Being a perfectionist: good or bad?

IMG_7447IMG_7445At twenty-four I am fully aware of who I am- faults and flaws included. Among all of the many things I am, and am not, I happen to be a perfectionist. But, recently I’ve been questioning which list this would fall under. I find myself torn about whether it’s a good or in fact a bad thing? The word,Β perfectionist‘ is described as ‘a person who refuses to accept any standard short of perfection’. For those who know me, alarm bells will be ringing when hearing this as it describes me down to a tee. My standards are so high they are pretty much unattainable which incidentally means I’m already setting myself up to fail as things are never good enough, I overthink everything because I am always questioning if I could have done something better, I end up completely consumed over anything and everything if I don’t believe it was good enough. Whether it’s more I should be doing, saying or even feeling, in my mind I have never done enough. I don’t think I actually knew I was a perfectionist until I started blogging.
IMG_7446IMG_7448When it comes to shoots we can take a hundred pictures and I will only be happy with perhaps six-eight of them. For many reasons- hair, face, posture, angle. The list is endless. I say to Dan,Β ‘it needs to be perfect‘. He always responds saying the same thing, ‘stop worrying about it being perfect and just be you’. The truth is, nothing in this world is perfect and in actual fact imperfection can be one of the most beautiful things about situations. I know this. BUT applying it to your work is so hard. When it comes to editing the pictures I find that I’m so critical on myself to the point where some photographs I just will never even publish. This isn’t even because I’m worried about what people will think, it’s simply down to my perfectionism and in my mind, it not being good enough. I set the bar so high that it isn’t attainable.
IMG_7448IMG_7363The nightmare for any perfectionist is comparing yourself to others. Look, we are twenty-something women, and we are human. EverybodyΒ has felt pangs of jealousy – even if it’s once over something somebody else has got, done or is doing. Scrolling through other people’s Instagram’s can get me practically having a bitch fit because I am comparing my own work to theirs. This doesn’t mean I’m not happy for the other person, it just simply makes me focus on my own work and whether mine is good enough or not. In my mind my Instagram feedΒ needsΒ to be perfect, and I need to have the absolute best portrayal of myself I can possibly have. This is unrealistic though. I’m not perfect, none of us are and so I know that it isn’t viable but, being a perfectionist, I still want what I can’t possibly achieve because that’s just how I’m wired. You can understand the pressure this puts on a twenty-something.Β IMG_7443IMG_7362Now for the positives. By being a perfectionist, I never do anything half-heatedly. Everything I do is given 110% and if it isn’t very good, I will re-do it until it’s as good as it can possibly be. This can be great in terms of blogging, writing, work. I dare you to find a perfectionist that isn’t organised and I bet you won’t find a single one. If you aren’t organised, obviously everything will fall to shit and you won’t get the best out of any situation so I do try to be as organised as I can be which granted, can be a very good thing. It’s no secret to those that do know me that I’m never late. In fact I’m the bitch that’s sat at the table, pretending to be on her phone whilst waiting for the other people to arrive. In my mind, there’s nothing worst than being late. A) you miss out on things b) it’s so stressful and c) it’s rude – so again, this actually works in my favour.

However, I think we can all agree that the cons perhaps outweigh the pros. Nothing is ever going to be perfect because frankly, we live in an imperfect world and this isn’t a bad thing. If everything was perfect I guess there wouldn’t be any excitement at all would there? Putting yourself against a standard that doesn’t even exist, does, when you put it like that, sound utterly ridiculous. From now on, I’m definitely going to continue to do my best, BUT when it isn’t perfect, no more losing my mind, instead I’m going to just accept that I’m not perfect.

| Leather jacket: Zara | Body white shirt: H&M Trend | Jeans: Topshop | Black boots: Autograph (similar) | Bag: Mango |

About Hannah Whiting

Self-confessed perfectionist. Fashion enthusiast. One day I will live in New York.

One Response to Being a perfectionist: good or bad?

  1. Holly White says:

    I am such a perfectionist so totally relate to this! I think you’re right though – the cons probably do outweigh the pros! Life isn’t perfect after all! Xx

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