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Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

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Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Hi y'all,
I'm a 40-year-old adult child of alcoholics. Just began therapy with a psychologist because I recognize some behaviors that aren't good. Such as: agonizing over every detail of everything I do, trying to be "perfect" so I won't be criticized, and doing way too much thinking without any action. Examination of the way I behave has been enlightening -- this affects everything that I do and has taken a toll on my relationships. In addition to the counseling I've begun rereading the book, "Adult Children of Alcoholics" and started exercising to relieve my anxiety. Also I do SR via Centerpointe.

Can any of you share any advice on what else I can do to stop/change this kind of thinking? Thank you.



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Anon on November 26, 2002 at 13:41:11:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Start drinking? LOL...

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Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 13:52:53:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Hi Southern Bell:

You described me in your post. I did not grow up in an alcoholic home, but it was dysfunctional. I am curious to know what you think the particular part of being a child of alcoholics would make you behave this way. (If that is what you are thinking.) I am asking because I want to compare it to my environment.



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Daisy on November 26, 2002 at 13:55:20:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 13:52:53:

It describes me to a T also. And I wasn't a child of alcoholics. But I was sexually molested for years at a very young age and think that has something to do with it. Oh, and my parents were very performance oriented and never showed me affection.



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Rick on November 26, 2002 at 14:12:31:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Look up EFT (emotional freedom therapy) which is the newest way of releasing past emotional problems. When these "Negative" thoughts come into your mind, which I'm sure happens 100 times a day, change that negative thought to a positive one because if you allow these negative thoughts to enter into your subconscious mind, they will then be transfered to your phyical body in the form of an illness. The mind controls the body therefore, every time you think a negative thought, you're "Programing" your mind to transfer that hurtful thought into a phyical health problem. If this type of transfer didn't occur, your mind couldn't cope with the emotional pain and a nervous breakdown could occur. What I'm saying is to "Trick Your Mind" by sending it loving and happy thoughts, rather than the destructive ones, that you really did experience.
* Rick *

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Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 14:31:36:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Daisy on November 26, 2002 at 13:55:20:

I was sexually molested by a neighbor when I was 8 & 9, but I liked it and I carry no shame or guilt surrounding it. In fact, I have a lot of good feelings about it.

I had a lot of affection from my mom and dad, but my dad had a lot of mental problems and used to hit my mom. They finally divorced and at 10 I had a new stepfather. He was just a plain jerk, very critical and put me down all the time. I don't want to blame that situation though. I want to take responsibility and change.



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by A Perfectionist on November 26, 2002 at 14:47:32:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 14:31:36:

If you are are lucky (or astute) you can turn your learned behavior of analysis and perfectionism to your
advantage by starting a career that values those skills. Computer programming or accounting come to mind.
Not so handy in the realm of emotions and relationships though. Here you will simply have to train yourself to
stop at a certain point in your "checking" cycle, and let enough be enough. It helps to keep big signs
plastered all over the house to remind you that NOBODY'S PERFECT and QUIT NOW WHILE YOU HAVE YOUR
SANITY.
I am sure as time goes by you will think of others. The Important thing is to not just look
at the signs but to follow the directives as well. Once you get in the habit of noticing that nothing bad will
happen if your task isn't perfect (or conversely nothing overly good will happen from "perfection") you can
settle down into a happy medium.
This will work wonders in any relationship you happen to be involved in also.



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 15:02:00:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by A Perfectionist on November 26, 2002 at 14:47:32:

Just to reply to your intuitiveness, I am a CIS major with an Accounting minor. But, working as a controller it only makes things worse because then I can obsess about perfectionism and act out on it. I make people look for a penny because it can be an offset of a major debit against a credit. Also, I made the company migrate from a simple accounting program to a complicated one because the simple one could not track in detail the transactions. I drove everyone crazy in the migration because I had to have it balance to the penny. I can't describe to you how awful this is and the controlling behavior that it intensifies.

I wish I could become an actress and develop my creative side. If money weren't an issue and I could have the freedom, I would do something like that. This is where the over thinking and non-action comes in. I have all kinds of creative ideas to get me out of this situation, but because I am so rooted in this trap that I can't act enough to materialize my ideas.



Re: Paralysis ...and Action

Posted by A Perfectionist on November 26, 2002 at 18:10:28:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 15:02:00:

I've been in your shoes, walked miles in them as a matter of fact, so I know the pain. Allow me to put my size 9.5's
where the sun don't shine for a moment, and call you on not being able to act.
Yes YOU CAN ACT! It's comfortable not to act. Very comfortable. That which you long to do -stage or theatre acting, is
in fact in reach. It requires neither money not huge amounts of time, but you should understand up front that it will
be another outlet for analysis and perfectionism, not creativity (although it can be that too).

