Sunday, January 11, 2015

Day 8 - How My Relationship to My Skin Has Been Perpetuating Dermatillomania


            This is a continuation from my last two blogs where I had been purifying the definition I hold of the word ‘skin’, in order to release that old definition and create a new one which is supportive. This new definition will be one which I can then truly live, to create a new living word, where my actions actually embody the word ‘skin’ as the new definition I have created for it.

What has been interesting throughout this writing process has been discovering how harsh and self-defaming my previously held definition of the word ‘skin’ had been, and how in living that definition, I had been putting myself down, stressing myself out, and completely justifying and perpetuating dermatillomania.

Below is the list of words I had previously connected to the word skin. I have been working my way down this list, firstly by simply forgiving having connected and defined the word ‘skin’ within and as these words (which are the purple sections), and then I used the tool of self-forgiveness to open up each word connection, to see the reasons behind which I had come to define my skin so harshly (the blue sections).
 
SKIN
Weak
Unstable
Exposed
Dirty
Scary
Sign of disease
Puss
Irritated
Shameful
Stretched
Dry
Unpredictable
Out of control
Foreign
Embarrassing
Infected
Flakey
Inconsistent
Youthful
Pretty
Toned
Sexy
Desire
I am currently working on the word ‘dry’:

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to connect the word ‘skin’ to the word ‘dry’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to define the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘dry’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to separate myself from the word ‘skin’ and from the word ‘dry’ by defining the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘dry’ in separation of me.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to react towards my skin when it is dry because it is uncomfortable and draws my attention to it which creates the conditions within which I will most likely pick and scratch at it. Within this,
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to be drawn into picking at and probing my skin when it feels dry, as if there Is something crucially wrong, instead of simply applying one of the creams or moisturizers that I have on hand for this very reason.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to ignore the fact that when my skin is dry it is usually because I have over washed it in an attempt to fix the damage I’ve done to it, as if I could simply ‘wash it all away’, or in an attempt to prevent or heal any infection because I have created openings in the skin which make it more prone to infection.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to deny the fact that my actions are usually the direct cause for my dry skin, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to not want to look at or take responsibility for my actions within and as dermatillomania by replacing ocd actions which do not consider my physical needs, with practical actions (such as applying a cream instead of picking). In other words, when I feel an urge to investigate my skin and start picking, to then take a step back and create some space and awareness for a choice to be considered with regards to what my next actions should be.
I commit myself to open my eyes completely to what I am doing in terms of my actions and the blame-shifting towards my skin, and the denial that this allows, so that when and as I participate in derma, I am doing so within complete awareness of what it is that I am participating in.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to connect the word ‘skin’ to the word ‘unpredictable’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to define the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘unpredictable’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to separate myself from the word ‘skin’ and from the word ‘unpredictable’ by defining the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘unpredictable’ in separation of me.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to hold an image of what perfect skin is or should be, and then compare that to my skin and react to the times when this comparison differs. Within this,
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to react when my skin changes for example with my menstrual cycle or changes in diet/rest/stress etc… wherein instead of understanding that my skin is undergoing its own process and processing I blame it for being inconsistent and thus triggering a derma session. Within this,
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to use my skin’s natural processing as an excuse to get mad and victimize myself thus justifying a picking session because that is what I use to escape facing the real reasons why I am feeling upset or uneasy etc… within myself.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear the unpredictable inner nature of myself, and to express that fear in skin-picking where I gain comfort and a feeling of control by picking at the skin as if there were something wrong with it and then feeling a great amount of relief when my skin once again heals, which I then interpret as a sign that I am healthy and ‘ok’ physically because I see my skin healing and getting better on its own.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to continuously harm myself because the healing process comforts me.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to look for comfort  in the proof that I am not dying or sick by watching my skin heal, and constantly fearing that it won’t heal due to an underlying fear of sickness and death.
When and as I see that I am submitting to skin picking to release the fear of death/disease/dying/being ill, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back into awareness by reminding myself that I don’t need to pick my skin to see if I am ill, I can rather do an overall self-scan of my body to see that everything is ok, and if it’s not, I will investigate the point and seek the necessary medical or other intervention if necessary.
 
