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  • #27960
    wannabefree
    Participant

      Good evening dear friends.

      Well, We’ve made it to Friday, hopefully, like me you do not have to get up too early tomorrow., With it being a Saturday..

      I’ve  just had a thought… Maybe we should be able to get hold of tee shirts with the OCDAction logo on…

      Anyway, tonight’s offering is a thought around the often quoted ‘Serenity prayer’.

      Even without a faith, we can try to have the Serenity to Accept the things we cannot change, the Courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Very important that last bit… Wisdom. We are simply not equipped to change things we cannot change. On my hat I have badges that state; ‘I play the organ’, And ‘What’s your super power?’ We all have them, that thing that we find ourselves uniquely naturally good at. No one else can truly know what our ‘gifts’ are. But exploring them is exciting, and fun. Nothing is meant to be stressed beyond it’s capability. In scientific tests, machines can be made twice as strong as they need to be. It is detrimental to run them at full load for long.

      In the human body, Our legs are strong enough to lift another person’s weight on top of our own physically. And yet, we normally only need to carry the shopping. Others need to carry themselves sometimes… Some of them are even strong enough to carry us anyway. If we are always ‘carrying’ others, we will be too exhausted to do our own unique abilities. It simply isn’t fair.

      I need to stand back and let others do what I cannot do, but they in their turn can do.

      For next week, Google the ‘Footprints’ tale. I am a person of faith, but the philosophy will work for anyone.

      That’s it, til next Friday evening, at about 6pm.

      #27980
      wannabefree
      Participant
      Participant

        Hi Friends. I’m running a tiny bit late tonight.

        “>That ‘Footprints’ thing is quite a leveller isn’t it?

        What does it have to do with having OCD?  Well, OCD at it’s worst, completely takes over our lives doesn’t it? Every waking moment, Almost as if everybody else around us is more valuable to the world than we ourselves are.  In a care home, the slightest tummy upset would have an inquest, the member of staff literally bedevilled alive, shunned, shamed, almost to the point of attempting suicide…

        I know, it happened to me more than once… They nearly cost me my very life… Fortunately, I managed to go off sick, then retire due to ill-health.

        Incidentally, That care home went out of business, the staff team disintegrated, destroyed itself. I’m happily alive, and now in recovery with OCD. The medicines help me live an almost normal life now. We are on this journey…

        Is that door locked? Well Yes, cos I’m so over-conscientious, I will have locked it anyway… I really don’t need to check it again, After all, the more I check, the stronger the urge to check becomes… That is my OCD.

        In a supermarket, everything goes through the tills to pay. Is anything really ever all that clean?

        It never has been… That’s right. It never has been… And yet… Any sign of illness, people would sue, the name of the establishment dragged through the media, their reputation totally ruined…

        Wait a minute… When was the last time that actually happened?

        So don’t worry about anything being perfectly clean either before, or after we have touched it…

        So… Let’s leave it all to God, Whatever you conceive him to be.

        Check out ‘Desiderata’, by Les Crane, on Youtube. It’s really good.

        Until next Friday 18 August at about 6pm, right here.

        Wannabe

        #28229
        wannabefree
        Participant
        Participant

          Friday the 25th!

          This is rapidly becoming the six thirty club!!!

          1. <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>Good old Les Crane…</span></span></p>

          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>During a recent visit accompanying a relative to hospital, it was nice to see the absence of those awful gel dispensers. Not many people were wearing face masks… We need to build up our natural resistance again… That is vital, if we are to survive through next winter.</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>At home, I inadvertently ate some dodgy home-made pasta and that made me vomit… No one else, just me. It was several days old, so was almost certainly past it’s use by date.</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>I am fine today, my body has protected itself. </span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”> I went to a country park today, sat on various chairs etc. Even logs… Clean? I really don’t know, but I enjoyed a ham salad lunch, with cheese. I then licked my fingers clean, and wiped them dry on my jeans. Some food is easier to eat with fingers! It co operates better!</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>I will only have washed my hands after using a loo… No other time… I didn’t actually touch any animals, due to displayed signs warning of possible biting!</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>Iron gates… We went through a few, opening and closing as we went. I have no antibacterial gel on my person or in my bag. It isn’t necessary to bump off 99.9% of germs, cos some of them are gonna be good for us, as we are organic creatures too. </span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>The shone gently through the treetops high above us, the wind changing sound as it passed through different varieties of tree.</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>What about the pillow on my bed? We don’t stop to consider what may, or may not be there… </span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>I do remember a vacuum cleaner salesman demonstrating on a mattress… But how much of that ‘dust’ was already in the machine, was never discussed. I don’t care how effective the overpriced vacuum cleaner was supposed to be, I couldn’t have got the finance anyway. (Just tell them you are shortly to become unemployed, And you’ll be amazed how quickly they can pack everything away, and leave!) </span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”> Basically Nothing is ever totally clean… Even the air we breathe is already contaminated (Bontaminated) in some minor way.</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>But it serves to actually, through natural processes, strengthen our bodily systems, totally naturally. Good, Isn’t it!?</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>Finally for this one; A question for next Friday…</span></span></p>
          <p class=”western”><span style=”font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>Where does our OCD actually come from? </span></span></p>

          #28230
          wannabefree
          Participant
          Participant

            I’m sorry friends, I copied and pasted it from another document, then took too long to edit it!!!