There are theatre groups and playhouses that are looking for people for whom the acting bug has bit. There may be
little or no payment involved, and you will have to give up some of your free time. It can be very rewarding, and
truth be told, a huge ego boost on open night. That said, the sad part is that you are going to have to tackle the
over-analysis and perfectionism part directly. I applaud you using Centerpointe as a way to counteract some of this
programming, perhaps you will also take a look at The Invisible Path to Success mentioned elsewhere on this board. The entity closest too you can work miracles in this
regard, and you won't have to do everything by yourself. As I said I really feel for you, because I've been there (I'm a computer major also but with a minor in art, and the
A&P simply migrated with me to other endeavors rather than being "cured" by them. "Wherever you go -there you are."



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Daisy (different one) on November 26, 2002 at 18:15:28:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

I have to agree wtih Rick about EFT. I've used it around fear and anxiety and it's very powerful. I would also say that having an awareness of how you feel and why is very important. In my early 20s, simple awareness and a desire to change my behavior was what helped me to resolve some obsessive-compulsive behavior that had bothered me for years.
Take care,
Daisy

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Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by cris on November 26, 2002 at 18:43:08:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

I would just like to point out a positive aspect of "A and P" people. Their writing skills in their posts is better than the average. Keep that internal editor going!

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Re: Paralysis ...and Action

Posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 19:08:23:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis ...and Action posted by A Perfectionist on November 26, 2002 at 18:10:28:

Thanks for that message! I never even looked into a local theatre group. I applaud you for being balanced (right brain/left brain) with the CIS and Art. I wish I would have done something like that. Maybe I would be in a different place now.

It's not me who uses Centerpointe - that was Southern Belle. I feel bad I inched in on her message, but I had to because what she said is me. I checked out the Invisible Path to Success and it sounds very interesting. Have you found it has made a major difference in your life?

I understand what you are saying about the migration, but I think that with an understanding of what is going on with my behavior that maybe I can use creative outlets to facilitate a change in that behavior. Besides, I am really unbalanced - all analytical work and no room for play or creativity has really taken it's toll.



Re: P by A Thank you for starting this! great discussion wish u well nmi

Posted by Jan S. on November 26, 2002 at 19:54:36:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

nmi

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Art, Action and Acting

Posted by A Perfectionist on November 26, 2002 at 23:44:51:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis ...and Action posted by Western Cowgirl on November 26, 2002 at 19:08:23:

Well this is strange. I didn't start out in Information Systems. Computing was a hobby. Many moons ago, in a completely
suprising fit of parental solidarity my divorced parents BOTH decided that my budding career as an
artist would result in my imminent starvation and "urged" [read coerced] me to take up another career path. Thus
my computing hobby became a path to a paid vocation. I never gave up art per se, it just sort of moved into the
background, but my right brain continues to assert itself in other purely creative endeavors.

The Invisible Path to Success changes one's perception, changes the way of interacting with your environment
because it "explains" how the world works, your place in it, and why other people, the one's you interact with are
there. It also explains how to make changes -lasting changes in your life. This is something other system promise
but rarely deliver on because they don't understand the underlying mechanism. Since IPtS does changes are far easier to implement. I use it with Centerpointe and another
system
as a sort of TransHuman Operating System, but while it is simple* I would not classify it as "easy." It's a
good fit for me but I can't recommend it for everyone. For you it may fit since it will definitely give your right
brain a workout, but then so will a host of other activities such as acting with a local theatre group.

Obviously our goals are somewhat differentbutthe nice thing about these programs is that they fit a wide variety
goals, I believe that IPtS is the one that help you the most in terms of deprogramming the compulsion to overanalyze
and perfectionism.



Re: Art, Action and Acting

Posted by perfecting on November 27, 2002 at 09:09:09:

In Reply to: Art, Action and Acting posted by A Perfectionist on November 26, 2002 at 23:44:51:

Gosh, just at the time when I thought I had already got life (and everything in life) pretty much figured out, I suddenly realize that I'm starting first-grade again! Man O man. Amazing!

The Miraculous Vessels theory--as far as their three goals here are concerned--I think I got them mostly, on my own, without being aware of it but nonetheless feeling them all the time. But the Huna and Drisana--the ray and chakra (sp?)thing--I'd never, never have thought of them on my own. I feel kinda dumb: only after WEEKS (!) of "initiation" on the very basal level (isn't that the lowest one? I'd think so), did I finally move on to the next lowest level just some hours ago (thank goodness I didn't get STUCK on the first level!). WOW. What can I say. All of this I would never have believed if I hadn't experienced it first-hand. So I guess this is what heaven is all about, huh?

