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When Perfect Isn't Good Enough: Strategies for Coping with Perfectionism Paperback – February 1, 2009
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It's only natural to want to avoid making mistakes, but imperfection is a part of being human. And while perfectionists are often praised for their abilities, being constantly anxious about details can hold you back and keep you from reaching your full potential.
In this fully revised and updated second edition of When Perfect Isn't Good Enough, you'll discover the root cause of your perfectionism, explore the impact of perfectionism on your life, and find new, proven-effective coping skills to help you overcome your anxiety about making mistakes. This guide also includes tips for dealing with other perfectionists and discussions about how perfectionism is linked to worry, depression, anger, social anxiety, and body image. As you complete the exercises in this book, you'll find it easier and easier to keep worries at bay and enjoy life — imperfections and all.
This book has been awarded The Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies Self-Help Seal of Merit — an award bestowed on outstanding self-help books that are consistent with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) principles and that incorporate scientifically tested strategies for overcoming mental health difficulties. Used alone or in conjunction with therapy, our books offer powerful tools readers can use to jump-start changes in their lives.
"An excellent description of perfectionism and its self-sabotaging disadvantages. Presents many efficient and effective cognitive-behavioral methods for dealing with and minimizing this affliction. Quite practical and thorough—but nicely flexible and unperfectionistic!"
—Albert Ellis, Ph.D., president of the Albert Ellis Institute in New York City and author of A Guide to Rational Living
"All of us know someone who is a perfectionist and most of us have joked about it at one time or another. For some it can be a useful trait that ensures some organization in a disorganized world. But for those individuals coping with too much perfectionism, it can be a curse that takes the pleasure out of life and in some cases can lead to severe anxiety disorders. Now two leading mental health practitioners and clinical scientists provide up-to-date, scientifically validated skills for overcoming perfectionism and regaining control of one's life. This long overdue book should relieve much suffering and enhance functioning for the millions of individuals dealing with excessive perfectionism."
—David H. Barlow, Ph.D., professor of psychology and director of the Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders at Boston University
"When Perfect Isn't Good Enough surpasses any of the other books on perfectionism in quality and scope. Antony and Swinson have synthesized what we know about perfectionism and used it to create the first well-integrated approach to reduce the suffering caused by it. The chapters clearly define perfectionism and provide concrete steps to master this demon. Final chapters focus on how perfectionism can manifest itself in other disorders, demonstrating how pernicious this phenomenon can be—and why such a book is so essential. This book will be invaluable to people suffering from perfectionism and to the therapists trying to help them."
—Randy O. Frost, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Smith College in Northampton, MA
"When Perfect Isn't Good Enough is an excellent source for people looking to adjust their standards and expectations and, by so doing, increase the joy in their lives. It is easy to read, filled with solid advice, and based on the best scientific research. Unlike most other self-help books, the many exercises suggested by the authors provide the reader with the tools to put these words into action. Antony and Swinson have produced a thorough and systemic manual to lead the perfectionist out of the misery of depression, anger, worry, and social anxiety, and into the promised land of realistic self-evaluation, self-esteem, and positive interpersonal relations. Bravo!"
—Richard Heimberg, Ph.D., Adult Anxiety Clinic in the department of psychology at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA
From the Publisher
- Publisher : New Harbinger Publications; Second edition (February 1, 2009)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 304 pages
- ISBN-10 : 157224559X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1572245594
- Item Weight : 14.7 ounces
- Dimensions : 5 x 1 x 9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #136,947 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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The perfectionism that affects my family is more of a "self-oriented perfectionism" as described on page 11: having self-imposed standards that are unrealistically high and impossible to attain. This leads my son into a severe writers' block that paralyzes him when he is asked to write an essay. The authors distinguish three types of perfectionism: Self-oriented, other-oriented (expecting perfection from others), and socially prescribed perfectionism. But they then ignore the distinction and treat them all about the same. I did not find this book to be useful.
Top reviews from other countries
It has helped me to have an insight into my personality and show me where being a perfectionist can be helpful but also the areas that it creates emotional distress and what you can do about it. I am still on my journey of recovery (being a perfectionist has lead me to suffer from depression) but this book has helped my understanding of me, where it comes from, why I do it and ways to help you through difficult situations and going forward.