            It should read as follows;

            Friday the 25th!

            Good old Les Crane…

            During a recent visit accompanying a relative to hospital, it was nice to see the absence of those awful gel dispensers. Not many people were wearing face masks… We need to build up our natural resistance again… That is vital, if we are to survive through next winter.

            Later in the week, whilst At home, I inadvertently ate some dodgy home-made pasta and that made me vomit… No one else, just me. It was several days old, so was almost certainly past it’s use by date.

            I am fine now, my body has protected itself and used its’ natural resistance to do so.

            I went to a country park recently, and sat on various chairs etc. Even logs… Clean? I really don’t know, but I enjoyed a ham salad lunch, with cheese. I then licked my fingers clean, and wiped them dry on my jeans. Some food is easier to eat with fingers! It co operates better!

            I will only have washed my hands after using a loo… No other time… I didn’t actually touch any animals, due to displayed signs warning of possible biting!

            Iron gates… We went through a few, opening and closing as we went. I have no antibacterial gel on my person or in my bag. It isn’t necessary to bump off 99.9% of germs, cos some of them are gonna be good for us, as we are organic creatures too. The sun shone gently through the treetops high above us, the wind changing sound as it passed through different varieties of tree. And  What about the pillow on my bed? We don’t all stop to consider what may, or may not be there…

            I do remember a vacuum cleaner salesman demonstrating on a mattress… But how much of that ‘dust’ was already in the machine, was never discussed. I don’t care how effective the overpriced vacuum cleaner was supposed to be, I couldn’t have got the finance anyway. (Just tell them you are shortly to become unemployed, And you’ll be amazed how quickly they can pack everything away, and leave!)

            Basically, Nothing is ever totally clean… Even the air we breathe is already contaminated (Bontaminated) in some minor way, But it serves to actually, through natural processes, strengthen our bodily systems, totally naturally. Good, Isn’t it!?

            Finally for this one; A question for next Friday… Hopefully before 7pm!

            Where does our OCD actually come from?

            Wannabe

             

             

             

             

            #28348
            wannabefree
            Participant
            Participant

              Hi friends…

              Okay then, Where does our ocd come from? We’ll, It isn’t helped by growing up seeking perfection for gratification. Perfection in life is totally unattainable, and totally dependant on approval from others, who may themselves never be totally satisfied  with us anyway. We can never be 100% good enough for everyone… In school, I  couldn’t be brilliant at all the subjects… There would always be at least maybe 2 teachers who would be bitterly disappointed with me, regardless of the amount of effort I  put in.. No one is ever really good at everything… If we were, then other people wouldn’t be able to help us through life… And thus, we them…

              We all have a purpose in this world.

              We pass through it, and leave our fingerprints on everything and everyone we ever meet… As did everyone before us. So it is with everything. We all have our place.

              So… Do you rely on others having a good opinion of you?

              Do you unconsciously place your self worth below that of others around you?

              The thing is that, living like that makes us very vulnerable to other people’s whims. They can manipulate us, often to inflate their own poor self image. This is bullying…

              It doesn’t work for them of course,  but it can totally ruin our lives.

              We have to stop relying on other people’s opinion of us.

              They are often wrong… They can deliberately put us down, destroying our self-esteem. Once that is gone, it is incredibly difficult to get it back again, especially if we are sensitive.

              Sensitivity is not a weakness,  it is an incredible gift in the right circumstances.  There are occupations that can only be handled  by sensitive people. It is a virtue, and enables incredible achievements to be reached

              People come in all shapes and sizes… And just as well..  Life would be boring otherwise, Wouldn’t it?

              Even toddlers can say some pretty amazing things. Everyone has a right to be heard, we all have something to contribute to the world. Something unique to ourselves .

              So… Let’s all share together on these forums. They are here for us, and each of us has our own unique take on the experience of dealing with ocd etc in our daily lives.

              Until next Friday 8 September then, Same sort of time…

              Wannabe

              #28396
              wannabefree
              Participant
              Participant

                Hi friends.

                Well… Here we are… We’ve actually made it through another week. Some of us may have been having a struggle at work, whilst others have been on holiday, hopefully somewhere nice. We have each taken breath after breath of air, hopefully without feeling guilty for doing so.

                This leads me onto tonight’s blog.

                Permission… Do we actually need to have it in order to function in today’s world? Everything we do seems to be governed by rules and regulations… Everything…

                And yet… Do we really need another’s permission to be ourselves? Does anyone else hold that right over us as individuals?

                This week I picked up a headless tambourine, and played along to some music on the radio… I actually enjoyed the feeling of beating along, but I don’t read music notation…

                If I take it along to church on Sunday… Is it okay to play along? After all, some people clap their hands…

                I could get kicked out!!! (I once got kicked out of a choir, for giggling…)

                Barry Manilow sings a song called ‘One voice’.  Maybe that is what we all need to be… Just one voice, singing in the darkness… Then everyone else will sing…

                With OCD, if we continually seek reassurance for things, we are effectively demoting ourselves, and putting someone, or even everyone else, above us, regardless of whether or not they warrant any authority over us.

