Friday, 7 December 2007

Perfectionism at the IHT

A fascinating article in yesterday's International Herald Tribune ('Perfectionism on a short fuse'; Thursday, December 6, 2007) reported on new research that 'focuses on a familiar type, perfectionists, who panic or blow a fuse when things do not turn out just so. The findings not only confirm that such purists are often at risk for mental distress...but also suggest that perfectionism is a valuable lens through which to understand a variety of seemingly unrelated mental difficulties, from depression to compulsive behaviour to addiction.'

I'm not sure I am or ever was a perfectionist - perhaps - but I've certainly had my share of mental difficulties, especially when working for the IHT.

If you work at the IHT, perhaps you could post your comments on whether any of the IHT's masthead employees - be they the publisher, on the editorial or the commercial side - fall under any of the following three types of perfectionist the article reports some researchers as having identified:

  • 'Self-oriented strivers who struggle to live up to their high standards and appear to be at risk of self-critical depression'
  • 'Outwardly focused zealots who expect perfectionism from others, often ruining relationships'
  • 'Those desperate to live up to an ideal they're convinced others expect of them, a risk factor for suicidal thinking and eating disorders'

Your comments and observations are welcome, and please feel free to include any NYT employee involved with the IHT, be they in Paris or New York.

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