Ah, the Straight-A Student Syndrom. SASS. Has it ever happened to you?
You discover something new. Let’s say you play pool for the first time. You might struggle a bit at first before you get it right.
You then quickly rise to the occasion and have no more difficulties what so ever. You get straight A’s, metaphorically speaking. Every time you touch a ball, it goes in the right direction. You’re on a winning streak.
Then something happens. As time goes by, the pressure rises. You have to get it right every time now, because now that you’ve become the “master”, you can’t fail anymore. One failure will lose you the title. You will be ridiculed.
So you play it safe. Or you stop playing all together. You never rise to the next level, you never discover what’s in store for you. You are one of those people others say they’re brilliant, just because a long time ago they have impressed with their skills. It’s all a matter of rumors and built-up effect now.
If you know what I mean, then you too are SASSy.
You are afraid of doing anything in case what you’ve done isn’t as good as it should be.
You are your own cruelest judge.
You are petrified at the idea of not finishing something you’ve started, and at the same time too afraid to finish it because you lack the self-confidence.
Your motto is: if it’s not perfect, it’s not good enough.
I think there are probably a hundred psychological reasons why we think like that. Does it mean we want to be acknowledged? Or simply loved? Does it mean we are afraid of staying alone with ourselves, because we’ve only been defined so far by what others think of us? Where did that self-confidence go?
What I know is that now, as I’ve established the syndrome (actually, my wise aunt has said it out loud, after listening to me whimpering about how I struggle to write my dissertation), I know what I’m dealing with. I know how stupid it is. I know I have to take a deep breath and just get to work, one tiny step at a time.
Are you SASSy too? How do you cope with your perfectionism? Does it make you procrastinate like crazy? Do you have a solution?
Let it all out in the comments!