I'm guessing this must be YOUR way of dealing with difficult people ;)(the idea of which is suggested in the SUN link). Well, turned out to be a wonderful gift to the difficult people. Wonder if this has somewhat "enslaved" you the "initiator"; probably not, since for someone who is in THAT much control and command(obviously), it's hard to imagine them being "enslaved" or "trapped" by anything/anybody ;D

Well...gratitude, thanksgiving, and more...

(do you have an email address that WORKS? or, alternatively, try mine: first name+first letter of last name (yea, you got it right)+168@yahoo.com Birthday is coming up on Thanksgiving Day--coincidence? So a word from you would be nice...)



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism (Archive in alcohol.)

Posted by Walt Stoll on November 27, 2002 at 10:05:28:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Great Discussion.

Walt



Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by Happygal on November 27, 2002 at 11:06:43:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Hi Southern Belle,

Congratulations for making it to psychotherapy, and for beginning a wellness program, too! Both are great!

I too grew up in an alcoholic family (I'm 45). It took me years to understand that it was a problem because everybody tried to act as though things were normal. I thought that was just the way life was and it wasn't a big deal. Except funny thing, no matter what I tried, I just couldn't get my own life to work right. The hidden effects of that kind of influence on a child are devastating. It totally screws up your thinking. As my psychotherapist says, it is so insidious it takes many ACA's a long time or a lifetime to work it out.

So, you are asking for advice on how to stop and change the thinking. Here's what I've learned. I've definitely spent a lot of time working on this myself!

The first thing is to be aware of the thoughts. Are they negative or positive? Do they repeat over and over? Are they REALLY true? (You may have to spend some time with the thought to answer this last question accurately. Bring it to your psychotherapist if necessary.)

After you find out what thoughts you are thinking, you can start working with them. What would be more beneficial -- i.e., what thoughts would you like to replace them with? For example, if you make a mistake and then think, "I can never do anything right," figure out what would be a better thought. How about, "Oh, it's a mistake but I can fix that easily. Mistakes are correctable." or "I do lots of things right, but maybe I have something to learn here."

Once you figure out a good replacement thought, then use it whenever you catch yourself thinking the negative thought. "Oops, there I go thinking that again. Well, that's not true. Mistakes are correctable." After you do this for a while, you will no longer linger on the negative thought and eventually cease to think it.

Here's one more thing. Also, make a point of thinking positive thoughts to nurture yourself whenever possible. (Especially when having a bad day). "Oh, I washed the dishes perfectly today! I do many things right."

Keep reading books, talking to others (psychotherapists, support groups) and working on yourself! It's great when you get to the other side of this!

Best wishes,

Happygal

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Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism - p.s.

Posted by Happygal on November 27, 2002 at 11:11:25:

In Reply to: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism posted by Southern Belle on November 26, 2002 at 13:03:31:

Hi again Southern Belle,

It comes down to learning to be true to YOURSELF, finding out what that self is, and accepting and honoring yourself just as you are (regardless of what other people think).

Best wishes,
Happygal

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Initiations

Posted by A Perfectionist on November 27, 2002 at 19:26:07:

In Reply to: Re: Art, Action and Acting posted by perfecting on November 27, 2002 at 09:09:09:

The initiations are performed by the instructor. Unless you are taking a course every month, you shouldn't be getting
overwhelmed with the changes to your energy body. Very few of the courses are of the self-initiating variety, that
is what the instructors are for. They have the necessary training and angelic help to make sure the changes
go smoothly and that nothing untoward happens to your energy body.

Most people's idea of heaven is ain to a child's concept of Christmas and Santa Claus. Very innocent/ignorant.
Forgotten for the most part.

Self-mastery is a difficult concept for most people to grasp. If you can control yourself, then you do not have to control others. As far as enslavement is concerned, it is a low-vibration state of mind. If you practive thinking on "a higher plane" then after a short while enslavement
(to certain thoughts) will not so easily be accomplished.

People who wish to assert their will over others are usually unable to control themselves, and perceive other
people as a threat. This seems to be a projection of their own lack of control "onto" other people, so that
other people come to represent their own impulses. Since it is difficult to control other people, and of course
does not address core issues of controlling self, the problem remains unresolved. If you can control self, then
others will not only find it difficult to control (or "enslave") you, but command and control will
naturally flow as a response to the environment rather than specific people. This pretty much eliminates
manipulative people, since in order to be manipulated, you have to have an obvious flaw or weakness that
can be exploited.

I can be reached at sun_ra@msn.com.

Happy Birthday.


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Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism

Posted by me (and you) on November 27, 2002 at 20:03:27:

In Reply to: Re: Paralysis by Analysis and Perfectionism (Archive in alcohol.) posted by Walt Stoll on November 27, 2002 at 10:05:28:

It never hurts to entertain "The Emperor" of the board...

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