When and as I see that I am finding relief in the fact that I see my skin healing on its own, I stop, and I breathe.  I bring myself back to self-trust by reminding myself that I don’t need to see physical proof of wounds healing to know that I am healthy and ‘ok’ physically, my entire body is like a monitoring system in terms of my energy levels, my ability to focus, my strength, my appetite, even my stool, etc… are all constant feedback mechanisms that I can monitor and adjust and track and even report to a professional if necessary to make adjustments and record feedback until everything is in balance as my body should be.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to connect the word ‘skin’ to ‘out of control’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to define the word ‘skin’ within ‘out of control’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to separate myself from the word ‘skin’ and from ‘out of control’  by defining the word ‘skin’ within ‘out of control’ in separation of myself.
I connect feeling out of control to my skin because sometimes my skin  reacts or changes and I don’t know the reason why, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to constantly fall into the tendency of thinking about the worst-case scenario that any change or fluctuation in my skin that I can’t explain is a sign of illness or disease and death.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear death and disease because they are things that I cannot and will never be able to control, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear having to face them, and having to face ‘who  I will be’ within them, because I feel I will not have control over myself and which parts of me are exposed, thus I see, realize and understand the importance of writing myself out to get to know the inner depths of myself, exposing myself to myself, within and as who I am and have become as the mind and ego.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear being out of control because fear there are parts of myself that would come out or be exposed that I don’t like or I don’t want to look at, that I fear others seeing or knowing about even though I myself am not certain about what they are, where they are and thus I cannot look at them and deal with them in any kind of effective way, instead it’s like being afraid of the dark: something could be there, but it could be the imagination, and the imagination usually tends to make a big deal out of nothing.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to keep parts of myself locked away and suppressed underneath a calm exterior, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to place a huge amount of importance upon controlling that ‘calm exterior’ so that I can control how I react and even how others react. Within the belief that I can control, or at least influence the situation or interaction I am participating within by controlling myself- not as a true and honest expression of myself, but as ‘who’ and ‘how’ I want to be portrayed, looked at and judged by others.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to want/need/desire to control everything and everyone around me, including myself, all to protect some hidden and feared aspect of myself that I don’t even have a clear awareness of.
I commit myself to peel back the layers of myself so as to slowly but surely look at and investigate the hidden parts of myself, forgive them and free myself from this paranoia.
When and as I see that I am participating in the fear of death and illness, I stop, and I breathe, I bring myself back to reality by reminding myself that my physical is 'in control' in that it is constantly ad continuously working towards maintaining its/my utmost potential of health and healing, and I can and will do everything in my power to assist and support it to do so.
 
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to connect the word ‘skin’ to the word ‘foreign’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to define the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘foreign’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to separate myself from the word ‘skin’ and from the word ‘foreign’ by defining the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘foreign’ in separation of myself.
I connect my skin to feeling ‘foreign’ because I am so completely separated from my physical body and my skin that I feel that it is not even ‘mine’ or a part of me. I feel as though I would never be as ‘dirty’ and ‘un-pure’ as my skin and physical body, I would only be ‘beautiful and perfect’ because I am able to imagine this in my mind. However, the fact is that my skin and body can and never will be as perfect as I am able to dream of and imagine because they exist in a reality of imperfections and consequence, wherein my skin and body are the accumulation of who and how I have treated them. On the other hand, the images in my mind have been created from the picture perfect airbrushed images I have been exposed to through Hollywood, magazines and television, which is the age old unrealistic standard that nothing can live up to in real life. It’s not real. But my skin is real, it is one of the most real things about me.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to feel or perceive my skin as foreign because I perceived it as ‘less than’ myself, in separation of myself, as if my skin were something other than a part of me. Within this
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to think/believe/perceive that there are foreign things in my skin that need to be removed or extracted because they don’t belong there because they are imperfections, whereas I in my mind have deemed myself as ‘perfect’ simply because I can imagine ‘perfect’ in my imagination and I make the assumption that if I were ‘perfect’ I would no longer feel the way I have the tendency of feeling within myself.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to view and perceive my skin as ‘foreign’, like a ‘foreign object’ that needs to be removed whenever there is something inconsistent because I don’t know what it is nor do I understand why it’s there and it bothers me and I begin to think something is wrong because I’m scared because it’s my own skin but yet I don’t understand it or know it or really feel a connection to it. Within this,
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing my relationship to my skin to thus far be one of neglect and abuse, wherein I will live only in my mind, and when things become too overwhelming I simply beat on my skin to feel better. It’s almost in a way like a punishment, which is a point that definitely needs to be looked into.
I commit myself to create an intimacy and self-acceptance with my skin, through writing self forgiveness, self-commitments, and self-corrective application. 
When and as I see my skin as 'disposable' and not a living part of me, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to my physical by reminding myself that my physical body it in fact the most important thing I am responsible for, as it is my vessel in this lifetime, and without it I would not exist. It is a part of me, and it is me as the living matter of myself. 
 
