Do you often feel like you’re not good enough? Do you feel like you have to be perfect in order to be accepted by others? If so, you may be struggling with perfectionism. While there is nothing wrong with wanting to do your best, perfectionism can often lead to anxiety and other mental health issues. In this blog post, we will discuss the relationship between perfectionism and anxiety and provide some tips for overcoming perfectionism.
- 1 Defining Perfectionism
- 2 Defining Anxiety
- 3 Relationship Between Perfectionism And Anxiety
- 4 Symptoms Of Perfectionism And Anxiety
- 5 Tips To Manage Perfectionism And Anxiety
- 6 Conclusion
Perfectionism is defined as “a personality trait characterized by a person’s striving for flawlessness and setting excessively high-performance standards. It is accompanied by overly critical self-evaluations and concerns regarding others’ evaluations.”
In other words, perfectionists are their own worst critics. They set impossibly high standards for themselves and are never satisfied with their accomplishments. They also tend to be highly critical of others and are always looking for ways that people can improve.
While there is nothing wrong with striving for excellence, perfectionism can become problematic. If it starts to interfere with a person’s ability to function in daily life. Perfectionists are at an increased risk of developing anxiety disorders.
According to studies, there are three main types of perfectionism: self-oriented, other-oriented, and socially prescribed perfectionism.
Self-oriented perfectionists are those who set high standards for themselves and are never satisfied with their accomplishments. Other-oriented perfectionists are those who set high standards for others and are always looking for ways that people can improve. Socially prescribed perfectionists are those who believe that others have high standards for them and they must meet these standards in order to be accepted.
All three types of perfectionism are associated with increased anxiety. It is important to note that not all perfectionists will develop an anxiety disorder. However, perfectionism is a risk factor for developing anxiety disorders.
Anxiety is described as an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts, and physical changes like increased blood pressure. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults (18% of the population).
There are many different types of anxiety disorders, each with its own set of symptoms. The most common types are:
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
- Panic Disorder
- Social Anxiety Disorder
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
So, these can be difficult to live with day-to-day. Many people who suffer from anxiety disorders also struggle with other mental health conditions, such as depression. It is important to seek help if you think you may have an anxiety disorder.
Relationship Between Perfectionism And Anxiety
The relationship between perfectionism and anxiety is a complicated one. On the one hand, anxiety can be caused by perfectionism. On the other hand, perfectionism can be caused by anxiety. So, it is important to understand the differences and similarities if you want to understand the relationship between perfectionism and anxiety.
Perfectionism and anxiety are different in a number of ways.
- First, perfectionism is usually about achievement whereas anxiety is often about worry.
- Second, perfectionists tend to have high standards for themselves whereas people with anxiety might have high standards for others.
- Third, perfectionists are often afraid of making mistakes while people with anxiety might be afraid of failure.
- Finally, perfectionists often strive for perfection in their work or appearance. Whereas people with anxiety might strive for perfection in their relationships or social life.
So the differences between perfectionism and anxiety are numerous. And it is important to understand them if you want to understand the relationship between the two.
Perfectionism and anxiety also have a number of similarities.
- Perfectionism and anxiety can be caused by a fear of failure or making mistakes.
- Both can lead to procrastination as well as avoidance behaviors.
- Both can also lead to feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem.
So, the similarities between perfectionism and anxiety are just as numerous as the differences. However, both conditions can be treated successfully with therapy. If you or someone you know is struggling with either perfectionism or anxiety, please seek professional help.
Also, it is essential to understand that the relationship between perfectionism and anxiety is a two-way street. In other words, perfectionism can cause anxiety, and anxiety can cause perfectionism. So, if you want to effectively treat either condition, it is important to address both.
Symptoms Of Perfectionism And Anxiety
It is believed that perfectionism and anxiety are linked together. People who tend to be perfectionists are also more likely to experience anxiety. There are a few different ways to explain this relationship. However, some of the common symptoms of perfectionism and anxiety include:
- feeling like you’re never good enough
- setting unrealistic standards for yourself
- procrastinating because you’re afraid of making mistakes
- feeling overwhelmed or stressed out
- avoiding certain tasks or situations because you’re afraid of failing
These symptoms can cause a lot of distress and make it difficult to function in daily life. In addition to the symptoms, both conditions are also associated with other mental health problems, such as depression and eating disorders.
In fact, the signs and symptoms of perfectionism and anxiety often overlap. This can make it difficult to diagnose one condition without the other. However, if you’re concerned about either condition, it’s important to talk to a mental health professional.
