Perfectionism & ADHD: The Relationship Between the Two May Surprise You! by Mabel Yiu
Many would assume that attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and perfectionism are polar opposites. Where ADHD is a disorder that deals with hyperactivity, impulsive behavior and difficulty with focusing, perfectionism is most commonly associated with requiring a high level of attention to details. However, despite their perceived differences, there is a strong relationship between having ADHD and being a perfectionist that many may not realize.
- Perfectionism in people with ADHD can lead to feelings of needing to overcompensate. People with ADHD are often told to “try harder,” without fully understanding the underlying conditions of the disorder. A perfectionist with ADHD will constantly feel the need to prove their worth in order to be seen as “trying harder” as requested.
- Perfectionists have maladaptive coping strategies that force them into a mild degree of disassociation. The inattentiveness that is presented can mimic ADHD.
- ADHD perfectionists need help setting realistic perspectives on accomplishing tasks and personal behaviors. Helping people with ADHD and perfectionism cope with their behaviors is about teaching how to accept flaws and learn to prioritize.
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