Perfectionism is a condition whereby the individual sets high personal standards, either for themselves and their own behaviour and actions or they set the same expectations for others. They tend to want or expect things to be flawless with the personal drivers of 'Be Perfect' or 'Be Perfect for me'. Research has shown that the behaviours and verbalisation associated with these drivers are predictable which means that something can be done to reduce the distress and negative emotion linked to unhealthy perfectionism.
Dimensions of Perfectionism
Research has shown that perfectionism has two dimensions Perfectionistic striving and Perfectionistic concerns and it is important to understand the differences.
George Box was a British statistician who died in 2013 and wrote about this term in a number of his statistics articles and books in the latter part of the 20th century. However, whilst the phrase was developed during his work in statistics, his premise applies to all domains - a model is just a simplification of the real world to allow complicated or complex systems to be communicated.
"Situational awareness is understanding what is going on around us."
Situational awareness is impacted by many factors such as previous experience (what is relevant to now), our task loading, our goals, our expectations (we often don't see what we aren't expecting to see) and many other factors. While it is easy to see what 'situational awareness' is, it isn't always easy to see how it works or the model's limitations when we use a simple description like this.
Something to consider with any model if it is to be widely used to explain complex problems.
As part of the shuttle astronaut selection process in the late 1970s, candidate astronauts would face a number of assessments to ensure that they could deal with the mental and physical stresses involved in living and operating in high stress, close-proximity working conditions. The psychological assessments were managed by Dr Terry Maguire who was focused on the astronaut's ability to deal with their own and others' emotions and stresses and be able to communicate effectively. Miscommunication was known to lead to ineffective teamwork, and leadership and effective communication is adversely impacted by performance shaping factors such as stress and fatigue.
One of these interviews was a revelation to Dr McGuire and occurred after he had invited Dr. Taibi Kahler to observe a number of assessments. Kahler, a psychologist from Hot Springs, Arkansas, had discovered a process to assess human interactions second by second and determine the productivity of the communication. The...
"5 minutes early is on time. On time is late. Late is unacceptable."
"I don't mind the time issue, it is the broken commitments that I can't stand"
A recent post on Facebook from Forbes.com prompted this short article explaining the need to understand others' perceptions if communication is to be improved. Significant research has shown that miscommunication leads to poor performance, increased error and reduced morale, so why does it still happen?
My response to the Facebook posts was that I too used to get distressed when I was late or others were late for a meeting, but since completing some training and learning more about perceptions and culture, my view has tempered somewhat. I also highlighted that given the two responses above, one time-based and the other value-based, that 65% of the US population may respond differently depending on their value and perception of time, and the action of being late.
It doesn't mean that I don't try to be early, or that I don't get frustrated...
Successful businesses are built with effective communicators - not just top down to ensure the strategy and values are known, or bottom up to ensure low-level concerns are shared to the senior leadership team, but everywhere.
One of the most important times to ensure communications are effective is during any change programme. Primarily because change involves uncertainty which often leads to fear. Change is also hard for leaders because followers have to perceive twice the benefit before they will even consider the proposal!
If the resistance to change is about fear and a perceived threat, we need to understand the negative perceptions so we can minimise the fear, and harness the positive perceptions to facilitate recognition of the benefits. Research shows that everyone has a preferred perceptual frame of reference through which we interact with the world. We also have a preferred psychological need; this underpins our motivation. These perceptions and needs provide a...
He’s a loud, fun, daring and a very charming seven-year-old. He is a natural athlete who likes to play games, get dirty, and compete. He entered this school year with a bundle of energy and very little reading skills. I had to bribe him with extra playtime for him to even attempt to show me what he could read. After many extra play sessions, soccer games and puzzles, I discovered my rebel could decode and blend words at a preschool level. He hated books and the idea of reading. He intrigued me. How did such a street-smart, clever kid function in traditional school with so few reading skills?
I set up a meeting with his mother and checked out his cumulative file. As I explored his cumulative file, I was saddened by what I found. He had come from a traditional school where he participated in regular daily lessons and also received extra pull out services. His folder was filled with remarks about his behavior, particularly noting his lack of focus and low abilities. He...
“Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.” - (Dalai Lama XIV)
These words ring true to those with strong harmonizer energy. As a base harmonizer, I grew up feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders. I felt other’s struggles as if they were my own, and did what I could to please them. My compassion and empathy is what led me to become a teacher. I wanted to help heal the world and to support and nurture children on their path through life. My ability to be open and loving with my students has always helped me cultivate strong relationships. I’ve always felt that with a little love and care I could reach anyone, despite their personality type. As this school year began, my classroom was brimming with 17 new kindergarteners, each with a unique set of characteristics. Their excitement and enthusiasm was contagious as I began to learn all of their personalities. I quickly learned that some of my students...
I believe that my primary goal as an Early Childhood educator is to create a safe environment where my students can feel free to be themselves. By meeting students with hugs, warm environments, silly nicknames and lots of play and laughter, mutual respect was easily gained between the teacher and student. With this mutual respect and safe environment for learning, the school year would go by with a lot of joy, laughter and learning. Throughout my years of teaching, I have found the ever-important task of creating a safe environment for students to be so easy it was effortless, that is, until I met Lily (actual name withheld).
Lily was four years old, soon to be five. She had giant eyes, a sweet, giggly spirit and showed up nearly every day in a new “princess” costume. The first few weeks of school, I went about my normal welcoming routine, I wanted to connect with her, so I started with the most obvious opening: the princess costume. I asked her which princess she liked...
Secrets, gambling, bragging, bribing and incidence are the name of the game for my
student with promoter energy. He is treated like no other in his class, because he literally is like NO other…and he knows it. Numero Uno, as I call him, is cunning, fast paced and incredibly persuasive and I didn’t realize it at first. When I first encountered Numero Uno, his charming demeanor was misinterpreted as timid and humble. I initially struggled to recognize him, therefore I struggled to motivate him. As the school year rolled out, I constantly found this “shy” guy at the center of countless conflicts and distractions during my lessons. Every time I confronted him, somehow, I found myself unable to verify that he had initiated these grumblings. He seemed bored, uninspired and always up to something, but I could never prove it! It wasn’t until I accidentally witnessed a conversation that I uncovered this promoter. I quickly realized who I was dealing with and...
Growing up were you a “math person?” Did you enjoy a good algorithm to solve or computing a multi-step word problem? Students as early as kindergarten classify themselves as a “math person” or on the contrary, “not a math person.” Students place themselves into these categories for a variety of reasons: past math experiences, parental influence, mindset or personality type. One PCM personality type allows students to process the world around them using data and logic. Their brains work like computers and they crave information. They also tend to believe they are “math people.” Thinker students enjoy processing math equations and spitting out answers. They feel proud when they get the right answer and love recognition of their work. However, thinkers sometimes hit a bump in the road when math moves from concrete equations and computation to real-life application. I was able to see one of my thinker students hit this bump in the road...
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