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There are two types of perfectionism among both men and women.

The first is, perfectionism regarding the process. For example, you miss a deadline because you become obsessive and almost compulsive about details and having it be perfect. There’s a lot of anxiety about disappointing people and being judged. Typically this happens when someone has a childhood with critical parents.

The other type of perfectionism has to do with completion. This means you may never miss a deadline.  You may also be the type of person who will rarely show up late for an appointment. Your perfection-seeking is around getting the task done: completion. Your anxiety has to do less with details and more about getting the task done on time. You may always feel a sense of urgency around everything you do. Rushing all the time.  This usually comes from a childhood where parents are impatient with children and always rushing and pushing them.

It is a beneficial to know which type of perfectionist you are. Then, if you want to make changes, go back to your childhood and see where this comes from. Our core beliefs, that are created in childhood,  shape us and influence how we act. In the end perfectionists fear judgment and disappointing people.

Once you go back and are aware of the core beliefs and the source, you can heal them. Write a letter to your parents, but don’t send it. Go back and process the old hurt, disappointment and fear. You may  still have perfectionist tendencies but you will notice that the severity will decrease and you will feel more in control of your perfectionism and your life. You will feel freedom in your choices and not run by fear of being judged by others. There is no such thing as perfect. All you can do is try your best. Let that be good enough.