                In today’s society we are taught to conform. Now that, in itself, can be a good thing, in moderation. After all, When out travelling in the car, it helps to believe that the traffic coming towards us will stay on their side of the road.

                But when it becomes a need to bow down to others whims, or to try to avoid contaminating the world around us… We are immediately putting ourselves at a disadvantage… Inadvertently of our own making.

                We don’t have to believe other people’s opinions of us… We have a right to be here…

                I will build myself up, take my tambourine along in a carrier bag… Rattle it a bit to give them a sort of warning of what is to come, and possibly bravely play along to the singing…

                I will willingly contaminate the sound in the building. Ideally, others will eventually do the same… In some churches they actually have groups of tambourine players… But I sit at the back… That’s okay, isn’t it? Why am I asking permission?

                If they don’t like it, there are plenty of other churches… Come to think of it, That’s probably the reason that there are so many churches!!!

                Anyway, I digress.

                Could we say that we need to give ourselves permission? We are our own closest colleague, friend or otherwise…

                Let’s all be a little obstinate this coming week… Have fun without intentionally inconveniencing anyone else… Sing out loud to your favourite song on the radio. Giggle uncontrollably when something funny happens…

                As OCD’ers, We are good people, who sometimes care a little too much about things. We are good people. And the world needs good people like us. Let’s smile a little more, let’s make conversation with the checkout operator in the supermarket… It will brighten their day too.

                Let’s pause seeking other people’s approval for a while, and see if things change…  It’s my guess that they will, and we will find ourselves feeling more at ease with ourselves, and thus,  As we each take back control of our own selves  in the world, those people around us too. It’s definitely worth a try, Don’t you think?

                Until next week friends, Friday evening, Same sort of time…

                Wannabe

                #28397
                wannabefree
                Participant
                Participant

                  Next week, ‘Leading on from the subject of seeking permission… The problem with seeking reassurance…

                  Til Friday 15th then… About six pm.

                  Wannabe

                  #28458
                  wannabefree
                  Participant
                  Participant

                    Hi Friends…

                    When it comes to seeking constant reassurance…

                    Well, the first thing that comes to mind is… Who would I ask? I need someone who will be on my side, so to speak. Someone I can trust to reassure me in a good way. I look at the people around me… In so doing, I inadvertently lower my self esteem below where I perceive their self esteem to be strong enough, in order to advise me. That self esteem of mine is then on a spiral down, cos, due to the complexities of OCD, the more I seek reassurance, the more I doubt it, and ask more, until my friends walk away in exasperation. And I then come over as difficult to live/work with. In a staff team, I could be the one they make redundant first.

                    Just like the weird feeling we get, when, after having checked that the door is locked three times, the stronger the urges are to check it, just once more to make sure.  I even used to phone my daycentre from the bus stop, so they could check that I had signed out of the premises, and yet, I might still hold the pen in my hand… Such is this malady of OCD.

                    I got away with playing my tambourine last Sunday…  Mind you, it was smuggled in in a canvas carrier bag, so that no one knew it was actually me! As if that should matter! I’m me. I took my music keyboard in last night, and that is now fine. Next week, I’ll play it just a little louder so I can hear over the brass band practice taking place in another room from me.

                    Back to the OCD and reassurance.  How do we actually believe the person who reassures us? Have I told them everything, exactly as it happened? Maybe they don’t know anyway.

                    If I asked a food hygienist, they’d probably say that it is safer to just give up eating anyway!

                    If I make a cheese and ham sandwich… A very popular choice of mine. Two important questions;

                    1) What do I cut it with, and

                    2) On what colour chopping board?

                    I wonder what their answer professionally would be…

                    My answer is; Wooden or dishwater rinsed white plastic chopping board, and any knife sharp enough to cut it with…

                    It’s what we do at home anyway. And the sandwich will be fine…

                    We won’t need any reassurance at all as long as we remember that our bodies have a fantastic immune/defence system, that, just like our muscles, needs to be put through it’s paces every so often, to keep it working at peak efficiency. We actually need the bugs around us, or our natural defences will evolve out of us. We will lose the ability to survive in our own natural environment. So;

                    Next time you feel the need to ask for reassurance, Just hold back for an hour or two, or even overnight, and see if the need disappears of it’s own accord. If not, Ask, just the once, and leave it at that. Each time we do this we find the urges reducing, to the point where we start to feel free to live as ourselves… Life becomes wonderful again (Well nearly) and we find that we can remember the things we want to remember, and can concentrate much easier on things. Give it a go…

                    I’ve now got to think about something for next Friday… I don’t think I will have been chucked out of church by then!!!

                    I had the keyboard all wrapped up in an old (Clean?) blanket and old canvas bag, on a sack barrow last night, because it is so heavy to handle. As I get braver, I’ll turn the sound up so that someone else might actually hear it!

                    For next week then… Let’s have a look at the tricky subject of ‘Acceptance’.

                    Chat again next Friday 22nd September, at about 6pm.

