Sharon Martin on Perfectionism and Anxiety

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How to Recover from Perfectionism and Find Balance

If you’re feeling overwhelmed and under pressure, maybe you’re trying too hard to be perfect. Always focusing on others can add to your anxiety. In this episode of Woman Worriers, host Elizabeth Cush and her guest, Sharon Martin, LCSW, talk about how perfectionism can fuel anxiety—and what to do about it.

There isn’t a ‘right’ way to go about making changes of thinking about things differently or understanding yourself.
— Sharon Martin

Show Notes:

Pressure to perform perfectly can come from many places—society, the people around us and, very often, from inside ourselves. Perfectionism can add to our anxiety and stress. It can keep us from trying new things for fear of failure. In this episode of the Woman Worriers podcast, host Elizabeth Cush, of Progression Counseling in Annapolis, Md., talks with Sharon Martin, a San Francisco Bay-area counselor and author of the Happily Imperfect blog and The CBT Workbook for Perfectionism. They share insights into how perfectionism holds us back and offer strategies to help you overcome perfectionist behaviors and bring your life into balance.

Listen and learn:

  • How society contributes to perfectionism, especially in today’s teens

  • How all-or-nothing thinking drives perfectionism

  • Why perfectionism can be difficult to recognize

  • How perfectionism shows up in behavior and thinking

  • How perfectionism colors our perceptions

  • How the seeds of perfectionism are planted

  • How perfectionism affects men and women differently

  • How perfectionism shatters our self-esteem

  • Why recovering from perfectionism can be challenging for perfectionists

  • Why perfectionism is so exhausting

  • How cognitive behavior therapy techniques can help perfectionists

  • The power of authentic conversations about struggle

  • Why perfectionists need self-compassion

  • Perfectionism isn’t all bad—it’s a matter of balance

  • How to look for “partial success” and why it’s important

Learn More:

> Sharon Martin’s website

> The CBT Workbook for Perfectionism: Evidence-Based Skills to Help You Let Go Of Self-Criticism, Build Self-Esteem, and Find Balance by Sharon Martin, MSW, LCSW

> Happily Imperfect blog

> Progression Counseling


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