How Perfectionism Destroys Your Productivity

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If you’re a perfectionist, you’re probably a “doer.” But here’s the thing — doing is not the same as achieving.

When it comes to productivity, being a doer doesn’t mean you’re actually being productive at all. In fact, it means quite the opposite.

You may have a hard time letting go of tasks, you might think that the more you work on something, the better it will become.

But while this can be true in some situations, over-perfecting is actually hindering your productivity.

Perfectionism is a trait common to many entrepreneurs and business owners, and we’re often our own toughest critics.

But it can be counterproductive if you let it get in the way of productivity and innovation.

Here are a few reasons on how perfectionism destroys your productivity.

1) Perfect Is Subjective

Aiming to do your best job is always a good thing, but if it hinders you from completing your tasks, it may be a problem.

Perfectionism ties closely to fear as you are afraid your work is not up to standards but remember that perfect is subjective.

You may think that your work is “perfect” while others find that it’s not.

This can affect you emotionally due to the expectations of your own work which leads to poor performance in the future.

You can take a look at this article which talks about the fear of getting started on your side hustle which can also be linked to perfectionism.

2) Procrastinating Or Perfectionism?

Are you aiming to be perfect or are you really just procrastinating?

Procrastination is the shadow of perfectionism. Things can’t get done if you dwell too long.

Take a look at this article if you find yourself procrastinating instead of moving forward and being productive.

Now that we understand the difference between a procrastinator and a perfectionist, we should aim to do our work the best we can while not dwelling too long and not moving forward.

3) Using Your Time Unintentionally

Diving in deeper on how aiming to be perfect leads to procrastination which affects your productivity, we can look at how we use our time.

The longer you take to complete your tasks thinking you want to do it better leads to you wasting your time unintentionally.

Imagine working on a project or writing an article, you start to do your research and find ways to improve your work, you’ll start to find yourself falling into the “infinity pool” of distractions.

The “infinity pool” is a concept from the book “Make Time” which I wrote about in the previous article.

It teaches us how to use our time intentionally and avoid distractions such as social media.

With the endless distractions on the internet, you may lose yourself in the realm of Instagram or Youtube while you do your work.

The longer you take to complete your work thinking that you want to make it “perfect” will slowly turn into procrastination as these distractions take over and it’s not even your fault.

The difference between procrastination and using your time unintentionally is, you can consciously know that you are procrastinating while unintentional time wastage can be of instinct, which makes it scarily unproductive.


These are some of the reasons how perfectionism destroys your productivity.

By taking the first step in understanding and acknowledging these reasons when they creep up, it will help you to stay productive instead of using “perfectionism” as an excuse.

So are you a perfectionist? Or really just a procrastinator?

I hope this helps you to understand that it’s better to make mistakes than to aim for perfection.

At the end of the day, it’s more important to learn from your mistakes and improve along the way while putting the fear of not doing your best aside.

Here’s a good quote from the book “Make Time”

You only waste time if you’re not intentional about how you spend it

That’s all for today, thank you for reading and I hope you understand how perfectionism destroys your productivity now!

See you in the next one!