Now I’ve been dealing with my OCD demons for a fair few years now (over 20!) and although I feel I’ve gotten to grips with them to a certain extent, I know if I really look at my life that they still hold me back in many areas.
I have, I believe, reached a sort of plateau or ‘comfy place’ in my life and though this isn’t necessarily a bad thing – to have a steady job, relationship and social life – it does make it quite easy to just coast along. Never having to step outside of my comfort zone means some of my OCD ‘fears’ can just be left and never confronted so to speak. It also means that when something does come along where I do need to step out of my comfort zone – say I have to drive somewhere new/faraway – normally my first reaction is to feel anxious and think of all the things that could go wrong, catastrophize.
Another side effect of my ‘comfy zone’ is that I never seem to get anything unessential done, things are only sorted when they have to be, rather then when they should be and therefore normally done in a rush and without much thought. I believe this stems partly from my fear of making decisions. Final decisions can have OCD thoughts associated with them and so cause me anxiety, therefore I avoid them where I can, naughty, naughty I know.
I feel I do get overwhelmed quickly and it doesn’t take much for me to start spiralling out of control, it definitely makes achieving things tricky. It can also make me lazy, if I can pass a decision/activity on to someone else then normally I will, not good for OCD recovery I know and ultimately very frustrating for me.
So less of my moaning anyway, lets see if I can try and implement some solutions rather then posing endless problems.
My overall aims are to become more confident, to not let anxiety be the first thing to hit me when trying something new, to find solutions rather than problems and tackle my OCD head on and not avoid it.
- I think I might start with a list, by writing down all the things I have been putting off/avoiding and then finding a way to tackle them one at a time it will feel less overwhelming and more manageable.
- It would also help to see new experiences as exciting rather than scary, after all if we never do anything new how do we learn/progress?
- I should have more confidence and believe myself worthy of new experiences.
- I should try and get to the route cause of what is causing the anxiety and tackle it head on.
- Remember that uncertainty is a good thing, would we want to be certain about everything? There is a good exercise for dealing with uncertainty here.
- Looking towards end goals and achievements will help to spur me on.
- Accepting the worse case scenarios so I have nothing to fear.
Wow, so that’s quite a list. Even the list itself feels a bit overwhelming to be honest but by just trying to take one step at a time hopefully I will start to achieve more of my goals.
Hopefully it can help you too.
Stay Strong xxx