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10 Things That Are So True To All Perfectionists

10 Things That Are So True To All Perfectionists

Most people think that perfectionists have life figured out: They set high standards, they work hard, and they reap the rewards. However, perfectionists know that life with strict, self-imposed goals is far from easy. Still, no matter how many times we hear that perfection is unattainable, we will never stop chasing excellence — even if that means we have to endure a lifetime of the following issues too familiar to perfectionists.

1. We Are Not the Same as Overachievers

Perfectionists and overachievers share a lot of the same symptoms, but they truly aren’t the same neurosis. Both groups set similarly high goals, but overachievers generally are satisfied with any degree of success, while perfectionists must attain perfection, or we experience the regret, guilt, and unending stress of failure. As a result, we often procrastinate, trying to delay inevitable disappointment even as we are pushed forward due to fear of inaction.

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2. We Won’t Be Caught Dead in Asymmetrical Clothing

One-sleeves, one-slits, high-low skirts, and other lopsided fashion trends aren’t daring — they are dreadful. Designers should know by now that symmetry is the essence of beauty. Striving to be asymmetrical is like trying to be ugly, and we perfectionists simply cannot stand being less than flawless.

3. We Can’t Watch Movies Without Pointing Out Errors

Just try to take one of us to the movie theater, and you’ll be thrown out 30 minutes later for all the talking we do. Even though directors tend to be perfectionists themselves, most movies contain a heaping handful of continuity mistakes and other issues that always make us cringe. Movies shot on-location tend to be worst of all because weather issues can cause obvious delays and differences, and sometimes location landmarks in the wrong city can be totally visible. Still, we’ll go to the movies as long as you don’t mind us gasping and pointing — and if you buy us popcorn with precisely distributed butter topping.

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4. We Always Arrive Precisely When We Mean To

We might drag our feet when we have projects to turn in, but if an invitation says 9 p.m., you can expect us to be there at 8:30 at the latest. Perfectionists do not know the meaning of “fashionably late,” and to us, “on time” is definitely “absurdly early” to other people. As an aside, if ever you have the fortune of being invited to a perfectionist’s party — a rare occurrence, considering the energy and expense of excellent extravaganzas — your host will be affronted if you appear any later than she would.

5. We Have to Apologize for Saying We’re Sorry

Because we are plagued by guilt and feelings of inadequacy, perfectionists have a bad habit of apologizing for anything and everything. Even worse, we usually don’t feel that our apologies are perfect, so we have to apologize for that, too. It’s a never-ending cycle, and we’re sorry about it.

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6. We Will Always Miss Being in School

Whenever someone says they hated school, we whimper. School is a perfectionist’s playground, with all sorts of authority figures just waiting to provide praise. The structure of school makes sense to perfectionists: Work hard, get rewarded. Unfortunately, success in the real world is not as obvious or easy to achieve.

7. We Don’t Take Teasing Lightly

Criticism is hard for perfectionists to take, even when it is well-intentioned. Most perfectionists see negative reviews as personal attacks, and instead of rising to the challenge, we get beaten down and depressed. Thus, when friends or allies tease us or make fun in any way, we have a hard time reacting properly to the joke. Instead of witty repartee, we perfectionists prefer artful puns, which usually do not send us into self-loathing.

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8. We Hate Opening Up

Perfectionists hate flaws — especially their own. We have a hard time being vulnerable because it forces us to expose our flaws to other people. Many of our closest loved ones might assume they know us, but usually, we have only shown them our strongest face, revealing nothing of the insecurities below.

9. We Don’t See Our Own Success

Despite perfectionists’ appearance of control and confidence, we are usually absolutely crippled by uncertainty and self-doubt. Though you may think we found success, our low self-esteem tells us that what we have now will never be enough.

10. We Need You to Stick Around

For all of these reasons and more, perfectionists need loved ones in our lives to tell us when we are being crazy. When we screech at your unbalanced outfits, when we squeal in the middle of movies, and when we cry for days after coming in second place, we need you by our sides for comfort and support.

Featured photo credit: VIKTOR HANACEK via picjumbo.com

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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