Friday, August 21, 2015

Day 24 OCD/Dermatillomania: How to Prevent the Tension Build Up

            In my last blog I discussed a way in which I have learned to physically discharge the built up tension that leads me to submit to OCD compulsions namely, compulsive skin picking, but also other OCD tendencies. I described what this feeling was, what it feels like, and how to access it through being stable and relaxed, which brings it out of suppression and into the body where it can be experienced and breathed through. This has assisted me to noticeably lower my anxiety levels, and to do regular ‘self-checks’, which support me with remaining present and aware, instead of getting drawn into OCD possession-like states of mind.

            I mentioned in the blog that this was a very useful practice, and that it has made a difference in my life, but that the experience itself is so unpleasant as it takes place, that It cannot be a stand-alone solution. The experience is extremely uncomfortable and I find myself still trying to suppress it and avoid it when I am not completely ‘here’ at times when I am busy or distracted with daily tasks and responsibilities. I will continue to discharge the energy this way, but the fact that it is only a partial solution is why I will now work on not building up this experience for myself in the first place.

            I will be doing this by identifying what it is throughout the day that I react to in stress/anxiety/fear/irritation/agitation/anger. These reactions hit me in jolts and seem to remain within me instead of being processed out and diffused over time. For me, as an OCD/derma sufferer, it remains inside and builds up, causing me to feel tense, anxious and wound up most all of the time. What I will do is walk through my day, look at the triggers, and release them with self-forgiveness, self-commitments, and self-corrective application.


I wake up, several thoughts get me out of bed:

“I need to go to work”

“I can’t be late for work”

“What do I need to do to be as fast as possible so I can get to work on time”

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to wake up thinking “I need to go to work”.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to connect emotional stress, anxiousness, and a ‘rushed’ energy to the thoughts that I wake up with in the morning of “I need to get to work”, “I can’t be late for work”, and “what do I need to do to be as fast as possible to get to work on time”.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to think, believe or perceive that if I don’t rush, or go as fast as possible, that I will be late for work.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing stress, anxiety, and rushed-ness to exist within and as me.

When and as I see that I am going into stress, anxiety, and rushed-ness in relation to the fear of being late for work, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to comfort within myself by reminding myself that I set my alarm to give me an adequate amount of time to prepare, and that I make it to work on time every single morning, unless there is an unforeseen circumstance which prevents me, in which case I will call in and explain, which is as much as I can do.

I commit myself to push myself to walk through my morning routine within/as self-direction, comfort and ease, as I move from one task to the next with common sense,  instead of stress, anxiety and rushed-ness within the paranoia of being late/developing a bad reputation/being fired.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to terrorize myself with thoughts that if I am late for work, my boss and managers will be angry, my colleagues will judge me, and I will develop a bad and undependable reputation, and I will lose my job and fall into debt, and not get a good reference from which to get another good job.

When and as I see that I am imagining pretend consequences of scenarios where I am late for work, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to common sense by reminding myself that I am rarely late because I manage myself and my time in such a way to prepare myself to get to work on time, that this job is not the only way to support myself in this world, that I can live in such a way to avoid large debt, that I already have enough references for work and even if I didn’t, I could still get a job and make new references, and with the skills I am developing, namely discipline, perseverance and consistency, I know I ca be successful at most jobs I can get.

I commit myself to let go of my past self-definitions created by memories of a not too distant past where I  didn’t have the essential life skills I am now developing, I wasn’t able to hold down a job mostly due to my OCD, I was accumulating debt, and I was not in control of most elements in my life.

I commit myself to talk myself down from terrorizing myself with pretend doomsday scenarios that are blown out of proportion, and to instead have a self-honest look at the actual reality of the my life situation..

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to think of myself as a bad and undependable person.

I commit myself to continue to work towards being and becoming more disciplined, consistent and organized at home, because I then bring these habits into everything that I do, and with these skills I will, over time, become someone I can depend on and therefor will be dependable for others.

I commit myself to continue learning how to incorporate living actions of self-acceptance and self-care into my daily life and routine.

