Paul L Hewitt

Paul L Hewitt
University of British Columbia - Vancouver | UBC ·  Department of Psychology

PhD

About

324
Publications
229,518
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20,383
Citations
Citations since 2017
120 Research Items
8324 Citations
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Additional affiliations
January 2019 - present
University of British Columbia - Vancouver
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (324)
Article
Theory and research suggest that parental bonding behaviours (i.e., overprotection and care) are important predictors of socially prescribed perfectionism. However, despite evidence suggesting that maternal and paternal behaviours may differ in their effects on children's development and their mental health outcomes, no studies thus far have invest...
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Meta-analyses conclude that cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for perfectionism is efficacious without addressing indices of efficacy such as reliable improvement, deterioration, dropout, and change at follow-up. We addressed this through a re-analysis of the 16 randomized controlled trials included in Galloway et al. (2022), Robinson and Wade (20...
Article
Objective: to longitudinally investigate the effects of individual's factors on subsequent burn-out/psychological distress in a sample of mental health practitioners, testing if higher attachment anxiety and avoidance, and lower reflective functioning (i.e., certainty and uncertainty of mental states) and well-being at baseline may lead to a great...
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Objective: This randomized controlled trial investigated the efficacy of group dynamic-relational therapy (DRT) relative to group psychodynamic supportive therapy (PST) in treating perfectionism and improving psychological functioning. Hypothesis: Psychodynamically informed therapies, particularly DRT, will be efficacious in treating perfectionism...
Preprint
Regardless of country of residence, individuals of East Asian background typically report higher interdependent and lower independent self-construal than European-descent individuals. Despite previous work that have been done in people of East Asian descent in Western societies, little is known about the differences in their self-construal in relat...
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The interest in treating underlying core vulnerability factors or transdiagnostic processes has been a focus of much attention. In this paper we describe our application of group dynamic- relational psychotherapy to the treatment of perfectionism, a core personality vulnerability factor associated with various forms and types of dysfunction and dis...
Article
This prospective longitudinal study evaluated changes in psychological distress among adolescents, pre‐pandemic to intra‐pandemic, the extent to which within‐person and between‐person differences in trait multidimensional perfectionism were associated with such changes, and the role of stress in explaining associations between perfectionism and psy...
Article
Objectives: Student-athletes are unique in their undertaking of full-time academic and athletic roles. Their dual roles impose a multitude of responsibilities in their daily lives, yet little is known about the factors that may negatively impact their ability to effectively manage these responsibilities. Participants: Data from a large sample of Ca...
Article
The tendency to hide and mask suffering and one's perceived imperfections is one of the biggest obstacles in treating those with prominent perfectionistic traits. In this single case, we present an integrative form of psychotherapy for patients with recurrent strategies aimed at neither displaying nor disclosing their perfectionism. Emily was a 26-...
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Background and Objectives: The impact of trait perfectionism on coping and affective response has been well-documented in laboratory performances, and yet little is known about the role played by perfectionistic self-presentation in performances beyond the effects of trait perfectionism. Design: We aimed to address this knowledge gap by examining t...
Article
The International Classification of Diseases 11th Revision (ICD-11) contains a dimensional model of personality disorder. Beyond general personality dysfunction, this model accommodates six personality descriptors depicting maladaptive personality characteristics. Perfectionism is a well-researched multidimensional personality disposition with stro...
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Research on adults indicates other-oriented perfectionism (requiring perfection from others) is associated with various consequential outcomes independent of self-oriented perfectionism (requiring perfection of the self) and socially prescribed perfectionism (believing others require perfection of the self). However, historically, the most widely u...
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The Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) is a theory-driven model of the relationship between perfectionism, depressive symptoms, and suicide ideation. However, to date, tests of the PSDM have not included anti-mattering (i.e., feelings of not mattering alongside feelings of insignificance and marginalization) as a mediator or suicide id...
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Full-text available
The Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) is a theory-driven model of the relationship between perfectionism, depressive symptoms, and suicide ideation. However, to date, tests of the PSDM have not included anti-mattering (i.e., feelings of not mattering alongside feelings of insignificance and marginalization) as a mediator or suicide id...
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The social expectations model posits that children become perfectionistic in response to the contingent self-worth associated with parental expectations and parental criticism. Alternatively, the social learning model contends children emulate their parents’ perfectionistic tendencies through observation and imitation. However, inconsistent finding...
