
Remember That Progress, Not Perfection, Is The Goal
The most important thing to remember is that progress, not perfection, is the goal. As long as you’re moving forward and making an effort, that’s all that matters. So don’t be too discouraged if you make a mistake or two along the way. Moreover, don’t strive for perfection, it’s not worth it.
Striving for perfection will only lead to frustration, disappointment, and stress. So, instead of striving for perfection, focus on making progress. And always keep in mind that progress is the goal. Your goal should be realistic, and something that you can achieve.
Seek Professional Help
If you find that you can’t overcome your perfectionism on your own, don’t be afraid to seek professional help. A therapist can provide you with the support and guidance you need to work through your issues. Because therapists are someone who is objective, they can help you see things in a different light and help you find new perspectives.
They use techniques and strategies that are proven to be effective in treating OCD and other mental health disorders. So, if you feel like you need help, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. You can try Mantra Care to find a therapist that’s right for you.
Mantra Care is an online platform that connects you with mental health professionals. With Mantra Care, you can easily find a therapist that specializes in treating OCD and other mental health disorders. So, book your free consultation to get started and to know more about how Mantra Care can help you.
Be Patient And Persevere
Changing your perfectionistic ways won’t happen overnight. It will take time, effort, and a lot of patience. But if you stick with it, you will eventually get to a place where you’re more accepting of yourself and your mistakes. Even if you learn this then you’re already on the right path. So, don’t give up and keep moving forward.
Eventually, you will get there. And when you do, you’ll be glad that you persevered.
So, those are some tips on how to overcome your perfectionism in OCD. Moreover, you need to remember that you’re not alone. There are many people who share your struggles. But there’s also hope, and there are things that you can do to overcome your perfectionism. So, don’t give up and keep fighting!
To conclude, perfectionism in OCD is a very common but often overlooked symptom. It is important to be aware of this symptom and to seek help if you think you may be suffering from it. Also, accepting and recognizing that no one is perfect can be a very helpful step in overcoming your fear of perfection.
Remember, you are not alone in this struggle and there are many people who can help you on your journey to recovery. You just need to take that first step and reach out for help.
Thank you for reading! I hope this article was able to provide some helpful information about perfectionism in OCD.
A Word From Mantra Care
Your mental health — your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.
At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depression, anxiety, stress, relationship, OCD, LGBTQ, and PTSD. You can take our mental health test. You can also book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.