Monday, November 28, 2016

Day 42 - OCD and the Truth of Me




            When I was a teenager I started to experience REAL problems, meaning, problems with real life consequences., such as health, legal and financial problems. This was placed on top of the usual teen stuff like relationship, friendship, family and school problems. My life felt like it was full of problems and I was not comfortable discussing them with anyone, so I would internalize them and think about them on my own. Unfortunately, I had not developed effective problem solving skills, and I felt powerless in the face of  and crushed by my problems. 
          This led to the problems consuming me, wherein I became melancholy and isolated, and began seeking escape through OCD, substances and relationships, and other such compromising and risky behaviour. I find that within interacting with others with OCD, this mind-set of creating a world crushed by problems was prevalent. And what I noticed within myself, was that so long as I had this 'bad situation', all my escapes, including OCD, were easily justifiable. 

          It 'made sense' to me to try to constantly try to get the ‘high’ or the 'numbing' effect to take me away from the lows that this way of thinking can really exaggerate. This is where I can see a time in my life where I could have become empowered, became instead the solidification of my self-limiting and problem-oriented way of thinking, doing and being. Despite my exterior presentation, a self-defeating problem-oriented way of thinking was the real truth of me.

          Into my young -adult life, my problems (my bills, my debt, my relationship issues, the effects of OCD, not being able to keep a job, not knowing what I am going to do with my life, difficulty making friends, my messy house, my lack of discipline to do basic things, the poor quality of food, the problems in the world etc etc etc)  had become my comfort. Self-pity and helplessness became safe, familiar places where I never really had to face who and how I had become. 

          I can see now, looking back, that despite hating the life I had created and wanting change, I was actually getting something I liked out of obsessing about my problems. It was comfortable, familiar, and I always had an excuse handy for why I just can't change. Changing was scary and difficult,  terrifying and uncomfortable. Pushing myself to really change was totally outside of the comfort zone I had created for myself in my life.

             Thinking about my problems would create an emotional experience in me, chemically induced in my brain, a chemical pattern I could dose myself with daily, thus creating a kind of addiction to a way of thinking. What I also noticed was that with pushing myself to break out of the internal isolation and open up more to people in my world, this problem oriented thinking would come again out in moments of vulnerability. I would speak about my problems in order to seek support to change, but what I found was, the more others would try to help and push me, the more I felt defensive and would argue or make excuses and justifications for myself.  This is what can be called ‘arguing for my limitations’.

            This is a pretty tricky cycle, because I would  remain isolated and try to figure out solutions alone with myself, there was no one to be accountable to. I realized I had not developed a sense of self-accountability, and it was easy to get away with not really seeing things through when they got tough. But then, when I would seek support outside myself, I would argue for my limitations out of fear of really having to go for it for real, because now there was someone that could call me out when I produced no visible evidence of having walked any kind of change. Looking back, I can see these were signs that I was still holding on to a problem-oriented mindset.

          This mindset explains some of the friction and conflict within me as I physically did the things I set out to do. I had not yet fully aligned my way of thinking with my actions in the physical world. It was time for not only the external change of 'doing', but also to look at the internal, seeing my mind and how it functions within me. I saw that it was time to step outside my comfort-zone and become solution-oriented.


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            So I began to venture into the scary unknown of really looking at solutions for real. Really walking my change and stopping myself when I would start to make excuses such as stating what the problems are and why I cannot move on a certain point. I am still working on this, as it will take some time to fully develop and strengthen to become  quality that is substantiated and evident in my life and living. But even over a small period of months, I have noticed the friction dissipate, the conflict drop, and cool and clear interactions with others start to come through.

            It’s cool when relationships and interactions with others are not used by one’s mind to perpetuate the comfort zone by arguing for one's limitations. Without awareness, you can end up resenting and blaming others in your life for showing you the limits of your comfort zone due to the reactions it causes.  When it was pointed out to me where I still tend to speak from this problem oriented mindset, I experienced resistance towards hearing it, but often times, when what is seen and spoken by another that causes a reaction (defensive, hurt or resistant), it means that there is a truth to it that self does not want to look at or see. 

         Being solution oriented, for me, was not this wonderful, positive experience. It was scary, raw, and humbling. It exposed my vulnerabilities, and it showed me where I was still weak or underdeveloped. But when I could actually listen to another and see through my reactions, I was able to plant a seed of change within myself. 

          I have had to nurture and grow this seed through some painful moments, but ever since I have been making this self-directed effort, I have made more progress than in the past in terms of getting things in my life together and get them moving. Moving through the problems and finding gifts of self-development and expansion all along the way.  There is still a long way to go, but with progress, the journey is a little more enjoyable, cool things start to develop, and life beyond the comfort zone becomes a place of abundance and opportunities to grow.

          It's interesting that as the problems melt away, and solutions and forward motion begin the manifest, there remains very little reason or justification to OCD. I see this as a serious step towards healing self and managing this disorder, because it diffuses and disarms it. It leaves one wondering, what is the point?



