Episode 354- Overcoming Perfectionism with Dr. David Purves

354- Overcoming Perfectionism with Dr. David Purves

Overcoming Perfectionism with Dr. David Purves


One way Bridechillas can have a great wedding experience is by first overcoming perfectionism. Planning a wedding involves so many factors. There are family and friends to consider, vendors to deal with, and so many other plans, all while preparing to start a new life with your partner. With so many variables, there are bound to be things that don’t go as planned. Perfectionism is an enemy to be defeated in wedding planning and in life. On this episode of the Bridechilla podcast, guest Dr. David Purves share tools and takeaways to overcome and avoid perfectionism. 

Listen to the episode

The Perils of Perfectionism

Dr. Purves says that perfectionism creates a false dichotomy. Perfectionists believe that the opposite of perfection is failure. Leaving no gray area causes problems in wedding planning and in everyday life. It can damage relationships, hinder productivity at work, and ultimately lead to depression. During this episode, Dr. David Purves describes the behaviors of perfectionists, discusses contriubtors that lead to perfectionistic tendencies, and offers practices for overcoming perfectionism. 

“By retaining power and control, you can have more of the wedding you want.”

Photo by Leon Biss

Don’t Give Away Your Power and Control

Perfectionists almost always have a need to be in control. While planning a wedding, a perfectionist desires to control how vendors operate, how family members behave and every other aspect of the wedding. However, there are external factors that no one can control. Dr. David Purves says that you have all the power and control you need, but quite often you are giving it away to things that are irrelevant. Listen to the relationship between perfectionism and the need for control and the damage it can cause during this interview.

“Perfectionism is like a program running in the background causing things to happen.”

Methods to Overcoming Perfectionism

If you have identified yourself or your partner as a perfectionist, don’t worry, there is help. You can overcome perfectionism and regain balance in your life. As a psychologist, Dr. Purves has years of valuable experience and insight for how to stop expecting perfection and find more peace and joy in life. While it takes self-evaluation, work and accountability, change is possible. During this episode, Dr. Purves shares his wisdom and gives practical steps to help you move toward balance.  

Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Being a perfectionist leads to the need for control. It also leads to worry and anxiety. Dr. Purves explains that worry is always based on events in the future. It is impossible to control the future. Rather than spend time worrying about the future, he suggests establishing what is true and practicing remembering it. Stay focused on the present and let the future take care of itself. Implementing the tips and practices given by Dr. Purves in this podcast episode will help you take the first step in overcoming perfectionism. It will also help you have a better wedding experience and a happier life.

Show Highlights

  • [0:25] Introduction of this episodes guest, Dr. David Purves
  • [1:12] How perfectionism creates the unnecessary pressure of avoiding failure
  • [4:40] The issue of control and how it relates to perfectionists
  • [8:27] To avoid the pressure for perfection while planning your wedding, stary by asking “what is controlling you.”
  • [11:09] What internal and external factors contribute to perfectionism in wedding planning
  • [13:40] How can you diagnose perfectionism before it gets out of hand?
  • [22:24] Methods of being more mindful and calm in dealing with the lead up to your wedding
  • [29:43} The importance of positive self-talk
  • [31:44} Dr. Purves explains the secret of maintaining all of the power and control
  • [36:21] Tips for how to deal with worry and anxiety during the final days of preparation before the wedding

Memorable Quotes

  • “You can’t be a perfectionist unless you are a control freak”
  • “Perfectionism is like a program running in the background causing things to happen.”
  • “You have all the power and control you need to achieve anything you want in your life.”
  • “It’s not acceptable to be negative. We don’t want to be particularly positive, we just want to be accurate.”

Show image by Şahin Yeşilyaprak

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