The answer that everyone hates


\”So, what is your biggest weakness?\”\”Oh I’m such a perfectionist! I just care so much about doing a good job that sometimes I overwhelm myself and strain relationships.\”Tragic. Way to spin a weakness into supposed heroism in order to look good for a job. The thing is, perfectionism is a real problem that many people live with and few people work to improve.In his book, How to be an Imperfectionist, Stephen Guise goes so far to say that perfectionism is basically a self- and culturally-imposed debilitation at the root of indecision, social anxiety, procrastination, depression and low self-esteem.Damn.I never thought of myself as a perfectionist growing up because back then, the kids who humblebragged about being a perfectionist were obsessed with bumping their test grades from an A- to an A and rainbow-ordering their markers. But it turns out that perfectionism takes many shapes and forms and I have my own brand of it too.  How to be an Imperfectionist was something of a wake up call for me in this regard. Through reading this book, I realized that I had some unexamined issues that were subconsciously driving a lot of my decisions. I’m grateful for this book because Guise helped me face those things and gave me some good tools to work with to improve. I got a lot out of it, so I say it\’s definitely worth checking out. Here are my notes and quotes from the book:

Perfectionism is the search for comfortThe two main types of perfectionism are over-driven and paralyzedRespect your fearWe don’t fear failure, per se, we fear what failure says about who we areActual failure isn’t as bad as the idea of failing to get what we wantInaction validates great potentialHow do you know when an outcome is a chance occurrence or your fault?Do not underestimate the power of a bad, anxious or lazy moodEffort in the process is more important than perfection of the outcome“People who want approval the most get the least, and people who need approval the least get the most” – Wayne Dyer

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