Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

O'Reilly logo
The Everything Guide to Coping with Perfectionism

Book Description

Find your perfect balance!

Perfectionism is an admirable quality, right? After all, what's wrong with working hard to reach lofty goals? But sometimes perfectionism can go too far--well beyond pulling extra hours at work to beat a deadline or cleaning the house until it shines. Toxic perfectionism can result in obsessive behavior, damaged self-esteem, depression, and even physical ailments.

In The Everything Guide to Coping with Perfectionism, you'll find tips and techniques to help you recognize symptoms of toxic perfectionism and learn how to introduce flexibility and balance into your life.

This easy-to-use guide includes information on:

  • The surprising link between perfectionism and procrastination
  • Eating disorders and the role perfectionism plays in their development
  • The relationship between obsessive behavior and anxiety
  • How toxic perfectionism manifests in children
In addition, you'll learn that you don't necessarily need to "fix" perfectionism--you can mold perfectionist behavior into healthy habits and harness your high ambitions to create achievable and positive goals.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Dedication
  4. Contents
  5. Acknowledgments
  6. Top 10 Signs of Suffering from Perfectionism
  7. Introduction
  8. Chapter 1: The Basics of Perfectionism
    1. Definition: What Is Perfectionism?
    2. Well, What’s Wrong with That?
    3. Understanding Perfectionism and Its Effect on Your Life
    4. Toxic Perfectionism
    5. The Urge to Complete at All Costs
    6. The Seduction of Praise
    7. The Symptoms of Perfectionism
  9. Chapter 2: The Root Causes of Perfectionism
    1. Domestication and the Big Dream of Society
    2. Family of Origin Causes
    3. Societal Causes
    4. Effects of School and Church
    5. Effects of the Media
  10. Chapter 3: The Limiting Effects of Perfectionism
    1. Getting Out of Negative Cycles
    2. Perfectionism, Procrastination, Paralysis
    3. Substituting Other, More Satisfying Behaviors
    4. Marshal Your Marvelous Creativity
    5. The Perils of Black-and-White Thinking
    6. What Can You Do Instead?
  11. Chapter 4: The Difficulties of Perfectionism
    1. Pressure to Be Perfect
    2. Investment in Identities
    3. The Power of Choice
    4. Internal Locus of Control
    5. Extremism in Hobbies or Volunteer Work
    6. What Can You Do Instead?
  12. Chapter 5: The Concept of the Adult Child
    1. Effects of Alcoholism and Other Family Dysfunction
    2. Birth Order
    3. Beware of the Internalized Critical Parent
    4. Superhero Parents
    5. Arrested Development
    6. What Can You Do Instead?
  13. Chapter 6: The Relationship of Perfectionism to Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder
    1. What Is Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder?
    2. Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder in the Family
    3. Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder in Yourself
    4. But It Seems So Important!
    5. Urgency/Emergency
    6. What Can You Do Instead?
  14. Chapter 7: The Relationship of Perfectionism to Overeating and Other Eating Disorders
    1. Overeating in the Family
    2. What’s Your Eating Style?
    3. Substitute a More Pleasurable Activity
    4. Learning Some New Sensory Pleasures
    5. What Can You Do Instead?
  15. Chapter 8: The Relationship of Perfectionism to Alcoholism
    1. Perspective of John Bradshaw’s Work
    2. Alcoholism in the Family
    3. Are You a Drinker?
    4. Learning Other Ways to Have Fun and Be with Others
    5. What Can You Do Instead?
  16. Chapter 9: The Relationship of Perfectionism to Other Addictions
    1. Workaholism
    2. Sex Addiction
    3. Gambling
    4. Overachieving
    5. Overspending
    6. What Can You Do Instead?
  17. Chapter 10: The Relationship of Perfectionism to Mental Illness
    1. Mental Illness in the Family
    2. Are You Mentally Ill?
    3. Just Act Normal
    4. Rethinking Relationship Choices
    5. Managing Anxiety
    6. What Can You Do Instead?
  18. Chapter 11: Perfectionism and Disease
    1. But Isn’t It about Germs?
    2. Don’t the Doctors Know Everything?
  19. Chapter 12: Methods of Treatment
  20. Chapter 13: A Thorough Self-Examination
    1. Your Cultural Mandates
  21. Chapter 14: Rebuilding Self-Esteem
  22. Chapter 15: Perfectionism and the Only Child or Gifted Child
    1. Alice Miller’s Drama of the Gifted Child
  23. Chapter 16: Deep Self-Acceptance
    1. Julia Cameron’s Ideas—The Artist’s Date
  24. Chapter 17: Choices
    1. Brainstorm When You’re Stuck
  25. Chapter 18: Decision-Making
    1. Automatic Pilot—Correct, Correct, Correct
  26. Chapter 19: Spiritual Solutions
  27. Chapter 20: The Discipline of Forgiveness
    1. But Am I Condoning Terrible Wrongs?
    2. Forgiveness as a Shift in Focus
    3. Relationship to Physical Health
    4. Examples of Radical Forgiveness
    5. What Can You Do Instead?
  28. Chapter 21: Moving Forward with Freedom
  29. Appendix A: Helpful Websites
  30. Appendix B: Additional Resources
  31. Copyright