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Perfectionist DD - helping her for future

(9 Posts)
narmada Sat 29-Sep-12 11:41:03

Another tread on here has made me want to ask a q of my own.

I am a Perfectionist, and have had anxiety and depression partly I believe as a consequence.

DD is showing signs of perfectionism at age 5. I would really like to give her the right tools to deal with this throughout her life and have been thinking if ways to do so. So far I have come up with : consciously modelinga 'good enough' attitude; verbally reassuring her that things don't have to be perfect; offering constructive criticism where appropriate about minor things si the gets used to the idea that everyone gets things wrong sometimes.

Does anyone have any other ideas of what I could be doing?

Mrscog Sat 29-Sep-12 11:49:51

This is too much of an abstract concept (probably) for a 5 year old, but might help you, and certainly would be good for the future....

I was a perfectionist for years, and it really hindered my progress in life. I then had the most wonderful manager, who once said to me in an appraisal:

'you know what MrsCog, perfectionism in itself an inperfection because of all the downsides that come along with it, you'll never be perfect until you start allowing some things in your life to be imperfect.'

THIS rang true with me immediately, it was as though someone had switched a light on. Since then, I've actually revelled in being 'perfect' at spotting which things to be imperfect at (cleaning the house being one of them grin), and my life has improved so much, and I get better results at the things that really mean a lot to me.

HTH smile

amillionyears Sat 29-Sep-12 19:27:35

wow Mrscog.
I know a couple of people that are perfectionists,and quite frankly,suffer for it.
I will pass your words on to them,it may help them a lot.Thanks.

crazygracieuk Sat 29-Sep-12 19:30:12

Let her see you mess up and model how to deal with mess ups.
For example if dinner is burned then you can start cooking again or cut off the burnt bits.

narmada Sat 29-Sep-12 22:05:42

Mrscog, thanks so much for your message. I think she prob woulnd't understand that reasoning at the moment but maybe will soon s o I will remember it to try in a year or so's time.

CrazygracieUK, she sees me mess up plenty, ha ha smile I shall burn a few more things in future grin

WithanAnotE Thu 04-Oct-12 21:23:55

namarda I think you may be worrying a little too much. A lot of kids like order, structure etc but it doesn't mean they will become perfectionists.

However, a very good book to read on the subject is

It helped me grin.... So the DP says hmm

narmada Thu 04-Oct-12 23:34:42

withanA you could well be right smile and also there could be a degree of projection going on here .......

dysfunctionalme Fri 05-Oct-12 00:28:56

My daughter and I are similar to you and your dd. Her first teacher was very clued up and noticed right away that dd was hindered by quest for perfection. Dealt with it by backing right off, no pressure, so she could find her way in her own time. Also she wasn't allowed to use an eraser, but was encouraged to cross out and keep writing, or just underline words that she felt unsure about. In time it has worked v well and I felt so proud when, at 8, I noticed her homework book was infact quite messy grin Big progress! I also try v hard to play down my own mistakes as children take so much from our cues.

SummerRain Fri 05-Oct-12 00:40:57

I'm the furthest thing fron a perfectionist you could imagine but ds2 is too the point of really damaging himself. He had tongue tie and is very speech delayed, his perfectionism compounds this tenfold as he won't even try a sound if he doesn't think he can do it perfectly. He won't draw as he doesn't like not being able to do it perfectly. He's extremely anxious and gets frustrated to the point of meltdown at the slightest thing.

He's only 3.... I'm hoping he can relax as he gets older sad

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