Timeliness can be a massive problem for perfectionists...

I have had this discussion with many perfectionists, who recognise that they have a problem with time-keeping but struggle to see it as a feature of perfectionism.  Poor time-keeping might be associated with laziness and sloppiness but in perfectionists this couldn’t be further than the truth.  Perfectionists tend to set rigidly high standards for themselves which are extremely difficult to meet.  Such standards can frequently be expressed in the lead up towards leaving the house...

‘My make up isn’t perfect, I didn’t polish my shoes last night, this outfit doesn’t go quite right with this accessory...  maybe I can just get this piece of work finished first... perhaps I should make some quick amendments to this report...  am I sure I’ve packed everything I’m likely to need...  my hair could do with a quick wash... that section of the house needs to be tidy before I leave...’

The point at which it becomes unmanageable depends on whether you are a healthy perfectionist or an unhealthy perfectionist and this entirely depends on the extent to which you make one small mistake mean that you have globally failed and then attach your self-worth to that.  The reason this is particularly important is because the levels of emotional strain you experience as an unhealthy perfectionist are so strong that you start to haemorrhage adrenaline.  You become extremely drained and then you are driving the above patterns without any of the energy to drive the maintenance of the standards that you set in the first place.  When you are tired your mood drops and when your mood drops you are more inclined to focus on the ways in which you have failed, when you focus on the ways in which you have failed your motivation goes out the window and you might see yourself as lazy or sloppy.   

So, if you have a problem with timeliness and it looks something like this, you might call yourself lazy or sloppy, but you are probably a perfectionist with unrelenting standards.