Prisoner of Perfection

How to Stop Being a Prisoner of Perfection

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I am a HUGE prisoner of perfection–if I didn’t have a 3 letter middle name, it might be perfectionist. But perfectionism isn’t going to help me achieve my goals. If anything, it’s going to put them off FARTHER in the future.

Do you ever feel like this?

You want things to be perfect before you presenting anything to the world. You’re afraid to showcase something people are going to disapprove of or judge or have something negative to say about. We get consumed with our perfectionism because following through with our project makes us very vulnerable. It’s even be harder with all of our social media!

But we need to draw the line somewhere, or we will never complete what we want and never accomplish our goals. Here are my tips on how to stop being a prisoner of perfection.

Stop being a Prisoner of Perfection

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How to Stop Being a Prisoner of Perfection:

Find the source of your perfectionism.

Knowing why your act a certain way will help you know how to change the action. There are many common reasons that cause us to become a prisoner of perfection: fear, self-doubt, vulnerability, nerves, not knowing what the outcome will be, etc. You just have to decide what that reason is (you can also read how to face your fears here, too).

For me, I become a prisoner of perfection when I start to experience self-doubt. I’m not sure that what I’m creating is good enough. I start to search for things that exist that are better than what I’m creating. I start to procrastinate as a defense and push the thought of my achievement FURTHER into the future.

Create a set of goals to accomplish.

We can’t let ourselves remain a prisoner of perfection. The best way to overcome perfectionism is to have a clear, defined plan. Think about what you REALLY want to accomplish and create a list of goals that you need to achieve in order to achieve them–use the SMART method to help you create your goals.

I like to set goals 90 days at a time, so that I don’t overwhelm myself (I tend to think TOO BIG and too far out, which causes problems). Then I write them out, either in my dream book or using a vision board–check out how to make a vision board, if you’ve never tried one.

Hold yourself accountable to these goals.

It’s one thing to write goals. It’s another to actually accomplish them. I don’t know about you, but I tend to break promises with myself so I need something to hold myself accountable.

The best way to be accountable is to share your goals aloud. This may be with your partner, or an accountability partner–someone that you can trust with your goals. Or it may be more public through a social media post (this was the only reason I completed my book on time). Whatever way is going best hold yourself accountable is perfect!

Remember that it’s ok to fail.

A huge reason we worry about being perfect is we’re afraid to fail. It would SUCK to pour loads of blood, sweat, and tears into something, only to have it fail in the end. So we twiddle away trying to be perfect, and may never reach the finish line.

This is when it’s critical to remind yourself that failure isn’t the end. Even if you don’t get the sales you want, have to move back, or have to let people’s hopes down, it was not for nothing. You learned from this experience and–hopefully–grew from it.

Overcoming perfectionism is very challenging and it will take time. But don’t let dreams pass you by because you’re a prisoner of perfection. Buy yourself a planner and get yourself some life mottos (I use this Kate Spade Notebook and this Motto of the Day Card Set for motivation).

Then check out my article on how to start taking action as a dreamer trying to overcome perfectionism.

Stop being a perfectionist


  • Zac

    I do this a lot too – I’ll never release anything (website, Facebook etc) unless I know it’s perfect. I need to work on this too, thanks for the tips

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