Battling Perfectionism

Dr. Paul Hewitt and Dr. Gordon Flett determined that there are basically three types of perfectionists.

  • The self-oriented perfectionist
    • This person strives to be the very best and they turn their drive into achieving and reaching goals. They use their perfectionism as a skill and are highly adaptive.
  • The other-oriented perfectionist
    • This person expects others to be perfect. This can lead to problems interacting with others.
  • The socially prescribed perfectionist
    • This person believes others expect them to be perfect. They feel a strong desire for the approval of others and can be very self-critical.

The key to being a perfectionist is self-compassion. No one can be perfect all the time and when mistakes are made, they shouldn’t be seen as defeats, but as opportunities for growth and learning.

Michael Hawkins

Michael Hawkins, MA, LPC is a licensed professional counselor at the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital (VMTH). With almost 25 years of experience as a counselor, he works with clinicians, students, staff, and clients—compassionately attending to the human needs that arise in the practice of veterinary medicine. Counselor’s Corner is a blog devoted to that purpose. BACK TO BLOG