what to say if you are called a perfectionist

You know you’re a perfectionist if you have really high standards, unbeatable persistence and you are driven to make things happen. People complain about perfectionists because they set such high standards for themselves and other people to live up to.

Being a perfectionist is both a blessing and it can be a curse, Martha Stewart built an empire using her critical eye to turn something that looked ordinary into something extraordinary. Yet Martha drives a lot of her staff bonkers with her demanding ways.

You will find perfectionists are airline pilots, architects, copy editors, surgeons. Yikes, where would the world be without talented people who can pay attention to the details? Yeah, people like to complain about people who are obsessed about getting things just right, but nobody wants to hire a sloppy surgeon.

Next time someone is giving you a hard time because of your perfectionist tendencies, use one of the clever replies and make the person think twice before they criticize you again.

Best comebacks for being called a perfectionist

1. As long as everything is EXACTLY the way I want it, I’m totally flexible.

2. Maybe no one wants to work for a perfectionist, but if you’re hiring a plumber to fix your toilet you sure want him to be one.

3. You say I’m a perfectionist and my standards are too high. That’s alright. I don’t care what a slacker who can’t do things right thinks.

4. I’m not a perfectionist, can I show you the right way to do that?

5. In some situations being a perfectionist is a good thing an other times it can slow down progress.

5. Nobody wants to be the person with low standards.

6. Some folks are just detail oriented.

7. Flattery will get you everywhere.

Definition of a perfectionist

A person who possesses a strong desire to achieve perfection and excellence in everything they do can be described as a perfectionist. They have high standards for themselves. Perfectionists may self-criticise and feel dissatisfied when their work falls short.

How to deal with being called a perfectionist

Being called a perfectionist can sometimes feel like a double-edged sword. Some people see it as a compliment, while others might view it as a criticism. Here, we give you a few tips on how to handle when you are referred to as a perfectionist:

  1. Recognize your asset: Realize that this quality is not a weakness but a strength. When you’re a perfectionist, you have a strong desire to do everything as well as possible. You always try to be the best version of yourself, whether at work or in your personal life.
  1. Be mindful of the pitfalls: Know that it can also bring some bad things, like stress, anxiety, and being too hard on ourselves. It’s important to be aware of these problems and find a good balance.
  1. Don’t be so hard on yourself: It’s time to be kind to ourselves and stop being so hard on ourselves. Remember that no one is perfect. We all trip and fall down now and then, but that doesn’t make us who we are.
  1. Be realistic about your goals: It’s important to have goals that are within reach, both for yourself and your work. Don’t go too far and set goals that are too hard to reach. Trust me, it’s better to set your sights on something you can reach than to set yourself up to fail.
  1. Get some support: Getting help is one of the best things you can do. It’s not a sign of weakness but of strength. Having someone to talk to and lean on can make all the difference in the world.

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The Role of counselling and self care

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When you are dealing with being called perfectionist by others and you find it stressful, consider getting support from a professional. Talking to a counselor is a great way to work through a challenging situation, and help you find some strategies to work through the person’s behaviour.

Better Help is a great resource where you can talk to a counselor from the comfort of your own home. 

Taking care of your own needs isn’t selfish, and you will feel better in the long run.


A perfectionist knows how to get the job done

More you might like

Steve Jobs was the world’s most popular perfectionist

Famous people known to be perfectionists at work

When it comes to their craft, there are a lot of famous people who have earned the reputation of being perfectionists. The following are some examples:

  1. Steve Jobs: He was seriously involved in every single thing related to the design and development of their products. Jobs didn’t settle for anything less than excellence. And he was always pushing his team to go above and beyond.
  1. Serena Williams: This woman has a lot of focus and drive to be the best at what she does. She is always going as far as she can and never accepting anything less than perfection. 
  1. Kobe Bryant: We all remember him for his insane work ethic and his unwavering pursuit of perfection. He didn’t just talk the talk; he walked the walk. This guy was the real deal.
  1. Beyoncé: When it comes to making the best music, Beyoncé doesn’t leave anything out. She’s a real force in the music business, and the way she works hard at what she does is nothing short of inspiring.
  1. Martha Stewart: This woman strives for perfection in everything she does and pays close attention to every detail. Martha is great at everything she does, whether it’s cooking, decorating, or getting things in order. She knows how to be committed, and it’s paying off in a big way.

Perfectionism is a trait that can be good because it can push you to do great things and be very successful. But here’s the deal: you have to handle it right. If you don’t, you’ll drown in a sea of stress and worry and no one wants that, believe me.

Steve Jobs is a perfectionist
Photo by Matthew Yohe, Wikipedia Commons

Steve Jobs was driven by perfection to create the perfect product. He brought the world the technology we just can’t live without. Image making your commute without being able to listen to your favorite podcast.

Steve only accepted perfection from himself and his employees, anything less was unacceptable. While he may be remembered as the world’s greatest innovator, what we can also learn from Steve Jobs is how to take a perceived weakness and turn it into your greatest strength.

Got any comments, questions or tips for dealing with an obnoxious person? Share them in the comments below.

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One Comment

  1. “Don’t come after me just ’cause I’m precise and like to make things better instead of settling for sloppy garbage.”

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