Preprint
Full-text available
Parental perfectionism (e.g., perfectionistic concerns) has been strongly implicated in adolescent psychological maladjustment such as depression and anxiety. However, little is known about the links between parental perfectionistic self-presentation (i.e., the interpersonal expressions of perfectionism) and adolescent psychological outcomes. Accor...
Article
Perfectionism is a multidimensional personality construct with various components. Socially prescribed perfectionism (i.e., perceived social pressures and expectations to be perfect) is one key element. This trait dimension represents a chronic source of pressure that elicits feelings of helplessness and hopelessness at extreme levels. Unfortunatel...
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In this study, we sought to examine associations between dimensions of trait perfectionism and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms among a community sample of adults who experienced at least one traumatic event and determine whether the associations between trait perfectionism dimensions and PTSD symptomatology varied as a function of per...
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In the current article, we consider the broad question of “Why is perfectionism antithetical to mindfulness?” and we examine the implications for the treatment of perfectionists suffering from stress-related illnesses and disorders. In addition, we review past research on perfectionism and mindfulness. Finally, we also report two empirical studies...
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Introduction: The Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) posits that perfectionism confers risk for depression by promoting social disconnection. However, the specific indirect effect of social disconnection on the prospective relation of perfectionism dimensions with depression severity is not well understood. The aim of the current study...
Article
COVID-19, and efforts to mitigate its spread, are creating extensive mental health problems. Experts have speculated the mental, economic, behavioral, and psychosocial problems linked to the COVID-19 pandemic may lead to a rise in suicide behavior. However, a quantitative synthesis is needed to reach an overall conclusion regarding the pandemic-sui...
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Theory and evidence converge to suggest perfectionism is a personality construct that matters a great deal and is linked with many consequential outcomes (e.g., depression, eating disorders, suicide, marital problems, and procrastination). With the multidimensional perfectionism construct turning 30 years of age, our review critically examines the...
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Narcissistic vulnerability has been proposed as a dispositional feature that confers susceptibility to depression from earlier maladaptive parent-child relations. Limited research has examined narcissistic vulnerability as a mediator between perceived parental responsiveness and depressive symptoms, particularly with consideration of interpersonal...
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Decades of research implicates perfectionism in depressive symptoms. Yet, inconsistent findings, underpowered studies, and the tendency for researchers to assume one direction of influence have clouded understanding of whether perfectionism is a vulnerability factor for depressive symptoms, a complication of depressive symptoms, or both. Our primar...
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Perfectionism is considered a multidimensional and transdiagnostic personality style that can occur in severe forms of personality disorders. The aim of this study is to explore the acceptability and the feasibility of an integrative mindful compassion group intervention for patients who were diagnosed with personality disorders and reported promin...
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Objective: The Interview for Perfectionistic Behavior is a structured interview that is aimed to o ering the clinician an idiographic tool for assessing perfectionism. It investigates through 51 items the three components of the dynamic-relational model of perfectionism (traits; self-presentation strategies; automatic ruminations), allowing to rate...
Article
Objective: Advancing evidence-based theories of suicide is critical to improving suicide prevention. The aim of the current study was to investigate suicidal desire through an emerging theory of suicide, the Three-Step Theory (3ST). Specifically, this study investigated the validity and predictive utility of Steps 1 and 2 of the 3ST in a Canadian...
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Although there is accumulating evidence of the importance of personality in predicting group psychotherapy outcomes, the extent to which Big Five personality traits predict group psychotherapy outcomes is debatable. Thus far, findings from individual treatment studies suggest Big Five traits have a marginal-to-small impact on the success of psychot...
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Coaching athletes is highly rewarding yet stressful, especially at the elite level where media, fans, and sponsors can contribute to an environment that, if not well-managed by the coach, can lead to burnout. Coaches who display perfectionistic tendencies, such as striving for flawlessness, may be particularly vulnerable—even more so if they are ov...
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Background Theorized to stem from experiences of childhood emotional neglect, narcissistic vulnerability has been identified as contributing to expressions of psychiatric distress such as depressive and anxiety symptoms, particularly due to shame-proneness. Aims To investigate narcissistic vulnerability and shame as mediators between perceived chi...
Article
In this article, Canadian psychotherapy researchers and teachers review the state of psychodynamic therapy (PDT) in Canada. We review the ways in which PDT has been implemented, developed and researched within the public and private sector, and how psychoanalytic and psychodynamic practitioners regionally have responded to the challenges of evidenc...
