For an appointment:
Call  917-692-3867
For an appointment : Call  917-692-3867


Having high standards or striving for excellence is a good thing as it show a desire to grow and develop your character. It can also push you to reach your peak level of performance. Perfectionism, on the other hand, is setting a standard that are so high that they either cannot be met, or can be met at a great cost, even destructive cost. The underline belief under perfectionism that anything short of perfection is terrible and a failure, and that even minor imperfections will lead to negative consequences.

spiral2grow, a leading provider in self esteem and self confidence counseling in New York City, has professionals that include perfectionism psychotherapists and counselors, who are expert in overcoming perfectionism and improving self esteem and effectiveness. spiral2grow, located in midtown Manhattan at 260 Madison Avenue #8023, New York, NY 10016, offers techniques to overcome perfectionism, build effectiveness and take actions despite fear in a variety of formats: Personal Counseling, self esteem – perfectionism group and self esteem-perfectionism workshop.

Overcome Perfectionism

Perfectionism is one of the most common symptoms of low self esteem and confidence. Perfectionism can destructively chip away at your healthy self-esteem. There is a definite relationship between the need to be perfect and low self-esteem. People who “need” to look at themselves and expect nothing less than perfection with everything they do, are setting themselves up for self-sabotage.

Abraham Maslow in his book “ Motivation and Personality wrote: “There are no perfect human beings! Persons can be found who are good, very good indeed, in fact, great. There do in fact exist creators, seers, sages, saints, shakers, and movers… even if they are uncommon and do not come by the dozen. And yet these very same people can at times be boring, irritating, petulant, selfish, angry, or depressed. To avoid disillusionment with human nature, we must first give up our illusions about it.

  • Causes of Perfectionism
    • Others only value you because of the things you can do and have accomplished.
    • Your self esteem might have been based primarily from external standards. This leaves you defenseless and extremely sensitive to other people’s opinion and criticism.
    • You probably decided that being perfect is your only defense from such criticism.
    • Some of the reasons for perfectionism are listed below.
    • Fear of failure is among of the reasons for perfectionism. Often times, perfectionists blame their failures to lack of personal worth.
    • Being afraid to make mistakes. For perfectionists, mistakes and failure are the same. They miss opportunities to learn and grow by living their lives avoiding mistakes.
    • Fear of rejection is a one of the most common reasons. Perfectionists are often afraid that if other people will see their flaws, they will be rejected.
    • Rigid Rules. Perfectionists live with rigid rules structured by a never-ending list of “should”.
    • When measuring yourself by what you don’t accomplish rather than by what you do accomplish, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment and frustration. The need to be perfect quickly leads to a distrust of the ability to judge what’s good and what isn’t. When you can’t trust your own feelings of self-worth, you look to others to define and affirm your self-esteem. Perfectionism only allows one way to enhance self-esteem — that’s by being perfect. As such, when a perfectionist believes she isn’t perfect, she feels guilty, frustrated and unhappy. Perfectionism is a never-ending negative cycle of self-abuse.
  • Key Elements to Overcome Perfectionism
    • Stop comparing yourself to others. We are each unique in our talents, abilities and personalities. When you compare yourself to others and wish you were as creative/talented/successful as them, you completely overlook your own strengths and abilities. It’s great to be inspired by other people, but use that motivation to fuel your own work while you focus on your best.
    • Set realistic expectations. A shortcut to misery is setting completely unrealistic expectations for your work. It’s good to have ambitions and aims for your work, and to push yourself to do the best you can. But be realistic, or you’ll sabotage your best work before it’s even begun!
    • Balance high hopes with harsh reality. Perfectionists have expectations and goals that simply can’t be met! To overcome perfectionism, you need to balance great expectations with reality. Accept that your limits – and other people’s limits – are real. You simply can’t create perfection.
    • Acknowledge your achievements. In the endless quest for perfectionism, you completely lose track of all that you have achieve, and all the progress you have made. To combat this, keep a chart for your milestones, and each time you achieve something, jot it down on your chart. Each month, review how much you’ve created and achieved. You’ll be surprised how much you’d been overlooking, blinded by those perfectionist ways. Learn to appreciate and honor your effort, the journey, and your accomplishments.
    • Take action towards your goals. What have you always wanted to do, but didn’t because you were afraid of failing? Try it now! Audition for a community play, send a resume for a job, ask someone on a date. Don’t worry if you fail and have to try again. Accept mistakes; learn from them and despite feeling bad, move on to what is actionable. Reflect on how this process of learning from failure applies to other areas of your life. Focus on your positive attitude and effort, which will lead you toward fulfilling life.
    • Recognize goals/ideas are directions, not absolutes – Continue to hold your ideals and set goals because these serve as growth-levers and motivation sources. The goals are not the problems – it’s the attachment towards the goals which you need to work on. Accept your goals as directions to work towards and not absolutes which you need to achieve. Commit yourself to the pursuits but do not attach yourself to them. It does not matter if you do not reach the goals because the goals are just pointers toward your visions to reach; they are not who you are or who you should be.
    • Enjoy the process and look at the big picture – The big picture matters more than the tiny details. The process is the longest part of achievement – enjoy it! Find ways to lighten it up – learn to laugh at yourself, take things positively, rest/eat/sleep/play when it is time to, take part in enriching recreational activities.
    • Express your emotions. To overcome perfectionism, learn to accept your painful emotions (regret, disappointment, depression) – but don’t ruminate on them. Rather than having thoughts playing in an endless loop in our heads (ruminating), you would be better off expressing your thoughts verbally or in writing.
More about Psychotherapy and Self esteem
  • – essays, articles, books and information covering the subject of self-esteem, self-acceptance
  • - The American National Association for Self-Esteem (NASE) was created with the purpose of integrating self-esteem into the fabric of American society so that every individual experiences personal worth and happiness.
  • - Practical guide for creating, building and maintaining self esteem and confidence with awareness
  • The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem - a great book by Nathaniel Branden


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