                    Wannabe

                    #28481
                    wannabefree
                    Participant
                    Participant

                      Okay… Acceptance. Does that mean giving in? No, not entirely. It is about finding a way to underline the situation, then calmly agree to move forward, in a good way, that we are ourselves are in full happiness with.

                      For instance… I may have arranged to go out shopping say, but the weather has turned stormy. My original plan was to not wear a coat. So… I can stay home… But then, there may be something in particular to go and look at, or even purchase. Accepting that situation would be, putting on a coat so I don’t get so wet, but wear, my best one, so I still feel good about myself. The situation had changed, but I’d accepted it, and found a compromise with it (Compromise in the noun, not the verb).  The ‘Serenity’ prayer takes this further… I need the strength to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and then, the most important part; The wisdom to know the difference. Because, as yet, I haven’t found a way of preventing the rain!

                      If a big rock is in the way, calmly go around it metaphorically speaking. Find a common ground.

                      With a grubby house, we actually improve our natural defences… It has long been known that a child raised in clinically clean conditions at home, can find themselves coming down with every ailment under the sun, in later life.

                      If when going out shopping, I ponder momentarily on the unlikely, Bu, Feels very real, idea that I could have left the front door unlocked, or a light switched on. I can choose whether or not to worry about it all evening, worrying unceasingly at the cinema, for instance. Or, I can push the thought away, allow it to be there, accept it in fact, And leave it till I get home later. Any electric won’t cost much, and you almost certainly locked the door anyway, because you are always so thorough about such things.

                      Isn’t it weird when you get that situation where you lock the front door, walk to the gate, then just pop back to the door, and find that the urge to just check it, keeps getting stronger, rather than weaker each time we check..? That is a hallmark of OCD. The easiest and quickest solution is to just lock it, then walk away, without going back even once to check. And our watchful neighbours will see that we are okay too… The need to check actually diminishes on it’s own over a decreasing periods of time, and we are then free. The more we leave things alone, the easier it gets. And that truly is a blessing.

                      We are none of us wholly responsible for the safety of those around us. It would be impossible to achieve. If a person wants to trip on something that would be perfectly safe, if they simply looked where they were going, that is their issue, not yours. A court of law would expect people to look where they are going, to actually have some responsibility for their own safety.

                      For instance, driving the car over a steep drop because the sat-nav told them to, will not hold up in court.

                      So… Let’s step back a bit… Give back to other people the responsibility for their own safety, that they will then, hopefully, have the common sense to care for themselves. Small children can be vulnerable, yes, but it is the adults who try to sue each other. And sometimes us…

                      Litigation is big business for solicitors, regardless of who wins the argument… Sometimes it is just being spiteful and greedy, for the pursuit of more money, than what they have already, and can never be satisfied with.

                      And if a person gets a reputation for being vindictive, nasty, for suing people, where does it really get them? And we probably all know people like that… Bullies can get to become managers, cos they enjoy the power over other people it gives them…

                      So… Acceptance… It is not giving in, but creating a process by which a difficult circumstance can be resolved, to the ultimate benefit of all concerned. And that just has to be a good thing, Right?

                      Next week, The new idea of ‘Bontamination’, rather than Contamination. Is it a good idea?

                      Till next Friday  29/09/ 2023.

                      Have a steady week folks…

                      Wannabe.

                      #28606
                      wannabefree
                      Participant
                      Participant

                        Hi friends.

                        This idea of ‘Bontamination’ then… It is a derivation of the word ‘Contamination’. But using the prefix ‘Bon’ which comes from the french for ‘Good’. A good form of ‘contamination’. An immense positive.

                        It considers the idea that, If I touch something in a shop, for instance, Whatever my fingers put down onto that item, or indeed, pick up from it, and then transfer to something else, but is insufficient to cause myself, or indeed, anyone else, overload of natural defences, immunity system if you like, then it is actually a good thing…

                        In fact, our natural defences, are like a muscle, or other bodily system, they actually need to be challenged in order to strengthen themselves, A workout if you like… It is actually good for us to be ‘grubby’ sometimes.

                        I reckon it is a good idea, the problem is actually taking the risk…

                        When I go into a burger bar or restaurant, I glance around me. All those other people… Have ‘any’ of them got clean hands? Really? Could I ever be held responsible for anyone of those people being inconvenienced by tummyache?

                        Do they ever get tummyache? I don’t know. But if their hands are already ‘grubby’, they’ll give themselves something, long before I could ever do…  So…  I am free… Free!  And you can be too…

                        That’s really good isn’t it?  So… It’s time to go to your favourite ‘no knives and forks’ restaurant, and buy something nice to eat. Whilst eating, glance around at what other people are touching… Cash… Bank cards… The toilet doors…  And also, become aware of the very few people who use the hand dryers before they re-enter the eating area.

                        So… Just like babies crawling on the floor, and putting their fingers in their mouths… A natural part of development…  Even essential… So… Let’s allow ours and theirs natural defences to become super strong… Let’s actually do them a favour…  Rather than worry that we’ve done something less than perfect… Germs are everywhere… But then that has always been the case… We are actually resistant to our natural environment…  And that is an essential to our survival… And that is evidence that would stand up in a court of law… We are free to live our own lives… Thanks to good old biology.