I commit myself to stop feeding and following the self-depreciating and self-judgmental thoughts that ‘I am not good enough’, or ‘I can’t be depended on’, because I know this is self-sabotage, and that I am walking a process of self-acceptance and self-worth,  teaching myself how to be dependable for me, through self-application and pushing myself towards becoming consistent and self-directed.

When and as I catch myself thinking negatively about myself as ‘who I am as a person/employee’ in judgmental and self-depreciating ways, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to self-worth by reminding myself that this way of thinking is disempowering and is an avoidance mechanism within which I can find the justification and excuse to not change, not push myself, not challenge my current way of being, and to continue with OCD.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to sabotage my self-trust, within and through picking my skin instead of directing myself to complete that tasks I set out for myself, tasks which I put in place to support myself to be organized and on time, such as preparing food/clothes the night before, taking a shower, and reading/writing myself out, and then going to bed on time.

When and as I see that I am picking my skin instead of accomplishing constructive, self-supportive tasks, I stop, and I breathe, I bring myself back to self-love and self-support by pushing myself to breathe through the experience instead of continuing on picking, within the understanding that relief or ‘end point’/completion experience will not come through picking, but will be made real through actually applying the discipline to move through daily tasks/obligations/responsibilities, thus developing the self-trust required to be able to depend on myself that I will not create anxious, stressful scenarios for myself to live out and remain in the anxiety disorder mind.

I commit myself to continue to push myself to replace OCD/picking with constructive tasks that serve to support me to release myself from the disorder.

I commit myself to NOT judge myself when I fall, but to constantly and continuously pick myself up and try again, each and every time until it is manifest.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to fear that if I have more time in the morning, I will pick my skin.

When and as I see I have spare time in the morning, creating the desire to act out OCD impulses, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to self-support and self-stability through self-movement and self-direction, within the understanding of the choice that stands in front of me: to pick, or not to pick. I choose not to pick, and to walk through and bear he accumulated consequences of this choice until I have processed it all and it is done.

I commit myself to bear the burden I have created for myself until it is processed, figured out, understood, seen, re-directed and re-scripted.

I commit myself to walk through the self-created consequences of having lived with and depended on OCD for so many years, because I see, realize and understand that there is no other way.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to think/believe that if I don’t feel rushed, I will not move effectively and will pick my skin.

When and as I see that I am creating the feeling of ‘rushed’ as a way to avoid facing and walking through what I’m really feeling, I stop, and I breathe. I bring myself back to presence, awareness and self-movement with breath, by reminding myself that I choose not to live a life of avoidance, and that I have it in me to face that which lies beneath the surface, no matter how unpleasant it is, because I have already proven it to myself that I can do it, it’s just a matter of continuing to do it over and over, until it is done.

I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to feel physically anxious and stressed if I am not rushing and moving fast within the belief that I will not get to work on time, instead of seeing, realizing and understanding that the anxious, stressful rushed energy is not valid, and it’s not what’s moving me. I am moving me, and the emotional experiences of anxiety, stress, and rushed-ness are only in my mind, and are all a part of the disorder.

When and as I see that I am feeling anxious and stressed  when I should be feeling calm and relaxed, I stop, and I breathe. I allow myself to feel the stress and anxiety without attaching any values to it, but to accept it and understand it, to breathe through it, to speak at least one self-forgiveness statement, and to push myself to move myself regardless.

I commit myself to learn how to effectively walk through the OCD mind reactions, buy trial and error, writing myself out, and practical application of what I script for myself through self-introspection and understanding.
Link to the course I am taking to assist and support myself through this: DIP Lite

Monday, August 17, 2015

Day 23: OCD/Dermatillomania - How to Discharge the Built Up Tension

I recently made a video regardingthis process I am walking with OCD and dermatillomania. In it I talked about how it feels to stop this disorder, because I have had now many periods of time where I not only stopped acting out the compulsions, but also stopped for moments, the internal experience of the disorder. It’s interesting, because in the past when I have thought of OCD and dermatillomania, I have mostly thought about the part of it that I could see, which is the actions and behaviours, like picking my skin for example, which is the most obvious and apparent symptom in my case. What I have come to realize over time is that, these could actually be only the symptoms (and thus, the tip of the iceberg), of what is really going on inside of self.

