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What is Perfectionism?

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Definition: Perfectionism is a personality trait that sometimes coincides with social anxiety disorder (SAD). Perfectionists are not happy unless things are done perfectly and have very high standards for either themselves, others, or both. People who suffer with SAD sometimes have overly high expectations for themselves in social and performance situations and these contribute to feelings of low self-esteem and inadequacy.

Often perfectionists will procrastinate or avoid activities that they feel they cannot complete to the standard that they expect of themselves. In the context of social anxiety disorder, this can mean avoiding social or performance situations where success is not ensured. Perfectionistic individuals with SAD are also more likely to engage in post mortem analysis after an event, meaning that they pick apart what happened and only remember negative details about the situation. Post mortem analysis further contributes to feelings of social anxiety in those with perfectionistic tendencies.

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