If you are a perfectionist, you might bog yourself down with too many details and then have trouble getting your work done in school or at work, running out of time to make everything perfect.
Sometimes the work or project needs only to be good enough – it need not even get an “A” or “B” grade but if you can get it done and out of the way, then you can on to next project. Granted, some projects need a perfect result, like when it depends on personal safety (like setting up space rockets so they don’t explode). Most of the time, perfection is overrated.
I was of the “A” mentality all through school into high school. I worked hard to make the grades, but it came fairly easily to me, in most cases. I graduated #2 from high school and it got me scholarships for college. So, there are perks for getting “A” grades, but not if you sacrifice too much. Not everyone is able to pull it off and should just get done what he can and go on to the next assignment. In college, I realized this. “A” grades were too intensive to work for and still be able to socialize and get a job (I worked all through my college years). I even got a bad grade in organic chemistry – and then changed my major (I did not do well memorizing reactions without seeing how they happened). I learned to do good enough and be able to get the work done for all my classes to the degree needed for me to understand the lessons. It made no difference to my getting a decent job after graduation. Then real-world knowledge kicked in at the job and I didn’t use as much of the highly technical calculations anymore.
But in more of the issues many of us deal with, there is room for good enough or a bit more “wiggle room” when completing a task. As long as you or others can learn from what you worked on, you’ve done a good enough job.
When my daughter was in middle school (she was a perfectionist to the point of not getting everything done), her principal had a talk with her about needing only to do good enough instead of perfect (which took so much more time to get done). She used the example of dinner napkins – whether you fold them fancy or just in half – they both serve the same purpose equally. It takes much more time to fold them fancy but very few, if anyone, would be expecting it and good enough was plenty good. She can still get a good grade, but maybe not the A+ and that is ok.
So, assess whether your job or project needs good enough or perfection, along with how long you want to spend at it. If perfection is not required, let some of the details go – and enjoy the extra time you gave yourself.