Perfectionism gets its name from the Greek word for “without fault.” Perfectionism has been described as “highly demanding, excessive striving for excellence or absolute perfection. ” Perfectionism is an effort to control how you think, feel, and behave to create a positive image that is consistent with who you think you should be. Many people think that perfectionism is a good thing because it leads to excellent performance. But the truth is, it can be dangerous because it leads to high expectations and can make a person feel they are never good enough. For that reason, we have prepared the best quotes about perfectionism.

Arrow On Dartboard Shows Perfect Shot Or Precision

Perfectionism is a broad term that can describe some qualities, traits, and behaviors. For example, some individuals may experience perfectionism as a need to make everything around them perfect. Others may experience it as an intense fear of failing or appearing inferior to others. In this case, perfectionism is characterized by an overwhelming need to be perfect (e.g., to be “always right”). In other instances of perfectionism, a person may experience an expectation that everything around them will be perfect.

The Best Quotes About Perfectionism

“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.”

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Airman’s Odyssey

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was a French writer and pioneering aviator. He first achieved fame as an author with Le Petit Prince’s first book.

“Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.”

Salvador Dali

Salvador Dali was a Spanish surrealist and the recognized master of the bizarre, famous for drawing dream-like paintings and sculpting objects like clocks melting in water. Dali is also famous as one of the twentieth century’s greatest artists. Dali began painting at an early age; by his teenage years, he had mastered many of the technical skills of painting, and in 1928 at age 17, he joined the Surrealist movement in Paris. He created some of the most well-known images in art history by exploring Freudian theory through his dream imagery.

“If you look for perfection, you’ll never be content.”

Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy is famously known as the author of one of the greatest novels, Anna Karenina. It was first published in 1877 in serial form, which he engrossed readers. In late 19th century Russia, the story takes place during an upper-class social scene where gossip and scandal were almost as common as they are now, mainly surrounding love affairs and relationships (Gould). The novel follows the tragic love story between high-class Anna Karenina and dashing Count Vronsky. They begin their illicit affair against societal rules and judgmental criticism from others around them (Walker 1277). However, Tolstoy didn’t spend all of his time writing novels; during the latter part of his life, he lived in self-imposed exile (Booth 159). His main reason was to avoid serving in the Russian Army, which he felt strongly against after witnessing firsthand the carnage of war surrounding Sebastopol (Tolstoy). Tolstoy was influenced largely by the work of James Morison when it came to religious themes. Still, when it came to art and literature, he preferred symbolic works rather than realistic depictions. Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina has influenced many people through their retellings of this classic tragic love story. One example is a modern adaptation called Vronsky’s Sisters, which follows two sisters trying to cope with the love triangle between Anna, Vronsky, and Karenin (Rosenman).

“Don’t strive for perfection in order to avoid failure and criticism, because the pursuit of perfection is a guaranteed path to failure and criticism.”

Zig Ziglar

Zig Ziglar was an American author, salesman, and motivational speaker. Ziglar wrote more than 30 books during his lifetime, including See You at the Top, Over the Top, and Raising Positive Kids in a Negative World. His popular works were read by millions of people worldwide, and he is considered one of today’s leading authorities on motivation, salesmanship, and overcoming adversity. Zig Ziglar died at 86 years old after battling respiratory problems in 2007. He passed away on November 28, 2012, at a hospital in Alabama. The business community and politicians, and notable individuals mourned his death, including Beverly Haley, who co-founded ‘American Specialty Cars,’ Harold Ginter, who worked for many years as director of marketing at Holiday Inn, and author Tom Ziglar.

“Perfectionism isn’t about striving for excellence or healthy achievement. It’s an excuse for never having to say you’re sorry, for never being wrong, for rarely taking risks. It’s insecurity masquerading as virtue.”

Jessica Hagy

Jessica Hagy is a self-taught writer, editor, and cartoonist living in New York. She has written one novel, The Index Card, which was published in nine languages and optioned for film by Warner Bros. Her new book, How to Be Interesting: (In 10 Simple Steps), will be published on September 14, 2016, by Portfolio/ Penguin.

Hagy’s work appears regularly in print and online at, the Wall Street Journal, Quartz at Work, Fast Company, TED Blog, and elsewhere. Her writing style—which pivots between witty observation and profound insight—has inspired many imitators but no equals; she is widely considered “the original sparkly unicorn” of the visual blog form known as infographic journalism.

