Being a perfectionist may lie in your genes: Scientists

London: If you`re always striving for perfection, your parents are probably to blame, according to a new study.

Perfectionists are born - not made - scientists claim, adding that the pursuit of perfection runs in families and is determined by your genes.

Researchers at Michigan State University made the link by studying the twin registry and comparing the personalities of identical and non-identical female twins aged 12 to 22.

Identical twins have the same genetic make-up so if a personality trait is determined by nurture alone, they should be just as likely as non-identical twins to share it.

However, one study in the Depression and Anxiety journal, found identical twins had much closer scores on measures of perfectionism and anxiety than non-identical twins.

This indicated that perfectionism is determined more by nature than nurture and can be attributed to a person`s parents.

"We found there is a strong genetic component to perfectionism and the association between perfectionism and anxiety," Dr Jason Moser, who led the study, said.

"There is also a significant contribution from the unique environment of the individual outside the home. But we didn`t find evidence that the shared home environment had much to do with perfectionism," Moser said.

The study showed that a lack of perfectionism - being slapdash or impulsive - also has a strong genetic component.

A second study of 340 twins, published in the Journal of Eating Disorders, looked at the extent to which girls and women accepted the idea that thin bodies were more attractive.
It found that identical twins were more alike than non-identical twins in how much they idolized the bodies of skinny celebrities - a sign that they are also more likely to be perfectionists.


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