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  • Writer's pictureEve da Silva Msc, PgDip

Book Review

The Anxious Perfectionist

Typically, those of us who struggle with perfectionism have a lot of positive thoughts about it. We think it keeps us motivated, we think it keeps us on track and most of all we feel deep down that if we pursue the path dictated by perfectionism we will fix the uncomfortable feeling inside.

Naturally the path to healing perfectionism entails learning how to relate to difficult feelings and to improve our relationship with ourselves. I particularly enjoyed how Ong and Twohig share relatable examples from their own lives and case studies to illustrate how common this is. In their introduction they actually mention how many academics and psychologists are hampered by perfectionism and that really struck a chord for me - I would recommend this book to fellow trainee psychologists especially as clinical psychology training certainly triggers a lot of anxiety for many of us.

I wasn’t expecting my first book review to be such a glowing one but I’m grateful I came across this book at the end of my first term as a trainee.

When I talk to clients about perfectionism their first concern, completely understandably, is that without it they wouldn’t know how to achieve their dreams. Clarissa Ong and Michael Twohig answer this question and with their thoughtful step by step approach, they instil hope that it’s possible to drop unhelpful perfectionism and reclaim what truly matters.

The book reads like a session by session exploration of meaningful change with a Psychologist. It will equip you with knowledge that will see them through the ups and downs that life brings. While the title signposts the teachings on anxiety and perfectionism; the knowledge includes practical mindfulness, finding ones values and reducing other coping strategies like addiction and self criticism.

Please me know what you think about my book reviews and if you’ve seen any books you’d like me to add to my tbr pile for future reviews 💜

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