You know the feeling. You have high expectations for yourself, and you won’t quit until the job is done right. You try harder and work longer hours, but it is never enough. You’re keyed up, you can’t sleep, you snap at your Spouse.
It’s normal to want to do things well. To be proficient at your job, have an organized home and generally feel like your life is in order. However, for you, the pressure to perform doesn’t stop there. You worry constantly, belittle yourself, and harshly judge your performance. You are rapidly entering the critical danger zone of burning out. Unless you change something, you run the risk of alienating friends and family, and developing physical symptoms of your internalized pressure.
The following techniques will help you reduce the pressure you place on yourself:
Monitor your internal self talk
When you start to criticize and berate yourself, STOP. Realize that the pressure in a situation is often pressure that you place on yourself. Choose softer way to talk to yourself. “I know I need to complete the task, and I have the required skills to do it”.
Telling yourself that you have more anxiety than others is counterproductive. First of all, you don’t really know if it’s true. When you’re not doing something as well as you’d like, or you’re having problems because of anxiety, try to coolly and calmly accept it. When you try harder and place pressure on yourself to do things in a precise and perfect way, you make yourself miserable, and you may actually hurt your performance.
Don’t accept other people’s judgement. Remember that other people’s opinions do not determine how you feel about yourself or whether you are a worthy human being. You can set your own standards. You can do things for your own enjoyment and growth, and not for other people.Accept your limitations. Nobody can be perfect, and besides, there is no “perfect” way to do anything.
Incorporate affirmations into your day
Examples of affirmations are: “there is no pressure because I don’t have to be perfect. “I won’t expect that of myself any longer”. “I am satisfied with my efforts. I just do what I need to do.” “I can still be happy because I am doing things for my own personal satisfaction”.
Find a positive way to blow off steam
Vigorous exercise, especially outside, releases endorphins, naturally occurring feel good hormones. Relaxation through yoga or meditation are wonderful ways to reduce stress.
Stop analyzing every situation
.Just get things done! If you don’t do something a certain way, the consequences will be something you can deal with.
Finally, it is helpful to accept the fact that sometimes you are nervous and anxious. We all are! In certain situations, a little anxiety actually improves performance. Talking to an experienced Therapist about these techniques, as well as, the origins of your perfectionism, can dramatically reduce your self-imposed pressure and increase your happiness!