The Life Of A Perfectionist

Being a perfectionist is no joke; it's almost like a second job... or a third in my case.

When it comes to classes and completing assignments, I want everything to be perfect. I spend hours and hours on one assignment that should take two hours at most. It tends to be a problem when I procrastinate (which I don't often do) and have to complete an assignment at the last minute, or if I have multiple assignments due at the same time.

During finals week, I had to write a 10-12-page paper, due on Monday. We knew about this assignment from the beginning of the semester. My professor reminded us about the paper often; telling us to start looking into it. Guess when I started writing it? Sunday…

Over the semester, I looked at the requirements for the paper a few times but I never seemed to have the time to actually start it. Looking back, I probably could've started it at some point, but I didn't use my time as wisely as I should've. I didn't even have a set topic until the week before it was due.

On Saturday, I started the research so I could write it on Sunday and Monday before I had to turn it in at the end of class that day. Since this was the first long research paper I had to write while being in college, I forgot how extensive research can be. Even though I had four or five sources, I didn't feel like I had enough information to thoroughly finish the paper, so I kept searching until I did. By the end of Sunday night, I had a solid section and a half out of six completed. Thriving, right?

Wrong. That meant that after work on Monday, I had roughly five hours to finish this paper before it needed to be turned in. I don't think I've ever been as productive as I was in those five hours. I was non-stop grinding. I finished the paper ten minutes before class started. Even though it wasn't the best paper in the world, it was done. Relief flooded through me.

Between Saturday and Sunday night (more like morning), I got a total of four hours of sleep. It was disgusting. I could barely function at work Sunday and Monday since I had to be there at the crack of dawn. The fact that I had to work both days helps to explain why it took me so long to write the paper. Sleep deprivation is not fun.

The only reason it takes me so long to complete assignments is that I'm constantly going back and forth about how to word sentences and present various ideas. Even after changing things for the millionth time, I never feel like it's exactly right. The struggle is too real.

In a sense, being a perfectionist is a good thing because I overthink my assignments and usually end up with a good grade. On the other hand, I'm always stressed out and never feel like I do well enough. It's a give-and-take process but there's not a lot of giving.

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