8 Actions That Get You Past Your Perfectionism

mindset productivity Mar 02, 2021

Perfectionism can cause paralysis, figuratively speaking. It creates fear and stops you from living authentically. When you’re worried about making everything perfect, nothing gets done. 

Explore these tips to get past your perfectionism so you can move forward: 

1) Pay attention to your inner thoughts

  • Perfectionism can sneak up on you and take over your thoughts. Listen to your self-talk. 
  • Intentionally redirect negative thoughts such as, “You’re not good enough,” or, “Not like that! It must be perfect!”
  • Substitute these negative thoughts with positive thoughts, like, “I am doing the best I can! Skills take development. Development requires practice. Practice allows us to live a skillful life, or life of mastery. Even if I did not perform my best, anything worth doing is worth doing poorly.”

2) Just get things done

  • When you’re too focused on making everything perfect, it slows you down. Instead, remember to stick to your schedule and meet deadlines according to the timeframe you’ve made for yourself.  
  • Make your standards realistic. Focus on completing tasks on time instead of getting lost in the tiny details of each assignment. 
  • Take action. Keep moving forward. Remember, you can improve, if you need to, as you go along. 
  • Remember that intentionality is a practice. It requires consistency and willingness to extend compassion to yourself when you’re not at your best, which, to a perfectionist, is always.

3) Forgive yourself and others

  • Forgiveness can free you from perfectionism. Remind yourself that no one is perfect and everyone has faults.
  • Learn to forgive yourself and others for mistakes. To forgive is to surrender your desire to see the person that has harmed you punished. Try to find beauty in the imperfect. You are perfectly imperfect, just like the rest of us.

4) Keep in mind that second chances are usually available

  • Even if you can’t do something perfectly the first time, you may have the opportunity to fix it later. And when it is not possible, it only means another, probably more favorable, door has just opened. Rejection is oftentimes divine redirection.

5) Celebrate tiny wins

  • Instead of focusing on what still needs to be done, focus on your wins. Each time you finish something it’s a small victory. It’s important to celebrate your accomplishments - even small ones.
  • Take a moment to celebrate and say thank you. Do something special for yourself. 

6) Avoid being overwhelmed by a mistake

  • Perfectionists can get upset when things go wrong and tend to overly blame themselves. You can take responsibility for your role in the mistake without being overwhelmed by it. 
  • Learn to reframe the experience. Focus on the positive aspects, such as the lessons the mistake has taught you. 
  • Keep in mind that failure is a normal part of the journey to success.
  • Avoid spending days going over the mistake in your mind. Learn to move past it.


7) Find balance in your life

  • Perfectionism can creep into many parts of your life. It can take over your family, relationships, and career. It’s important to strive for balance. 
  • Try to avoid focusing on just one aspect of your life. Instead, keep things balanced by spending time with friends, family, and coworkers. 
  • Avoid neglecting important things such as your hobbies, personal health, or children. 

Side Mention: For "Solopreneurs" (An Entrepreneur who does everything, pretty much alone, until a team is built) Check Out This Guide: "The Productive Solopreneur"

8) Recondition Your Mind

  • Changing how you think about things can be a powerful way to combat perfectionism. The way you view the world can influence every part of your being. Learn to find the good in everything and be happy with it.
  • Do you have an all or nothing attitude that paints everything in black or white? Or can you see the gray areas? 
  • The key to avoiding perfectionism is to realize that the world isn’t divided into perfect parts that can always be analyzed. Instead, it’s a complicated mix that has many moving parts. The same applies to your mind. 
  • Focus on making progress. Even a failure is progress because it moves you closer to finding success.

You can learn to move past perfectionism. Try these tips and see a therapist if you need more help. Once you free your mind from perfectionism, you’ll feel happier and success will come easier to you.