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Any other exhausted perfectionists out there?

(9 Posts)
whatsummer Sat 16-Jul-11 20:16:17


Identifying with the P label is fairly new to me, despite the fact I have dedicated most of my 35 years to being one....

Biggest issue for me is that I overeat to cope with the fact I am not living up to my own ridiculously high standards. But striving for my unobtainable reality affects every part of my life from relationships to work to general behaviour - nearly always late as I am trying to "do" so much stuff instead of leaving in time.

Anyone else feel like this? Trying to let go a little and seeing a counsellor, but just wondered if there are any MNs who feel the same.

Anyone a recovering perfectionist?

Ineedmetime Sat 16-Jul-11 23:18:27

I used to be when ds was a baby but I found out eventually I just couldn't be. now 7 years down the line and with another dc I'm learning to just go with the flow. I would love to have a perfectly tidy house but I know its just not going to happen anytime soon! I write long to do lists but never get it all done.

mamster Thu 21-Jul-11 23:27:52

Yes!! Desperately trying to not be. How are you getting on?

gingerroots Thu 21-Jul-11 23:38:34

YES me too!! I constantly critisise DP for not doing things right too. I know it must be awful for him but don't seem to be able to help myself. Suffering from PND and have been referred for CBT- so desperately hoping this will finally help. I think it is very tiring being a perfectionist.

mamster Thu 21-Jul-11 23:48:19

Yes, it is. Also suffering from PND. Tied myself in knots. Worst thing is not being able to control the kids. Drove me crazy.

ladydynamo Fri 22-Jul-11 09:10:32

Can't believe I'm seeing this thread today- just yesterday the psychologist I have been seeing for the last few months told me that my problem is being a perfectionist and continual self criticism for not living up to my own standards.

This includes things like the state of my house, my apppearance, etc which is really exhausting as have baby now, more mess to deal with and large weight gain that kills me mentally. A lot of it is about wanting the outside world believe that I am ok, "normal", coping with life.

What I find most debilitating is that even the smallest of decisions are crippling for me because I always think I did the wrong thing- I agonise, panic, and then I mentally torture myself for my "stupidity". This is the most exhausting part and kind of sucks the joy out of life and makes me hellish to live with as I'm always moaning about things not being right.

Its the source of SO much anxiety and self loathing being like ths but I also fear "letting myself go". Oh, to be easy going!!

mamster Fri 22-Jul-11 09:42:05

Yes, I'm the same. The decisions thing is tough. I spend ages sweating over making the smallest decisions. After DS2 I had PND and the doc diagnosed anxiety too. With medication things are better. I also did talking therapies in which I discovered I'm a worrier. I argued with them for ages but to no avail. They all think I'm a worrier.

Anyway, I'm getting better. The knowledge helps even if I don't like the labels 'perfectionist' 'worrier' 'depressed'. I practice deep breathing and try to do something on my to-do list as often as possible so that I feel like things are getting done. I'm better around the house. I still get agitated if the place is dirty but I handle mess much better. Trying to remember what life is about. One thing I learnt at talking therapy is to go mentally list the good things of the day, no matter how small. I do this with the breathing and it helps me relax.

I really feel for you. When I feel like I'm going over the top (I've learnt to recognise it) I ask my husband or friends to help me. Or I try to just go with things. Do something that's not totally planned out - like a day out - just do it and when it turns out great it gives you the confidence to try it again.

Take a deep breath and just go for it. You can be care free!!

ladydynamo Fri 22-Jul-11 20:45:21

Thats great you are getting so much better mamster. I have found that pregnancy and having a new baby has brought out the absolute worst in this side of me as its the whole being out of control thing I have found really hard to handle. And there are so many more decisions and "standards" I'm not up to to beat myself up about iyswim.

Oh, I also do the overeating thing OP- combination of increased appetite caused by meds and very compulsive self destructive behaviour.

mamster Fri 22-Jul-11 23:22:22

I dont know if it helps but I don't overeat though I do think about food all the time and I'm anxious if I don't know where the next meal is coming from. I do this food planning thing (yes, control) where I eat at least 6 times a day. 3 small meals and 3 snacks (large banana, packet of hula hoops, oat bar thing, yogurt, 3 plain biscuits, an apple, some grapes, bowl strawberries, small slice of fruit cake/banana cake, flap jack (also good for energy) etc). It works great for energy levels and makes me feel like I always have food. Takes some planning though to have the right foods around at the right time, but worth it. I also always eat breakfast.

I am miserable and tired if I don't eat.

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