In my last blog, I discussed how I used some writing tools to support myself to ‘get my life together’, and how I had hoped that all of the work that I was doing would somehow diminish the OCD- I held the belief that OCD was a coping mechanism- that it helps me cope with the stresses, anxiety, fear and anger that I experience in my life-but what happened when I began to take responsibility myself, and started to manage and direct all of these aspect of my life that were once ‘out of control’?
What happened was the exact opposite of what I was expecting: Everything felt worse! My internal experience related to OCD had become more intense and even more obvious. I now had nothing left to blame it on, and nothing else to hide it within. Now I am staring it straight in the face. I do not have OCD; OCD has me.
Before I finished my degree, school was a big justification for picking. I would have big term papers and assignments due, and I would place a huge amount of importance on doing well on each assignment. It was very difficult.
I was always like “well, I have this huge assignment due, I can’t handle the pressure, I just need to take the edge off, I’ll stop when school is done,” and I would pick. The only problem was that the picking would get in the way of the assignments. I wouldn’t be able to focus, I would sneak off to the bathroom or I would zone out, I would use OCD to procrastinate and I would eventually have to rush and try to do finish the assignment by the deadline. This was creating stress and anxiety, and I was always handing in work that was less-than what I was capable of, creating anger and guilt towards myself, because I knew I could do better, but I consistently chose OCD. I would really set my mind on getting through school and doing well, but I was always left feeling like I had no control over my efforts, and nothing was ever working out.
I thought once school was over, the anxiety and stress would diminish, and so would the desire to indulge in my compulsive behavior. However, school is now over, and I now feel the same way I did about those huge assignments, only it’s projected on to any little tasks I have placed importance on.
For example, writing a blog, or going to yoga (interesting that it’s now focused on things I enjoy doing, whereas before these were things I had no reaction to). What I have seen and shown myself is that I can turn any situation, into something that causes me to feel stressed out and anxious about within myself, and then use OCD to feel better. The whole time, I thought I just couldn’t get it together, and that because I was such a fuck up, I needed OCD to cope. However now what I see more clearly, is that if I weren’t ‘a fuckup’ creating a chaotic life that I have no control over, then I would have no excuse to pick my skin.
And this is the biggest realization I have had so far: I subconsciously sabotage myself in order to create things like anxiety and chaos in my life, in order to justify skin-picking. I turn normal daily tasks into overwhelming burdens (getting to work on time, getting out of the house, taking a shower, getting dressed, etc…) by overly mind-processing every little thing and not just actually, physically moving myself to start the task, and see it through.This irrational, cyclical logic is indicative of the subconscious mind manipulation tactics that keeps my addiction going.
Once I started getting my life together and actually being able to get through the day in a more reasonable manner, I saw that I don’t use skin-picking to cope with life…I WANT to pick my skin. I WANT to keep the addiction going. Yes, it ruins everything and has complete control over me, but there’s something about it that gives me something that I don’t want to give up. It feeds my addictions to stress, anxiety, worry, escape, victimization, comfort, hiding, and so much more, and I don’t genuinely want to stop.
So, all in all, this is how my obsessive compulsive disorder came to stare me in the face, and how I have nowhere left to run, and why I am now taking it on in my blogs. I will in my next blog, use the tool of self forgiveness to look a little more deeply at what it is that OCD gives me, that I would give up actually living and expressing myself for real, in order to keep the addiction going.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear writing about my process with OCD.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to feel ashamed about who I am within ocd and thus, with sharing my process with ocd.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to judge myself for having created and manifested OCD within me, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to judge dermatillomania as the worst kind of ocd/addiction.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to judge myself for picking my skin and:
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to think/believe/perceive there is no other way to cope with life and feel normal than to continue this way, as I have obviously seen and proven that this is NOT any kind of solution to my internal experience, and the only path left is to face myself within dermatillomania.
I commit myself to walk the process of understanding, revealing and exposing myself to myself in terms of who I am and who I have become within/as dermatillomania.
I commit myself to stop judging myself for having ocd/dermatillomania, or for it having me.
I commit myself to stand and breathe through the fear of stopping dermatillomania, and I commit myself to assist and support myself through writing self-forgiveness, self-commitments and self-corrective application as I do so.
When and as I feel the fear/shame/embarrassment arise within me connected to thoughts of writing about myself/my experience/my mind in relation to dermatillomania/ocd/etc… I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to breath, and to standing up within myself by reminding myself only I can judge myself, diminish myself, and humiliate myself in my mind and I will not accept and allow myself to stop myself from writing myself out, no matter what my mind throws at me. I see, realize and understand that addiction will use any means necessary to continue, and I will not accept/allow myself to be less than addiction. I humbly stand equal to it and one with it so that I can change as it to a living application that supports and honours myself as life in every moment.
When and as I see that I am judging myself for picking my skin/writing about picking my skin, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to self-acceptance by reminding myself that I am not perfect, this is a process, and any form of self-judgment only compounds the impacts of the disorder, and will not only lengthen the process I’ll have to walk, but will also make it harder. I remind myself to walk this process within and as complete self-acceptance, within the understanding that only with unconditional self-acceptance can I bring about real self-change.