Dealing with perfectionism


Perfectionism is "the refusal to accept any standard short of perfection" and although it's a good thing to want things done right, dream big and keep striving for improvement, it can be hard to wrestle with when you work from home or run your own business. It can lead to major procrastination and self-doubt, stifle your creativity and stop you moving your business forwards. It's hard to keep a lid on it I know, I have to make a conscious effort to push past it. Otherwise no blog post I wrote for you would be good enough to publish, I'd always feel like I could do more for a client and new projects (like my Social Media Whizz online course) would never get off the ground!

So how can we stop being a perfectionist in our business? Obviously this list isn't perfect (wink) but here's a few ideas to help you deal with it...


1. Give yourself a deadline or a specific end point for projects and tasks. Of course make sure you have enough time to do the job well but not too much time that you go into 'tinkering' mode where you 'over-do' everything!

2. Recognise the good things. Really focus in on the things you've done well rather than the perfectionists tendency to only notice what could be better! As a group we tend not to take compliments well either so make an effort to not just accept them but actually concentrate on them.

3. Start small. Any task will feel big and overwhelming if you put pressure on yourself to do it perfectly. Try to break down projects and tasks into small chunks that you can complete before you move on to the next part. Doing one thing at a time makes progress more likely rather than procrastination over the whole project stopping you getting anything done!

4. Focus on the big picture. We perfectionists can always stress ourselves out that we could have done more so it's important to remind ourselves to put things in perspective. Question how much it really matters? Honestly, will anyone care in a years time? Probably not! And breathe...

5. Accept that you and others will make mistakes! You're human and so are other people (our high standards mean we can be a little tough on others too). Instead of beating yourself up for mistakes try to focus on the good again, if we got everything perfect or right first time we'd never learn anything new. The blips or mistakes are actually part of your story so we just need to accept they will happen but they may be the great twist in our plot!

6. Don't forget your sense of humour. Easier said than done maybe when you're running a business but where you can try to laugh, often. If the voice in your head is being the nagging perfectionist think about what your best friend or partner would say to you right now? Chances are they'd pull your leg about it and tell you to lighten up ;-) As they say... "happiness is all about the journey not the destination"!

Does being a perfectionist hold you back sometimes? Which of these tips is your favourite?

Chloe x