                        One of the most powerful forces on earth…

                        A simple new word… ‘Bontamination’. Maybe one day it will be an important part of our vocabulary, Who knows?

                        Next week we will have a look at coping better with stress, so we aren’t always exhausted…

                        If you can find it on youtube, check out ‘Desiderata’, narrated by Les Crane. It is an interesting philosophy… A good way of living our lives. There used to also be a website called ‘Inspiration Peak’, I’ll check that one out too.

                        Until next week then…  06/10/2023, at about the same time…

                        Take it steady dear friends…

                        Wannabe

                         

                        #28662
                        wannabefree
                        Participant
                        Participant

                          Hi everyone. We’ve  made it through another week!

                          I saw a caption somewhere that the way to cope when things are getting too stressful is thus…

                          Change the situation,  or, change the way you are approaching it.

                          In my own life, this last week has been very stressful. I would like to play the organ. I would like to play in my loxal church… I  have a super instrument at home, that is big enough to go into my local church… But I cannot get the people in there to let me have it there, in case it should look untidy… In a church!

                          Solution, go to a different church!!!!! So I will… to the nearer one that has coffee mornings!

                          There is a new song…

                          ‘Just where he needs me, my lord has placed me, just where he needs me, there would I be, t but they don’t want me, but Jesus loves me, so I’ll go somewhere  else!

                          A simple case of changing my approach to things… I  can use my God given talents somewhere else, and actually nearer to my home! My portable keyboard goes on its own trolley. Fantastic!

                          I have to get on with everyone there, they don’t want me to inconvenience them. To be honest, the other church does communion, and I like that.

                          So, change the situation,  if you can, maybe three or four times… Try everything… and then… Go somewhere  else to do your thing. Do what you are already good at!

                          A quick one tonight, seeya next week same time  same place.

                          Wannabe

                          #28710
                          wannabefree
                          Participant
                          Participant

                            Hi Everyone,
                            Just scraped through another week. Close the curtains and put the lights on!
                            Okay… Today we think about something that has probably happened to all of us at some point…
                            Have you ever felt let down, I mean, Really, really let down?  It could be when you were saving up to buy something, and then been told no, or maybe when seeking reassurance. I used to be part of a care team. I say team… But it destroyed itself with all the pettiness. As hard as I tried, nothing was ever good enough…
                            One way of dealing with this, is to identify the main cause… And confront it…
                            I do it in writing… That way I don’t forget anything. I’m putting a notice up in church tomorrow.
                            At least then, if I find somewhere better, no one can say that I never told anyone.

                            Some so-called ‘religious people’ are absolutely horrid… Critical, self-righteous, moody, judgemental, even just plain nasty.Whitney Houston recorded a song called ‘The greatest love of all’. It is apt and to the point. It is also quite easy to play on an organ/keyboard. I hoped to play in church… But it is difficult getting in the door with a keyboard, especially when, like myself, we cannot read music notation.

                            Please don’t call me a ‘Christian’, I’m really a man of faith… Yes… I’m simply a man of faith. I attend Salvation army church at present, but they seem to prefer brass band or piano. I cannot do either!
                            Too many people ask, and get some sort of reassurance about me being ‘A christian, A soldier, A corps cadet’ etc.

                            The Islamic faith reveres the virgin Mary…

                            It isn’t about being in ‘uniform’. It is about what is in our hearts, the kind of people we are. The ‘Church of England’ does not exist in Scotland… We ourselves, are not the only ones who are right.  There is room in Heaven for all faiths, There has to be, as in many countries, Christianity is forbidden.

                            In some countries, so-called ‘Christians’ carry machine guns and shoot people… I do wear a hat, but no uniform. I move incognito, I am trying not to be a target for other people’s wrath. (Especially those in uniform…) Some people, when they are in a ‘uniform’ of some kind, can be really bolshy… Have you noticed? We are supposed to be encouraging people in, not driving them out. Is it like the nursing profession, People leaving faster than they can be recruited?

                            Church needs to be comfortable, otherwise people will not stay… Com’on; Be honest… Would you?

                            So… I may have to play somewhere else… Where people don’t build your hopes up, only for them to get resisted against. I once worked for a boss who didn’t give a damn about the workforce. In the end, the excessive noise put me in hospital.     How does this relate to my OCD? Well, mine was brought on by PTSD. A sense of responsibility, A sense of guilt, Nothing I could ever do would be good enough…

                            Remember when you got your school report? There would always be at least two teachers ‘Very disappointed’ with me. But… I know now that, no one is gonna be good at everything… That’s why we have doctors and CBT therapists.

                            Part of growing from OCD is gonna involve being a little hard on ourselves. Check out Rob Willsons books, Dale Carnegie is worth a mention here too.
                            Do you have any requests for next weeks edition?

                            Until next week then. Dear friends Same time, Same place.

                            A Final quote from ‘Hill Street Blues’;

                            ‘Let’s be careful out there.’ Or something like that.

                            God Bless.

                            Wannabe

                            #28711
                            wannabefree
                            Participant
                            Participant

                              I’m sorry for the lateness dear friends… I copied from another document, and the whole thing jammed.

                              I will now write it out in full, so we still get an entry tonight.