Hagy is the founder of Indexed, a website of visual essays (and infographics) about culture and ideas; she also served as editorial director at Big Think, an online information service that engages public figures in short-form conversations with the general public. Hagy appeared on BBC Radio 4, BBC New York, BBC Berkshire, WNYC’s Leonard Lopate Show, WBUR (Boston), NPR’s Talk of the Nation, Slate’s Lexicon Valley podcast, CBC’s Unreserved with Rosanna Deerchild, BBC World Service Outlook with Simon Sebag Montefiore and CBS This Morning.

“Perfection is a disease of the computer age. If something isn’t perfect, many think, it’s a failure. But perfection is a myth and striving for it means you’ll never be happy with your work or yourself. It’s crippling and obsessive and, ultimately self-defeating because it doesn’t allow you to enjoy your achievements.”

Danny Wallace

Danny Wallace is a writer, campaigner, and presenter. Wallace has written over 20 books ranging from children’s stories to New York Times bestsellers. Yes Man’s 2007 book was turned into a film starring Jim Carrey and Zooey Deschanel. In 2015 he wrote the novel adventure comedy Join Me, which spent ten weeks on The Sunday Times Bestsellers list. In 2012 Danny launched his own publishing company, Ambush Books, with his long-time collaborator Rob Usden. In 2014 he became an Ambassador for Samaritans after writing about their work experience in a column for The Independent newspaper. He currently presents a weekly show on LBC radio where he takes calls from listeners about politics and anything else they fancy discussing.

 “The quest for perfection often masks an absence of trust in ourselves that compromises our ability to effectively begin or complete what we set out to do.”

Brené Brown

Brené Brown is a best-selling author, speaker, and researcher. Brown has spent the past decade studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy. Her 2010 TEDxRainier talk on The Power of Vulnerability has been viewed more than 16 million times worldwide. Brené is also the Founder of The Daring Way™, an organization that teaches people worldwide how to build resilience in themselves, their families, and communities.

“Not only is perfection an unreachable goal, but trying for it means you’ll never feel good about yourself.”

Joyce Meyer

Born on June 4, 1943, in St. Louis, Missouri. Joyce Meyer is an American inspirational speaker and founder of Joyce Meyer Ministries, whose mission is to ” Encourage, Challenge & Comfort the Body of Christ.” Meyer has written 100 books that have been translated into numerous languages. Her radio program, Enjoying Everyday Life, is one of America’s top Christian radio programs and can be heard worldwide on nearly 800 stations and webcasts.

“Do it right the first time, you won’t have to do it over.”

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

He was born in 1929, January 15, in Atlanta, Georgia. His parents were Reverend Martin Luther King Sr. and Alberta Williams King. He had an elder sister named Christine King Farris and younger siblings named A booker T. King III, Alfred Daniel Williams King, and James Earl Hardy Jr.. Martin Luther King Jr. was an American civil rights leader and minister who is famous for his role in the advancement of African-Americans. He is the most influential preacher in history remembered in history.

“Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.”

Vince Lombardi Jr.

Vince Lombardi Jr. (born July 15, 1935) was the head coach for the Washington Redskins from 1975-1977 and the Green Bay Packers from 1969-1970. Lombardi also served as general manager of the New York Giants from 1976 through 1978. In addition, Lombardi was an NFL football player for the New York Giants from 1958-1960. Lombardi is a member of both the College Football Hall of Fame and Pro Football Hall of Fame, and also has the distinction of having coached in one of the highest numbers of Super Bowls (5) — 2 with Green Bay and 3 with Washington — won by a head coach.

“Perfectionism is not a quest for the best. It is a pursuit of the worst in ourselves, the part that tells us that nothing we do will ever be good enough – that we should try again.”

Prof. Gordon Flett

Gordon Flett is a Professor of psychology at York University in Toronto, Ontario. A clinical psychologist by training, he has been active in research and service delivery to the community since 1980. Flett published over 100 scholarly articles and book chapters on perfectionism and two books on perfectionism. His research has helped establish perfectionism as a risk factor for human adaptation, with ties to the clinical features of depression, eating disorders, anxiety disorders, and personality disorders. He is an ISI “Highly Cited” author in Clinical Psychology (top 0.5%).

Conclusion About Perfectionism

We all want to be perfect. But perfectionism can lead to high expectations and make someone feel like they are never good enough. The truth is, it’s not healthy for anyone when you strive for impossible standards that no one could realistically achieve. It’s important to remember that imperfections are what make us human! Contact our team of experts today if any of these symptoms sound familiar (or if you just need a little guidance), so we can get started on helping you change how things work at home or work! If you’re struggling with perfectionism in your personal life or business, we’d love the opportunity to help you find relief from this destructive force in your life.

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