Selective Perfectionism

Getty Images: flytosky11

Trying to be perfect — and expecting those around you to be perfect — creates a great deal of stress AND reduces productivity.

So let’s think about why perfectionism, instead of making us more productive, reduces our productivity.

Just for starters, consider how much time it “costs” to be perfect. Imagine that getting a task to 90% takes one unit of time (and that unit might be an hour, 6 hours, or 3 days). If you are going to take that task to “perfect,” or 100%, then it will take you another whole “unit” of time. Do the math. It takes twice as long to do something perfectly as it does to do it to a 90% standard.

There are times we need work toward perfection…and other times, we don’t. Here are ten productivity tips for practicing what I call “selective perfectionism:”

Tasks that probably need to be as close to perfect as humanly possible include:

There are tasks in any of the above categories that do not need to go all the way to 100%, but then there are the others that deserve every bit of attention and practice we can possibly commit.

I’m sure you have a few others that you may think need to get close to perfect, but here are some tasks that do NOT need to be taken to perfect (and where 90% will probably work fine):

If you are a perfectionist (and you might know this to be true — or just ask those around you), then take these ideas to heart, please. I always tell people in my workshops that if you try to take everything to 100%, then you won’t have the time to take the most important things to “perfect.”

Practice selective perfectionism, please.

We all get a little behind sometimes — at home, at work, in our classes, in our chores, and in our many projects. But other times, something much worse happens. If you feel angry (with yourself or others), depressed, fearful, or like you’re drowning, you’re in need of Strategies for When You Are Seriously and Scarily Behind. Registrants will receive an exclusive MP3 download of the class, an extensive packet of handouts, and more! With the expert strategies included, you’ll finally experience the calm and comfort you want and need (at least you’ll experience much more consistently!)

--

--

Meggin McIntosh, “The PhD of Productivity®”, invests time & energy with people who seek ways to be overjoyed instead of overwhelmed. https://meggin.com

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Meggin McIntosh

Meggin McIntosh, “The PhD of Productivity®”, invests time & energy with people who seek ways to be overjoyed instead of overwhelmed. https://meggin.com