Also, it’s important to remember that not everyone who is a perfectionist will experience anxiety, and not everyone who experiences anxiety is a perfectionist. It’s also possible to have both conditions without any other mental health problems. But if you are struggling with perfectionism and anxiety, there are treatments that can help.
Tips To Manage Perfectionism And Anxiety
When both conditions are unmanaged, they can lead to serious problems. But there are things you can do to get them both under control.
Here are some tips to manage perfectionism and anxiety:
Recognize your triggers
Triggers are the things that set off your perfectionism or anxiety. Once you know what they are, you can start to manage them. Also, it is believed that perfectionism and anxiety are genetic. So, if you have a family member who suffers from either condition, you may be more likely to suffer from it as well. It is believed that the triggers for perfectionism and anxiety can be:
- Certain events
- Stressful life changes
- Traumatic experiences
Talk to someone
If you’re struggling to manage your perfectionism or anxiety, talking to your family members, friends, or even a therapist can be really helpful. It can help you understand your triggers and how to deal with them. Even so, sharing your feelings with someone you trust can be hard, so don’t feel like you have to do it all at once. People with perfectionism and anxiety often feel like they need to be in control all the time. But sometimes, it can be helpful to let go and allow someone else to help you.
Set realistic standards
This is often necessary for people with perfectionism. If you’re constantly setting unrealistic standards for yourself, it’s going to be very difficult to meet them. And when you can’t meet them, it can lead to anxiety and even depression. So, try to set realistic standards that you can actually achieve. In fact, sometimes it can be helpful to set your standards a little lower than you think you can achieve so that you always feel like you’re succeeding.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed by perfectionism or anxiety, it’s important to take a break. This doesn’t mean that you should stop trying to manage your condition, but it does mean that you should take some time for yourself. Maybe take a day off from work or school, or go on a vacation. Just make sure that you’re taking the time to relax and recharge. Because this is when you’ll be able to come back and tackle your perfectionism or anxiety with a fresh perspective.
Break the cycle
If you find that you’re constantly anxious or stressed about things, it’s important to break the cycle. One way to do this is to set aside some time each day to do something that you enjoy. This can be anything from reading a book to going for a walk. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it’s something that makes you happy. In fact, this is one of the most important things you can do to manage anxiety and perfectionism.
Challenge your negative thoughts
In perfectionism, anxiety, and depression, negative thinking is common. But it’s important to challenge these thoughts. When you catch yourself thinking something negative, try to counter it with a positive thought. For example, if you’re thinking “I’m not good enough,” try to counter it with “I am doing my best.” Moreover, negative thoughts in most cases are not accurate. So, it’s important to remember that just because you’re thinking something doesn’t make it true.
This is a helpful tool for managing both conditions. Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment and accepting things as they are. It can be helpful to focus on your breath or a certain object. Or you can try mindfulness meditation. There are many different ways to practice mindfulness, so find what works best for you. Also, you should know that it takes time and practice to master mindfulness. So, don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results right away.
Self-esteem is often low in people with anxiety and perfectionism. So, it’s important to find ways to improve self-esteem. This can be done by setting realistic standards, challenging negative thoughts, and practicing mindfulness. Additionally, try to do things that make you feel good about yourself. Maybe volunteer, take on a new hobby, or spend time with friends and family. Just find something that makes you feel good and stick with it.
Seek professional help
This is often necessary for people with anxiety and perfectionism. If you find that you’re struggling to manage your condition, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. A therapist can help you learn how to set realistic standards, challenge negative thoughts, and improve self-esteem. They can also provide support and guidance when things get tough. So, you should consider seeking professional help if you’re struggling to manage your anxiety or perfectionism.
Stay calm and carry on
Anxiety and perfectionism can be difficult to manage, but it’s important to remember that you’re not alone. There are many people who struggle with these conditions. So, stay calm and carry on. Find what works for you and stick with it. Don’t give up, because eventually, you will find success.
So, these are some common ways that people manage both conditions. If you struggle with these conditions, try out some of these tips and see what works for you. Remember, you are not alone in this battle. Stay calm and carry on.
Conclusively, perfectionism and anxiety are highly related. If you suffer from one, you are likely to suffer from the other. However, there are ways to manage both conditions. If you think you might be suffering from either perfectionism or anxiety, talk to a doctor or mental health professional. They can help you develop a plan to manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.
Both conditions can be debilitating, but you don’t have to suffer from them forever. With help, you can manage your symptoms and live a happy, fulfilling life.
You can contact Mantra Care for more information on anxiety and perfectionism. Mantra Care is an online mental health resource that provides pocket-friendly, and confidential support for people suffering from mental health issues. You can also book a therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.