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The Perils of Perfectionism23:31

This article is more than 11 years old.
Nobody's perfect, but perfectionism is a virtue — right? Great athletes, star CEOs, and Nobel laureates embody it. But where does the perfectionist tendency lead? Great success for some — but then there are the crazy bosses, pushy parents, and high-striving students on the edge of a breakdown.

New research on perfectionism reveals that the urge to get things just right can go too far. It's linked with compulsive behavior, eating disorders, and depression. The perfect, it turns out, really is the enemy of the good — or, at least, of good health.

This hour, On Point: perfectionism and mental health.Guests:

Gordon Flett, professor of psychology and associate dean at York University in Toronto, he is author of "Perfectionism: Theory, Research and Treatment."

Heather Thompson-Brenner, clinical research professor of pyschology at Boston University, she is a program director at BU's Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders.

This program aired on December 7, 2007.

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