 
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to connect the word ‘skin’ to the word ‘embarrassing’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to define the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘embarrassing’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to separate myself from the word ‘skin’ and from the word ‘embarrassing’ by defining the word ‘skin’ within the word ‘embarrassing’ in separation of me.
I connect my skin to embarrassment because when and as I think people are looking at my skin I feel like they can see through the image/character/mask I put on and play when I am in public, which is confident, easy-going, and laid back – when in reality I feel at times insecure, scared, up-tight, stressful and anxious, which are the energetic experiences within which I tend to pick.  When someone looks at me and I think they might see  the fact that I have dermatillomania, it shatters the self-perception I have held of myself in one moment, and in that moment I feel small and vulnerable, as if the other person is now somehow above me with authority over how I feel within myself.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to feel embarrassed when people look at my skin, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to immediately think/believe that when people are looking at my skin they are seeing things I am trying to hide, such as signs (blemishes) of personality traits that I feel are embarrassing/bad/wrong.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to judge myself for being up-tight, stressed, insecure and anxious, and I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to judge others who demonstrate these traits. Within this,
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to judge ‘stressful, insecure, anxious and up-tight-ness’ as weaknesses that should be covered up hidden and suppressed.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear losing my self-definition of being confident, laid-back and easy-going when I think/believe/perceive that others can see through my ‘act’ as and how I present myself to the world, and within this,
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear being treated differently if people were to know ‘the real me’ as in all the dimensions of me including those that I hide/cover up/suppress, because if people treated me differently I would then feel different and not know how to act.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear change in my world because then my self-definition would be lost and I would feel lost because I have only defined myself based on what is known and seemingly ‘within my control’, and within this I know ‘who to be’ and ‘how to be’, but beyond this is only fear on the unknown.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear expansion and self-expansion beyond the reality that I know and feel ‘in-control’ of and within.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear losing control.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear losing myself.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to have placed a large degree of importance into my self-image, or the image that I present to the world outside myself wherein I want to be viewed a certain way and skin-picking is not a part of this presentation, and so I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to feel embarrassed when I think/believe/perceive that my skin-picking is exposed because I feel that my foundation has been shattered and de-stabilized.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to believe that another person can shatter my foundation instead of seeing/realizing and understanding that it is not the foundation of who I really am, it is rather the presentation I have developed based on the self-perception I have created of who and how I want to be perceived. Within this, I see that the ‘shattering’ experience is not being done unto me by another person, but is taking place entirely within my own mind as I believe myself to be losing a part of myself that I had considered quite important. Within this, I see and realize that I am demonstrating to myself that  my self-perception can be shattered at any moment because it is not something real, it is simply an image and idea I have conjured up for myself, of myself and in reality, it is not so important at all.
I commit myself to walk through this reality as I am – currently walking through dermatillomania, therefore currently blemished and flawed – but real and ready to face myself and express myself as I am in the moment, and not the perceived front I had believed I needed to live behind.
When and as I see myself reacting in embarrassment towards my skin, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to Who I Really Am by reminding myself that the image I fear losing is not an important or integral part of me. I see, realize and understand that it is necessary to present ourselves well in this society but that the real substance and matter of myself is not something that can be shattered nor lost, but is here with me in ever breath.
 
I will continue re-defining the word ‘skin’ in my next blog. Until then, check out this video on re-defining words: From Redefining Words to Living Words.
 Self-Study with support, learn to respect you and others, learn how to stop mind chatter, learn how to forgive so effectively that you actually change forever, learn how to stop and change the automatic thoughts that run your life. Sign up for the free course at this link: DIPLITE, try it for yourself . 
 
 
 

2 comments:

  1. You have such an interesting blog. Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed reading your posts. All the best for your future blogging journey.

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