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Perfectionism is a Disease

This video is the 3rd in a series about fostering academic success from The Raising Happiness Homestudy. Watch the rest of the videos here.

“They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they’d make up their minds.”
–Wilt Chamberlain

Video Notes: Combat Perfectionism

(1) Reflect on the following:

Perfectionism is a particular form of unhappiness; moreover, it is a myth that perfectionism leads to success. Do you see perfectionism as a problem for you? Your children? What do you do that might be fostering perfectionism? Do you value your children’s character over their achievements? If so, how do you communicate this to them?

If perfectionism is a problem for you or your children, script your change.

What is the specific situation in which you tend to foster perfectionism?

What will you do differently in that situation?

What will you say?

(2) Practice “satisficing”: Model it, teach it directly, and practice together. Here are three simple steps for practicing saticficing:

1. Outline the criteria for success. You might also want to set time limits with some kids (or for yourself).

2. Choose the first option that meets all of your criteria for success. This means truly stopping when those “finished” signs appear.

3. Focus on the positive aspects of the choice you made or project you completed. What worked out well? What do you like about it? Resist the temptation to think of what “might have been.”

If you would like to download the audio version of this video to listen to in your car or on the go, click the link below.

This post is taken from “The Raising Happiness Homestudy,” an online course I created as a companion to my book Raising Happiness: 10 Simple Steps for More Joyful Kids and Happier Parents. I’m sharing one “class” from this online course per week here, on my blog. Want to see previous posts? Just click this Raising Happiness Homestudy tag. Enjoy!