This for me is one of the most annoying parts of my OCD. As pretty much anyone suffering from OCD will know, your mind can easily link thoughts with actions.
So for example: If you’re washing something up and all of a sudden you have the thought of someone you love dying, it is very difficult to not want to rewash that item.
I have found that certain tasks I have to do daily, such as the washing up, cooking or cleaning have – for me – a sort of anxiety associated with them which hangs above me. Almost like I’m holding my breath whilst I do them, I have to get through the tasks (because they have to be done) but I never have time to relax and do them properly, in my own time, as I constantly feel on edge until the tasks are completed. There are just too many things that can occur which could send me spiralling.
There are things which help me through most days – which I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned in my previous posts – music is particularly good, if you’re singing away to a tune you’re less likely to be stressing about what you’re actually doing but I still find I feel anxious every time.
It would be amazing to be able to relax and enjoy tasks more. I have noticed recently that I rush in so many parts of my life, nothing can be done in a relaxed way. Decorating, sewing, gardening, piano playing, even going for a walk into town. There aren’t many things that make me feel calm and relaxed and so anxiety has started to become a feeling I live with. Some days it’s better than others, some days I feel like I have someone sitting on my chest it’s so bad.
I try to be mindful as much as I can, things that make me feel peaceful are: open spaces, forest walks, running, exercise in general, the rain – I love the rain- , hugs, reassurance, love.
Having a mental illness, any mental illness is a daily battle. When you find something that helps, that makes you feel calm and happy, make a mental or if it helps a physical note of it. Turn to it when you feel low.
So this post probably hasn’t offered much useful advice but maybe it has helped someone feel less alone. I know that that in itself can sometimes help. Over the next few weeks I plan to delve further into mindfulness, anything useful I discover I will of course share.
Just one last thought before I sign off this week to World Suicide Prevention Day which was yesterday. I may be a little late but it’s never too late to be aware of such an important issue. It is so sad to think that people feel they have no other option, suicide is preventable and we should raise awareness where we can.
Stay strong xxx