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1 Jul 2009

Perfect Prefect

Any journey becomes painful when you are a perfectionist... for the perfectionist as well as the victims of one. Yet, most people see it as a positive trait! Until they have to work with one, I bet.

When I was fresh out of college and preparing for interviews, someone told me to say 'perfectionist' when asked what my shortcoming was, in an interview. It was supposed to hit 2 birds with one stone - (a) Tell the interviewer that you had no negatives and you were perfect for the job (b) Tell the interviewer that your work was always of high quality. I never realized back then but having been on both sides of the interviewing panel, I can say for sure today that it does not work. When you say in an interview that you are a perfectionist, it only leads to more questions because, unfortunately your answer is not perfect, it's too abstract.

Over the years, I've met more and more instances of the bane of perfectionism. I know a person who cannot understand what you're saying if you didn't get the vowels and grammar right in your email. It's a habit hard to kill. It starts with convincing yourself that it's okay to make a mistake and not chastise yourself for a cluttered desk. You need to ignore the urge to fix things. It's almost like giving up smoking... the withdrawal symptoms, the quaking fingers, the whole package! Also, there's no help group to boot. Like all mental illnesses, it's not really recognized as something serious enough to warrant help. Pity!

Moral of the story: Being perfect isn't quite perfect!

Think twice before you say "perfect" next time. Actually, why would you want to do that? You don't have to be perfect and say "perfect" in not perfect situations. Sigh, there you go!

1 comment:

  1. I hadnt heard of this 'perfection' thing till now. Interesting!