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Could Perfectionism Be a Detriment to Your Career?

Posted by Brian Spence on Sep 28, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Career Advice, Job, Career, PerfectionismIf you find yourself going through phases at work where you lose your motivation and become easily frustrated, you're not alone. Everyone hits a slump now and then. However if you cycle between working intensely and then burning out, you may have your perfectionism to blame.

Perfectionists want every detail of a task to be handled expertly, and no one can blame them for wanting things to be done with excellence.

You would think they were the perfect employee and an asset to any office, except that they set a pace for themselves that no one can maintain and frequently burnout on work. A new study says that this burnout is not created because of the desire to work hard and make things better, but is instead caused by the critical attitude about accomplishments and fear of failure that often goes along with a perfectionistic attitude.

According to the Huffington Post article, "Perfectionists are on Fast Track to Burnout at Work and School" by Carolyn Gregoire, simply being aware of the negative side of perfectionism may help you avoid the burnout,

"[Perfectionists] can introduce flexible goals and the notion of degrees of success and failure," he said. "They need to challenge the irrational idea that perfection is needed, and give themselves scope to do enough or do a job well without it needing to be perfect." Hill added that perfectionists can challenge the irrational beliefs underlying their perfectionist tendencies by reconceptualizing failure as a learning opportunity."

Curbing your perfectionistic tendencies could be the best thing you can do for your long-term career. Not to mention your health, as perfectionists are more likely to suffer from chronic stress, mental health issues and heart disease. If you can learn to do your best work, without critically analyzing it for flaws, you can have the best of both worlds, become a more reliable employee, and keep your standards high without burning out from unnecessary stress.

For information on this and related topics, visit the Career Advice and Self-Improvement section of our blog. If you're looking for a career in the healthcare industry, please contact us.


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