Therapy for Perfectionists

A quest to be flawless.

You are your own worst critic. No matter how hard you try or how much you achieve, you still hear the inner message of “not good enough.”

In your desire to be agreeable, you’ve overextended yourself, doing everything for everyone. You’re exhausted emotionally and physically.

You have high standards…for yourself and others. You often feel paralyzed and unable to make a decision. When you start a project, it is hard to complete it because you just know you won’t do it perfectly.

All this keeps stress and anxiety high and you feel unworthiness creeping in.

It’s so hard to understand. You are highly motivated, gifted even, and yet you feel so burdened, unhappy, and drained.

In the beginning it felt like a strength, a superpower of sorts. You can be so diligent, detail-oriented, goal-driven and focused. And it was a sure-fire way to avoid criticism, earn praise, and accomplish goals.

Eventually, you hit a point of diminishing returns, and now you no longer feel so powerful. In fact, you feel worse, not better.

Tired dress-up woman in chair. This represents how perfectionism may cause stress, anxiety, fatigue, and depression. I am a counselor who provides therapy for perfectionists in Houston, TX 77006.

You may be wondering, "Am I a Perfectionist?"

The Mirriam-Webster Dictionary defines perfectionism as “a disposition to regard anything short of perfection as unacceptable.” With this belief, you are likely to view many of your efforts as unacceptable.  Over time, you might even start to view yourself as unacceptable, or not good enough. So, in your life perfectionism shows up as the drive to achieve more, be more, and prove your worth.

As a therapist, I’ve been supporting clients with perfectionism for years. In counseling sessions, I use effective, evidence-based counseling strategies. Through our work together, you will improve your ability to tolerate stress and the fear of making mistakes or being judged. Furthermore, you'll learn to recognize your perfectionist tendencies. Therefore, you'll be able to set personal and professional expectations that are authentic, realistic, and self-affirming. Over time, you'll find relief from your symptoms and stressors. In our counseling sessions, I will help you find the root cause of your perfectionism. You'll start to find healing. Consequently, you'll live a more empowered, free, and fulfilling life.

Woman hiding behind a mask. This represents how women with perfectionism often feel fear and anxiety about being accepted and valued as themself. I am a counselor in Houston TX 77006 who provides therapy for perfectionists to help them with anxiety, stress management, and shame. Understanding Perfectionism

While perfectionism affects each person in different ways, there are several core features of perfectionism:

  1. Unrealistically high standards for self or others. People with perrfectionism do not tolerate mistakes. Perfectionists view mistakes as evidence of failure or weakness. Therefore, they are hard on themselves and others.
  2. A belief that worth is defined by one’s performance and achievement. For perfectionists, mistakes damage their self-esteem and identity.
  3. Underlying fear and anxiety about being accepted and valued. Perfectionists fear that mistakes will bring criticism, judgment, disapproval, or disappointment. For a perfectionist, these feel intolerable.

How Perfectionism Expresses Itself:

  • Excessive stress
  • Self/Other Criticism
  • Procrastination
  • Comparison
  • Indecisiveness
  • Poor work-life balance
  • Need for control
  • Self-sabotage
  • Disconnection
  • Low self-esteem
  • Shame
  • Missed Opportunities
  • People-pleasing
  • Self-doubt
  • Distrust

The Risks of Perfectionism

Many believe striving for perfection is a positive character trait. However, perfectionism can hurt your ability to be present and enjoy life. In addition, perfectionism also harms your health, relationships, and goals. Over time, the persistent desire to perform better and feel better eventually leads to feeling disconnected and frustrated.  Also, perfectionism lowers your sense of self-worth and confidence.

Perfectionism is not a harmless habit. For some, extreme perfectionistic beliefs can lead to serious and life-threatening conditions such as eating disorders, obsessive compulsive disorders (OCD), depression, or anxiety. These conditions can also trigger perfectionism, so therapy for these issues may also address perfectionism.

Healing Perfectionism

Nobody is perfect sign. This represents how therapy for perfectionists can help women lower their fear, anxiety and stress during therapy for perfectionism. I am a counselor in Houston, TX 77006

Initially, it can be scary thinking about a life without perfectionism. Accepting imperfect action, lowering your standards or giving yourself a break might feel like failure or like embracing mediocrity.

The good news is that you already possess many of the traits necessary to overcome perfectionism. You simply have to learn to use them to your advantage rather than against yourself. Imagine learning to strive for excellence rather than  beating yourself up to be perfect. There really is a difference. Perfectionism is externally motivated. With perfectionism, you work in order to achieve approval, rewards, or status. You do not want to receive criticism and judgement. However, striving for excellence is internally motivated and based on your own values and desires. When you strive for excellence you have long-term satisfaction, confidence, and fulfillment. You don't suffer as much from the physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion of perfectionism.

You can learn to catch and work with your perfectionism. In counseling sessions, I can help you examine and heal harsh thoughts around expectations, success, failure, inadequacy, fear, and shame. This will help you tame perfectionist behaviors like overworking, procrastinating, and criticizing.

Mistakes and failures can be a doorway into growth and opportunity. Let me help you accept and even love your flaws and limitations to live a life without guilt, shame, and people-pleasing.

In therapy, we create space to understand your true values and desires so you can connect with others authentically without people-pleasing. In addition, you work to build a compassionate relationship with yourself that is not based on rewards and achievements as proof of your worth.

And reclaim your life!

Whole-Person Approach to Therapy for Perfectionists.

I take a functional, holistic, and integrative approach to therapy for perfectionists. This means I see the mind, body, and spirit as being connected to physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellness and by default, dis-ease. Therefore, I support clients through individual therapy, nutritional and lifestyle counseling when appropriate, and mindfulness-based strategies that develop psychological insights and self-compassion.

My style is intuitive and integrative. I offer a safe, confidential, and nonjudgmental space. All of you is welcome.

Though stepping inside yourself can feel uncertain, it is the path to whole and authentic living. You can live the life you want. You can discover your strengths, trust your emotions, find your voice, and create the life you desire.

I provide in-person counseling for perfectionism near the Heights and Montrose neighborhoods in Houston. I also offer online therapy for perfectionism through secure videoconferencing.

Happy African American woman in yellow shirt drinking coffee in her office. This represents how therapy for perfectionists can help women with perfectionism accept themselves and heal from stress, anxiety, depression, shame, and fear. I am a counselor in Houston TX 77006Begin counseling for perfectionism in Houston, Texas

If you are ready to find relief from the symptoms of perfectionism and feel whole again, I can help. I am here for you. Counseling can help you rediscover a sense of hope, connection, meaning, and purpose in your life.

  1. Contact me to schedule a free consultation phone call,
  2. Meet with me at my Houston, TX office if you are able, or we can meet over videoconferencing,
  3. Find emotional peace and holistic healing.

Other Services offered by Natalie Mica LPC

My Houston, Texas counseling clinic provides a variety of holistic psychological and wellness services to help you find your inner strength and resiliency. I see patients of all ages and provide individual therapy for adults, child therapy, therapy for teens, and family counseling. To help you meet your mental health goals, I specialize in treating anxiety, depression, eating disorders and body image issuesgrief and losschallenging life transitions, trauma, physical illness counseling, integrative health coaching, therapy for self-esteem and personal empowerment, shame, stress, and women’s issues. Contact my office to learn more about the ways I can help you find your inner purpose and emotional peace.

 Let’s get started!

1536 Vermont Street
Houston, TX 77006
(281) 344-7558

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