Stress in idealists Relentless perfectionism Excessively high standards for achievement Neurotic perfectionism
The desire to be perfect, or to perform perfectly, can encourage high achievement but it can also make the achievers implacable self-critics who overreact to what they perceive as failure. Perfectionism increases the risk of depression and of suicide more strongly than does an attitude of hopelessness. In their desire to be perfect, perfectionists often do not seek help in dealing with depression until they are in extreme crises, and, if they seek help, they do not respond well to prevailing treatments because they tend to interpret small successes as failures.
Neurotic perfectionists were often raised with harsh parental standards. They grew up thinking that they must be perfect in order to be loved, that no matter what they do, it is never quite good enough.
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