           To take the first step in supporting YOURSELF, you can check out the following links that led me to take the first steps toward healing, and continue to support me to this day:
 
SOUL –  The School of Ultimate Living is an online community of people interested in
discovering and developing their utmost potential
eqafe.com – Invest in a wide range of Interviews and Support yourself to Self Perfection
Journey To Life Blogs – Read the blogs from those walking the 7 year journey to life.
Self and Living – Practical Living Support To Live to Your Utmost Potential
DIP Lite – Free Online Course to get you started with learning the Tools of Self Support
DIP PRO -A Desteni Course for those Ready to Walk the Journey of a Lifetime


Saturday, November 19, 2016

Day 41- OCD and the Key to Me




Ever since I realized I had OCD I have slowly been coming to grips with what it means to have a mental disorder. For a very long time I found myself victimizing myself as if I had this separate entity in my life, something separate from me that had been imposed on me, something I was powerless towards and imprisoned by. And most of the time this is what it feels like, so this perspective of my life has been very easy to justify and validate.

Recently, I have been learning more about what it means to be and become ‘self-responsible’, which means, seeing realizing and understanding that I am responsible for everything in my life, my life is my own creation and as creator, I am also responsible for every aspect of it. Many people will fight an argue this is not so due to genetics, environment, upbringing and life experiences, and this is another perspective that is very easy to justify, validate and make real. But if you consider the consequences of this, you will see that this perspective directly takes one’s personal power away, and places it within outside sources, such as genetics, environment, upbringing and life experience.

In this way, self-responsibility can seem like a tough pill to swallow, I mean, it’s not my fault I was born with a genetic disorder and into an environment that was not equipped to teach me how to learn to cope with it, right? This is true; it is not my fault, it is no one’s fault, there is in fact: no one to blame. So where this then leaves me is squarely in a position of responsibility, one where I have to step up and take back control if I want to live a life that is in any way worth living.

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If I look back at how I have lived, I can see that my quality of life has been drastically reduced due to the effects of OCD. It effects everything I do. It is not just actively a part of my life when I am caught in a possessed state where I am acting out the compulsive behaviours. Upon consistent self-introspection, I have realized that all of me, my thought patterns, my reactions to things, the way I feel when I experience myself walking through my day, is in fact obsessive compulsive. However, what is also apparent, is that there is something else, something MORE to me then just this.

There has always been a part of me that is ‘suffering’ in a way. A part that can clearly see that this is not what life should be like. There is and has been a part in me that has stood up time and time again, fighting for me and my life, wanting more, not feeling satisfied, seeing potential, but not knowing how to change or get there. This is actually huge.

What this means is that, yes, I have OCD in this life. This is the hand I was dealt and it is my deal, a part of myself that I have to work through. But it is not all of me, it is not entirely Who I Am. There is something else and something more. I have committed myself to push to make this part of me that is ‘something more’ the biggest part. Until now, I have functioned with this disorder my entire life, but  have always fought and pushed myself because I had to. I had to make money to survive, so I had to have a job and work. I have to interact with others, so I have to have social relationships, function within a family, a relationship, groups at school or at work. I have forced myself to live for all these reasons, but have I ever really pushed, fought, and forced myself to live for ME?

This is so important, because there is a part in all of us that is worth fighting for, pushing for, living for. It is the most important starting point one can have for all decisions and life choices. It is literally the greatest purpose from which one can source the most personal power, authority and ability to do whatever is necessary to realize one’s personal potential.

This is where my process is moving: where I take steps, make moves in my life, and practice being the Living Change for ME. This means, really taking the time and effort to get to know me, learn to understand the intricacies of my mind and thinking, really commit to give myself that time and dedication, because really, who else is going to do that for me? Even if there were someone willing to take this on, the truth is that, no one can do this for me. This is something that only self can give to self, and this is the greatest gift we can give ourselves in this life.

The focus of this blog will continue to be my process of walking out of OCD and into Life for real, as the process I have walked so far has led me to the realization that self-responsibility truly is the key, but both the SELF annnnd the responsibility must be taken into consideration. If you also have this disorder, please walk this process with me. You can check out my previous blogs, as well as my other blog Kim’s Journey to Life,(please go to the archive and look for the OCD related blogs, of which there are MANY) and my Youtube channel.

Thank you.
To take the first step in supporting YOURSELF, you can check out the following links that led me to take the first steps toward healing, and continue to support me to this day:
SOUL –  The School of Ultimate Living is an online community of people interested in
discovering and developing their utmost potential
eqafe.com – Invest in a wide range of Interviews and Support yourself to Self Perfection
Journey To Life Blogs – Read the blogs from those walking the 7 year journey to life.
Self and Living – Practical Living Support To Live to Your Utmost Potential
DIP Lite – Free Online Course to get you started with learning the Tools of Self Support
DIP PRO -A Desteni Course for those Ready to Walk the Journey of a Lifetime