                              #28712
                              wannabefree
                              Participant
                              Participant

                                Okay… I really thought copy and paste would work, but my system seems incompatible in some way. So I’ve printed it, and now write it in full on here, before it times out on me.

                                Todays post;

                                 

                                Okay, Today we will think about something that has probablt happened to us all at some point…

                                Have you ever felt let down, I mean, Really let down? It could be when you were looking forward to buying yourself something really special, And then been told No, Or maybe when you were seeking reassurance, and it was kept from you…

                                I used to be part of a care team. I say team… But it destroyed itself with all the pettiness. As hard as I tried, Nothing I did was ever good enough…

                                One way of dealing with this, is to identify the main cause or culprit, and confront it… Hard.

                                I do it in writing… That way I don’t forget anything. I put a notice on the desk of my church yesterday. At least then, if I should find somewhere else better, They cannot say that I never told anyone.

                                Some so-called ‘religious’ people are absolutely horrid… Critical, self-righteous, moody, judgemental, even just plain nasty.

                                Whitney Houston recorded a song ‘The greatest love of all’. It is apt and to the point. It is also quite easy to play on an organ/keyboard.

                                I hoped to play in church… But it is difficult ‘getting in the door’ so to speak, with a musical instrument, especially when, like myself, you cannot read musical notation.

                                For all this reasoning, I do not class myself as a ‘Christian’, I’m really a person of faith…

                                Yes… Simply a person of faith. I attend salvation army church at present, but they seem to prefer brass band or piano. I cannot do either!

                                Too many people ask, and seem to get some sort of reassurance about someone being a a Christian, or Soldier in uniform, a Corps cadet (Salvationist).

                                The islamic faith revere the virgin mary…

                                It isn’t about being in a ‘uniform’ . It is about what is in our hearts, the kind of people we are. The Church of England’ doesn’t exist in Scotland…. We ourselves, are not the only ones who are right, or indeed wrong for that matter…

                                There is room in ‘Heaven’ for all faiths, There has to be, because, in many countries, Christianity is forbidden.

                                I do wear an ordinary hat, but no uniform. I move incognito, I am trying not to be a target for other people’s wrath, (Especially those in uniform…)

                                Some people, when they are in ‘uniform’ of some kind, can be really bolshy… Have you noticed?

                                As regards church, we are supposed to be encouraging people in, not driving them out. Is it like the nursing profession, people leaving faster than they can be recruited?

                                Church needs to be comfortable, otherwise people would not stay…

                                Com’on, be honest; Would you?

                                So… I may have to play somewhere else… Where people don’t build your hopes up, only for them to get resisted against.

                                I once worked for a boss who didn’t give a damn about the workforce… In the end, the excessive noise put me in hospital…

                                How does this relate to me having OCD?  Well, mine was brought on by PTSD. A sense of responsibility, a ridiculous sense of guilt as well. Nothing I could ever do would ever be good enough…

                                Do you remember when you got your school report? Taking it home to show your parents…

                                There would always be at least 2 teachers who were ‘very disappointed’ with my progress.

                                But hey, No one is really ever good at everything. That is why we all need everyone else. That is how we get doctors and CBT therapists, as well as all the support staff…

                                Part of growing from OCD is gonna involve being a little less hard on ourselves.  Rob Willson is a good writer, as is Louise Hay, and Dale Carnegie.

                                Do you have any requests for next Friday? Same place, but about 6pm!

                                Until next week then my dear friends. ‘Let’s be careful out there.’ (Anyone know the origins of that line?)

                                Wannabe

                                #28788
                                wannabefree
                                Participant
                                Participant

                                  Hi everyone…

                                  Hi Friends… Well… We’ve made it through another week… Only just maybe, but definitely yes, and for that we can be proud and grateful in equal measure.

                                  Well, What to share with you all this week… It has been very stressful these past few days. So I wrote a lot of stuff down in a sort of letter, I then placed it where people would find it… And… They did. I expected to get into trouble, but no, the issues will be sorted out very soon, as we have a new leader coming to take over the running of the Salvation Army hall, where I am an adherent member.

                                  Churches tend to be almost political at times… I believe that the ‘Vicar of Dibley’ parish council was based on reality… A sort of ‘committee’, that cares more for itself, than the people it is supposed to be representing. I once worked in a factory… No guesses which department had no redundancies… Union reps, supposedly, and I had a young child on the way…

                                  Factor in the word ‘Greed’ to the equation, and see what comes up, every time!

                                  Instead of waiting to be invited, I will continue to force my way in at church, whether they like it or not… I am there to do what I’m already good at… We are all here to do what we are already good at… Some people say; ‘We are each of us Naturally gifted’. I agree. We just need to wait to find out what…

                                  I do other stuff too. But there is no way I’ll ever worry about an ability about not being able to read musical notation… I don’t need to, I play by ear, and that is sufficient for me.

                                  You, Dear reader, Are already naturally good at something special. You may not know yet what it is.

                                  Do you remember the careers officer at school? What is it you would like to do with your life?

