A BIG Advice for Perfectionists [Before It’s Too Late!]

By A. Yanina Gomez, PhD

Could you imagine Madam Lisa del Giocondo (Gherardini) suing famous artist Leonardo da Vinci for not painting a perfect smile on her portrait? We all know that Lisa’s smile on the painting is not necessarily “perfect.” Even da Vinci couldn’t paint a perfect smile! Yet, his painting, Mona Lisa, is one of the most famous portraits in the world!

The more I coach driven women, the more I notice they tend to put A LOT of pressure on themselves. They believe that things have to be perfect to feel meaningful, accomplished and successful.

“I’ve got to wait for the perfect moment before I can move up the corporate ladder.”

“I won’t consider myself a good mom until I have a perfect family.”

“There no time to fix mistakes! Everything must be PERFECT!”

But, why do we put so much pressure on ourselves wanting to be PERFECT? What happens when we fall short on our quest for perfection?

Some may say…

“I’ll be satisfied with my life when things start going perfect!”

“I’ll be happy when I find my true love.”

“I won’t feel complete until I get that position.”

Frankly, as long as we are human beings, we will never reach full perfection. And, seeing perfection as your identity is a very dangerous choice. 

As we only seek for the ultimate perfection, we face stress, anxiety, frustrations and disappointments simply because we are unable to control all circumstances or events that happen in our lives. And often times, waiting for the perfect opportunity, position, product, look, feeling or time to launch your website may end up being too late! The truth is that, by default, we have the tendency to make mistakes (I’m including myself here!).

Instead of adding more tension to your life and extra dosages of frustrations, may I suggest switching your focus from reaching perfection to reaching excellence?

Excellence is reachable, perfection is not always a possibility. By no means I am underestimating your ability or potential. There are situations and circumstances that end up perfectly.

“I was in the right place at the right time.“

Fair enough! But, these circumstances are not the norm. And your attempt to reach for the ultimate perfection simply adds unnecessary stress and anxiety to your life. Why not focusing on becoming an excellent person, mother, professional, friend, significant other, etc.? This mindset has the potential to remove mediocrity while adding focus and meaning to your life.


Intentionally look for opportunities to grow and develop personally and professionally. Use your gift to make a difference in the life of others. Don’t stay behind, be ahead of the game!

What emotions or thoughts come to mind when you push yourself toward excellence versus pushing yourself toward perfection? Share below!

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