From psychotherapist Katherine Morgan Schafler, an invitation to every “recovering perfectionist” to challenge the way they look at perfectionism, and the way they look at themselves.
We’ve been looking at perfectionism all wrong. As psychotherapist and former on-site therapist at Google Katherine Morgan Schafler argues in The Perfectionist's Guide to Losing Control, you don’t have to stop being a perfectionist to be healthy. For women who are sick of being given the generic advice to “find balance,” a new approach has arrived.
Which of the five types of perfectionist are you? Classic, intense, Parisian, messy, or procrastinator? As you identify your unique perfectionist profile, you'll learn how to manage each form of perfectionism to work for you, not against you. Beyond managing it, you'll learn how to embrace and even enjoy your perfectionism. Yes, enjoy!
Full of stories and brimming with humor, empathy, and depth, this book is a love letter to the ambitious, high achieving, full-of-life clients who filled the author’s private practice, and who changed her life. It’s a clarion call for all women to dare to want more without feeling greedy or ungrateful. Ultimately, this book will show you how to make the single greatest trade you’ll ever make in your life, which is to exchange superficial control for real power.
"What if your perfectionism exists to help you?" asks psychotherapist Schafler in her eye-opening debut. The author suggests that perfectionism is a "strength" to be harnessed and outlines the five types of perfectionist: classic, Parisian, procrastinator, messy, and intense. Parisian perfectionists, she contends, want everyone to like them but are embarrassed about how much they care, while messy perfectionists love to start projects but usually don't finish because they become frustrated that the execution isn't flawless. She posits that the line between the types is porous and that some individuals may display different types based on context: "You can be a messy perfectionist when it comes to dating but a classic perfectionist during the holidays." Contrasting adaptive and maladaptive perfectionism, Schafler urges readers to emulate the former, which recognizes that perfectionism will always be out of reach but finds value in the striving, while the latter believes in the possibility of achieving perfection and feels discouraged by the inevitable failure to do so. Schafler's thoughtful treatment of perfectionism offers a fresh perspective, and the client anecdotes enlighten, as when she describes a "classic" perfectionist who was "so clean and crisp" that it looked "as if she'd purchased all her belongings earlier that morning." The result is an insightful guide on how to sweat the details.