                                  I went through half a dozen different trades before I retired. Industries came and went, that’s how it often goes, and not necessarily in the name of progress… Long gone are the days of a ‘job for life’ regardless of training or ability. Long gone… Apprentices are often cheap labour now. The old YTS scheme in the UK was abused… By employers that I was working with. Nowadays even colleges don’t teach the old industry processes, so things quickly become obsolete when spare parts are no longer made…

                                  If I came up with a brilliant business idea, I would be told to go and get a job employed by someone else, or they’d take away my unemployment benefits. To get funding, would mean taking an idea abroad, where willing hands would help, so all the skills went overseas… And now we no longer have the raw materials to make stuff anyway…

                                  Rant over!

                                  In order to succeed within ourselves, we need to explore and develop the things we are each already good at… Even though many around us will say no. When we have an idea, we need to find the people who will say yes, rather than it seems, the vast majority, who will tell us why it cannot be done… We would warm to the teachers of our best subjects… We have to let go of those who are disappointed in us… Few people are brilliant at everything… If indeed, Any…

                                  Go for your dreams…

                                  A really good film is ‘The Ice Princess’. About a girl who loves ice-skating on the pond near her home, to the point where she works her way into an ice rink for training. She is chasing her dream… We all, as ordinary people, have the right to dream, to aspire to wonderful things, but never forget… The person with an unlimited expense account, will never know the true value of anything. A good pearl of wisdom that.

                                  When you actually create something, regardless of monetary value, it is automatically special to you, and you alone.

                                  ‘Celebrities’ beware!  Most don’t even read their own books, let alone write them! And it is the actual writing of the book that is far more exciting and satisfying. It doesn’t matter if it ever makes money or not… What about you? Have you ever thought about writing a ‘Journal’? All your thoughts and dreams, Ideas and theories… Just for you.

                                  It’s not necessarily about getting published… Although that is always a possibility. It is about actually owning and processing your own mind.

                                  That is priceless.

                                  More next week. Friday 27th October, at approximately 6pm, Hopefully! Wow! It’s nearly November!

                                  Wannabe

                                   

                                  #28831
                                  wannabefree
                                  Participant
                                  Participant

                                    Hi everyone…

                                    Another week survived, just…

                                    This week we are going to look at the value of ‘Thank you’.

                                    Normally, us OCD’ers find ourselves often using the word ‘Please’. It is Please this, Please that, may I please have some reassurance. The problem with the word ‘Please’, is the first four letters of the word… Plea.

                                    A plea is a desperate request… Where we place our self-value below that of the person we are asking. That is a negative situation. Not a good starting point. We need to be positive, in order to go forward with our lives.

                                    Contrast this with saying ‘Thank you’. When someone else says it to us, we feel good, elated, positive about ourselves. We all have something we can actually really say a big ‘Thank you’ for something. It may be as little as having enough sweetener in our Coffee, Or the fact that someone returned a gentle smile to us today. A comfortable bed for tonight. Enough food to make at least one more meal today, and hopefully manage to ‘enjoy’ it.

                                    Last thing at night, I don’t say the ‘Lords prayer’, But simply, and sincerely say the words ‘Thank you’, out loud. It may or may not matter if anyone hears me, But I do. And it feels good…

                                    I go to the supermarket, and force myself to meet the gaze of the till operator, smile, and say  ‘Thank you’.  I guess it makes their day, and them smiling back at me, makes mine. It costs nothing, and yet means so, so much. It is the natural human thing to do. Try it… Just once at first. Say ‘Hiya’ to anyone who makes eye contact with you, but no more. Unless of course they reply… They will in effect be wishing you a good day… It feels so nice to hear someone else do that for us…

                                    Shops are a good place to begin… Even the petrol station till operator. They might see no one for hours, or lot’s of people in a shift, but how many smile? It isn’t the cash desks’ fault for the price of the purchase.

                                    So… Over the weekend, put yourself into a situation where you can honestly say ‘Thank you’. For anything, regardless of cost, or need.

                                    In the church, there is a song called ‘Count your blessings…’ (When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed…’)

                                    Sometimes a blessing can be a single breath, a sniff of a flower scent. A warm coat on a cold day, Even the chance to smile, to make someone’s day, and thus, they you.  Money alone cannot buy happiness, it is often the things that cost little, that can have the most value.

                                    A person with an unlimited expense account will never know to true value of anything, Whereas, You and I can see a tiny flower, or a beautiful shade of colour, A favorite biscuit or cake… Mine is chocolate…

                                    I now have to start making tea for myself and my caree. Something really nice, tasty, but not expensive necessarily. We already have something in the freezer… I just have to cook it first. And the cooker works, so I will start from right now.

                                    My grandchildren visit tomorrow… Tiring, but oh, so wonderful. We have a lot of fun together. And then they go home! But only until next week. I absolutely adore the times we get to spend together. It is really nice to be able to share. And they bring out the youthfulness in me. I have a badge that states ‘Growing old is inevitable… But growing up is optional!!!

                                    Until next week then, dear friends. Thank you for reading this whole article. I really do appreciate you for doing so.

                                    Now it over to you… Let’s have some fun!

                                    Same time, same place, next week 3/11/2023 at about 6pm.