Article
Objective Perfectionism has been described as a multidimensional core vulnerability factor in various forms of dysfunction and disorders. Recently, we described our empirically supported‐dynamic‐relational treatment for perfectionism. This treatment integrates psychodynamic and interpersonal principles to reduce perfectionism and symptoms and enhan...
Article
Introduction: Perfectionism is a personality trait leading individuals to develop unrealistically high standards for performance accompanied by tendencies for overly critical self-evaluations. Onset of perfectionism may begin early in life, sometimes in young children. The Child-Adolescent Perfectionism Scale - Parents Report (CAPS–PR) is a 9-item...
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The stress generation model posits perfectionistic concerns and perfectionistic strivings generate stress and, in turn, depression. Alternatively, the Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) maintains perfectionistic concerns and perfectionistic strivings confer risk for depression through social disconnection. However, inconsistent finding...
Article
This study investigated the relationship between self-oriented and socially prescribed perfectionism and performance satisfaction in response to challenging laboratory problem-solving tasks. In the laboratory session, 130 undergraduate students completed measures of perfectionism and stress and then attempted time-limited arithmetic and anagram tas...
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The existential model of perfectionism and depressive symptoms (EMPDS) posits difficulties accepting the past (i.e., viewing past experiences as incoherent, dissatisfying, and meaningless) explains when and why socially prescribed perfectionism (i.e., perceiving others as requiring perfection of the self) confers risk for depressive symptoms. Howev...
Article
Numerous factors influence whether an individual is able and willing to seek professional help for psychological difficulties. One of these may be perfectionism, a multidimensional personality construct that has been linked to poor psychological adjustment. The current study investigated whether perfectionism traits and self‐presentational facets w...
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The Existential Model of Perfectionism and Depressive Symptoms (EMPDS) is a promising integrative model. According to the EMPDS, self-oriented perfectionism and socially prescribed perfectionism indirectly influence depressive symptoms through rumination and difficulty accepting the past. Yet, the extent to which self-oriented perfectionism, social...
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Introduction The current study investigates the effects of perfectionism discrepancies (PD) and social hopelessness (SH) on problematic social media use as conceptualized by the cognitive-behavioral model. Methods: A sample of 400 university students (52.3% women; mean age = 22.01 ± 1.99) completed measures assessing PD, SH, and problematic social...
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Half a century of theoretical accounts, case histories, and evidence implies perfectionism limits the success of psychotherapy and makes it hard for people to participate in and benefit from close relationships. Likewise, intimate relationships are crucial determinants of the success of treatment. However, the extent to which specific types of rela...
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The psychological mechanisms that potentially underlie the negative correlation between narcissism and relationship satisfaction are unknown. This study examined the potential mediating role of perfectionistic self-presentation in the association between grandiose and vulnerable narcissistic traits and relationship satisfaction. The Actor-Partner I...
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Objectives: The negative impact of pre-treatment patient perfectionism on therapeutic alliance and outcomes has been well-documented. However, there is much to learn about how patient perfectionism impacts the development of the therapeutic alliance. Our study addressed this by examining the extent to which trait and self-presentational components...
Article
In this article, we introduce this second special issue on the assessment of perfectionism along with an overview of developments in the perfectionism field over the past 30 years following the shift to studying perfectionism as a multidimensional construct. We examine some key contributions over the past decade, including the proliferation of meta...
Article
The developmental model of perfectionism in the Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) posits that perfectionism may arise from insecure attachment (i.e., attachment anxiety and avoidance) and perceived defectiveness rooted in asynchronous or adverse parent-child relationships. To provide a test of the developmental portion of the PSDM, we...
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Perfectionism is a personality style involving the requirement for the self and/or others to be perfect or to present the self as perfect, and it is a vulnerability factor to many clinical and non-clinical problems in both children and adults. Hewitt, Flett, and Mikail's (2017) Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) posits that perfectioni...
Article
The objective of the present study was to develop and assess the validity of a short form of the Child–Adolescent Perfectionism Scale (CAPS). Two Portuguese samples composed of 756 adolescents were used to cross-validate the factorial structure of a nine-item Child–Adolescent Perfectionism Scale—Short Form (CAPS–SF). The CAPS–SF consists of a four-...