As I took measures to stop picking my skin, what I noticed (and continue to notice) is that there is a very prevalent and over-powering internal experience that exists and takes place within self. This experience is often suppressed and avoided and is thus given the opportunity to grow, build and accumulate within self, wherein one actually loses control and is in fact overpowered by the need/desire to act out the compulsions.

I have developed and thought up many tricks and tips and coping mechanisms to deal with , avoid and navigate through obsessive compulsions (the actions/acting out), but have only recently had the courage, strength and self-will to face what was going on inside of me. What I have found is that I generally exist within varying degrees of anxiety. If I wake up in the morning anxiety-free, I can see the triggers happen and I can notice the anxiety kick in and start building.

I can notice and observe all of this because of the self-awareness and internal slowing down I have developed through walking the Desteni Process. I can notice and observe myself feeling ‘normal’, light, and ‘in control’ when I wake up. But after the first couple of triggers, I feel a sort of ‘dirtiness’, along with an anxious kind of ‘rushed’ feeling as I am getting ready for work or for my day. As the day progresses, like clockwork and this seemingly never-ending pattern that I have created over time, I will be triggered over and over. But instead of smoothly processing little moments of worry, impatience, stress, fear etc… these moments remain inside of me and build up in pockets, as if I were full of bubbles or internal pimples that I am afraid to touch, go near, or burst for fear of what putrid contents may be inside.

However, recently I have built myself up enough to be able to do just that. I go near the pockets, and I release them – without acting out a compulsion (which I have seen, does not release them in the same way as facing them AT ALL, but I will explain this later). What I do is look at my internal state, I see the anxiety, tightness, and all of the negative stuff that is going on. But instead of feeding all of this through going into the OCD mind of thinking, imagining, worrying and needlessly attaching the negative emotions to the thoughts thus blowing everything out of proportion – I instead stay present, remain physical and practice and use common sense.

So once I look at myself and look at whatever situation I am in and determine that there is no immediate threat, I then will go to bring myself into a state of relaxation. I do this through focusing on my breath, through consciously letting go of what I had been holding onto, and I breathe and let go, breathe and let go – because it doesn’t make sense, I don’t have to be anxious. I speak common sense and I stay practical (what am I in the middle of doing, what are my next steps etc….).

Unfortunately, this does absolutely NOT bring peace at all, which I surprisingly found out through persistently trying to experience myself as relaxed. What happens is that the bubbles now have to burst, because they have nothing holding them in place and holding them together – there is nothing suppressing them – and they ‘burst’, which is really what it feels like.

What do the contents feel like? I have a hard time describing what explodes inside of me and washes over my body in these moments. Physically, I am taken aback. My muscles react in some minor spasms in the abs and groin area. I have started to even brace myself when I know I am going to be doing this, but that makes the physical reaction worse somehow in that it seems to linger longer when I am tense. I have to be physically relaxed and accept it all, embrace it almost, but it is very difficult. It comes in waves, it lasts a long time, and in the end, there always feels like there’s some left and it’s not completely gone.

If I could define the experience in words, it would be ‘horrible’, ‘incredibly uncomfortable’, ‘upsetting’, ‘scary’, and the energy itself would be a mix of anxiety, anger and irritability. So, what I have seen here is that I am able to ‘discharge’ the build-up that is a large component of the disorder, which is really amazing, and will assist and support with stopping the behaviours as well. Unfortunately, this is not a complete solution, because as I’ve said, the buildup starts in the morning, and continues throughout the day, therefore, that ‘discharges’ have to happen all day long. They are extremely unpleasant, and they are more difficult to do while focusing at work, although with practice I have improved.

I will discuss and start walking my plan to prevent the build-ups I the first place, starting with my next blog.