I've written previously about pushing yourself further, that we're able to do more than we're doing.
In the wrong hands, this theory becomes rigid. You could always do more, so what you're doing right now is not good enough.
The New York Times had a great article on this very subject: "Unhappy? Self-Critical? Maybe You're Just a Perfectionist" by Benedict Carey.
To those of us, like myself, who are happily co-existing in this category, perfectionism doesn't have a stigma. Our culture is such that the strive for excellence is supported, demanded and continually just out of reach.
I found the three types of perfectionists this article outlines a game to see where my traits fit:
"Self-oriented strivers who struggle to live up to their high standards...
Outwardly focused zealots who expect perfection from others...
And those desperate to live up to an ideal they’re convinced others expect of them."
Eek, do I really hold it against my friends if they don't send me holiday cards? Chalk it up to #2.
For my coaching business, I recently wrote about Savoring, enjoying what you've accomplished. Several readers responded with their difficulties around this area. I know the feeling—there is always more that can be done.
And it's a slippery slope. Doing more without stopping to acknowledge what you've done creates a tough loop that might never be conquered. I like the suggestion from this article about challenging yourself to do your worst, to leave something undone. To not care if you don't get holidays cards from everyone you send them to....or to (gasp) not even notice.
I have my assignment.