Article
In the current article, we describe the development and validation of the Mistake Rumination Scale as a supplement to existing trait and cognitive measures of perfectionism. The Mistake Rumination Scale is a seven-item inventory that taps the tendency to ruminate about a past personal mistake. Psychometric analyses confirmed that the Mistake Rumina...
Article
In the current article, we describe the development and validation of a self-report measure of self-generated stress and its associations with measures of perfectionism, self-criticism, and distress. The Self-Generated Stress Scale is a seven-item inventory that taps the tendency to see oneself as someone who generates and adds to existing personal...
Article
Perfectionistic automatic thoughts have been linked with depressive symptoms in numerous cross-sectional studies, but this link has not been assessed in longitudinal research. An investigation with two timepoints was conducted to test whether perfectionistic automatic thoughts, as assessed by the Perfectionism Cognitions Inventory (PCI), are contri...
Article
Theories and research have alluded to the role of adverse childhood experiences in the origin and development of perfectionism. Yet, there is a paucity of research on the links between perfectionism and various categories of childhood adversity or maltreatment (e.g., abuse, neglect, and family dysfunction). The aim of this study was to explore the...
Article
Previous research has linked socially prescribed perfectionism (perceiving perfectionistic expectations from others) with personality dysfunction in clinical and nonclinical samples. However, the mechanism by which socially prescribed perfectionism is related to personality dysfunction is largely unknown. This study sought to test the hypothesis th...
Article
Previous research on Chinese individuals in Canada showed that mainstream acculturation (i.e., adoption of the customs and values of mainstream Canadian culture) was consistently associated with more permissive and less restrictive patterns in sexual attitudes, response, and behaviours. However, the role of heritage acculturation (i.e., retention o...
Article
Although now there is accumulating research on the effectiveness of psychotherapy for perfectionism, this research has been based almost exclusively on self-report data. In this article, we describe analyses from the University of British Columbia Perfectionism Treatment Study assessing close other informant ratings of change in perfectionism trait...
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Although previous studies investigated the characteristics of therapeutic alliance in group treatments, there is still a dearth of research on group alliance ruptures and repairs. The model by Safran and Muran was originally developed to address therapeutic alliance in individual therapies, and the usefulness of this approach to group intervention...
Article
Extreme perfectionism has been linked with distress and dysfunction. This association is reflected by the recent development of the Big Three Perfectionism Scale (BTPS), which has superordinate trait-based scales that assess 3 broad elements—rigid, self-critical, and narcissistic perfectionism. We examined psychometric features of the BTPS as well...
Article
Perfectionism, defined as the need to be or appear to be perfect, is a multidimensional personality construct that makes individuals vulnerable to a host of clinical problems including depression, anxiety, personality and eating disorders, as well as suicide behaviors, interpersonal dysfunction, and difficulties achieving successful therapeutic out...
Article
The Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) is a promising integrative model explaining relations between socially prescribed perfectionism (i.e., perceiving others require perfection) and depressive symptoms. Yet, the nature of the social disconnection proposed by the PSDM requires explication. Likewise, longitudinal tests of the PSDM are...
Article
Full-text available
The Perfectionism Social Disconnection Model (PSDM) is a promising integrative model explaining relations between socially prescribed perfectionism (i.e., perceiving others require perfection) and depressive symptoms. Yet, the nature of the social disconnection proposed by the PSDM requires explication. Likewise, longitudinal tests of the PSDM are...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: Over 50 years of research implicates perfectionism in suicide. Yet the role of perfectionism in suicide needs clarification due to notable between-study inconsistencies in findings, underpowered studies, and uncertainty about whether perfectionism confers risk for suicide. We addressed this by meta-analyzing perfectionism's relationship...
Article
Perfectionism involves impression management concerns, and yet perfectionistic-self presentation is often neglected when studying academic problems (e.g., communication anxiety). Research also focuses predominantly on undergraduate students, despite graduate degrees becoming increasingly common. This study tests incremental prediction of perfection...
Article
In this article, we describe how individualized feedback, in the form of a clinical formulation, is used in our dynamic-relational group treatment of perfectionism (Hewitt et al., 2015), a core vulnerability or transdiagnostic personality factor. The authors discuss briefly their conceptualization and assessment of perfectionism as well as other as...
Article
Despite experiencing higher levels of psychological distress, individuals with high levels of perfectionism are more reluctant to seek treatment for psychological issues and they are often treatment resistant when in treatment. Mental illness stigma has been shown to be a significant barrier to treatment seeking in other populations and it stands t...