                                    Wannabe

                                    #28843
                                    wannabefree
                                    Participant
                                    Participant

                                      Hi Friends…

                                      Tomorrow I’m due to go for a family meal… I’m going out of duty to my wife, it is her family after all. We have seen the menu… Not too pricey, but jolly close! The thing is… Will I be expected to dress up? I might just go for reasonably smart, but comfortable. I choose not to drive, but will still most likely have cola to drink.

                                      Now… Have you ever been to one of those restaurants where you have more than one set of cutlery on your bit of the table, all at one and the same time? Now, I’m not posh, but where do we start?!!!

                                      My rule… If it is chips, I give in straightaway, and use my fingers… They will be as clean as anyone else’s. It is easier that way, just as long as I don’t think too deeply about, if even at all…  Battered fish, the same…  To be honest, I intend to take a tupperware box with me, so I can save some for later on, but most importantly, leave space for pudding…

                                      Thinking of pudding… Ever tried to eat a slice of cake with cutlery? Using the fingers makes far less mess. Bearing in mind that any children will most likely be doing the same. The only time I use cutlery is if I have put a load of cream on the cake, or, in the case of fish and chips, Salt and vinegar or gravy on…

                                      What is the worst that can happen? I won’t get ill, so why on earth would someone else? If I use the loo, I wash hands just the once after, use the hand dryer, then really grab the door handles to return to the main restaurant.

                                      Try it… Deliberately use the loo first… Then really ‘Bontaminate’ your hands as you go back to your table to eat.

                                      That’s your challenge for this week… Can we do it? Let’s ‘Risk it for a biscuit’ so to speak. I’m gonna try… And If I was a betting person, I could bet that none of us, yes, None of us, will have any real discomfort due to eating. I would win that bet, and so would you, if you but give it a go…

                                      For most people in society… It won’t even be a consideration… Let’s just get at and enjoy the food!

                                      To be honest, At the end of a meal, I’ve been known to lick my individual fingers once, and wipe them dry on my clothing, if there are no serviettes available. It won’t harm me, or spoil my clothing.

                                      So, just for this week then… Eat something that it is actually easier to eat with fingers… Let’s be just a little ‘reckless’. Be an experimenter… Test the theory…

                                      One other thing… Do you ever find yourself going back to check something? Maybe lights off, or doors locked.

                                      Isn’t it fascinating how the urge to check just one more time, actually gets stronger the more we check?

                                      Ah Well… Such is our OCD. But we are on a learning journey, and we all have useful experience. Even if it is a bit of a proverbial pain in the neck at times.

                                      Okay… Until next week dear friends…  Friday 10/10/23, at about the same time together.

                                      Wannabe

                                       

                                      #28863
                                      wannabefree
                                      Participant
                                      Participant

                                        Hi Friends…

                                        Today I would like to explore the subject of ‘Guilt’.

                                        Many OCD’ers suffer pangs of guilt, often misplaced or exaggerated Guilt. I know I do. In care work, which I was involved with for some years, There can be an excessive sense of responsibility for our own actions, how we interact with people around us etc. How do you function cheerfully in an environment where some rules actually contradict themselves. The proverbial red tape tied up in knots.  Some food hygiene rules make the food inedible!

                                        We can try to read other people’s thoughts, make pre-judgements of ourselves. Does he or she like me? If not, Why not? We can then knock ourselves down, and effectively become our own worst enemy. We ourselves know where we are vulnerable, and can stab ourselves metaphorically, in the worst possible ways. we punish our own weaknesses in ways others cannot fully utilise.  Our own self-esteem doesn’t stand a chance. And without that, well… We well know what that feels like.

                                        Do we forgive ourselves anything like as much as those who hurt us? Are we really worth less than them?

                                        Absolutely No.

                                        We are good people deep down, trying to cope with a very judgemental society. If we show sensitivity, it is often seen as a weakness. And yet… People like ourselves are the very salt of the earth. No one is perfect, nor can they be. Everyone has to bend the rules sometimes. Life is like that… Nothing is strictly clear cut, or 100% right. There are lot’s of beautiful metaphorical curves, rather than rigid straight lines. We need to metaphorically ‘bend gently’ to life’s demands. We need to forgive ourselves more. Perhaps twice as much as we would forgive anyone else around us.

                                        Others around us are bending rules all the time. A tree that doesn’t bend in the wind will snap and break. Flexible trees embrace the wind, move in harmony with it.

                                        Why was I targeted by bullies? I most certainly was not a threat of any kind, if anything I was soft, A pussyfooter. But that is what my life experience has made me… It’s a survival tactic. The theory could be, be nice to others, and they will return the favour. Except that it doesn’t work like that in real life, unfortunately. People can be worse than wild animals. When the circumstances are such, people become like vultures. At the reading of a will, family members fight and squabble over tiny details. Homeowners fight over who owns the boundaries, even what the boundaries consist of, right down to mere millimetres regarding the positioning of fences etc. Car parking spaces can become an issue. If you are good and give people an inch, they take the proverbial mile, and more, if they think they can get away with it. And they don’t feel guilty regarding how you or I might feel as a result.

                                        We need to dissolve our feelings of guilt, misplaced or not. We are as much citizens of this world as anyone else around us, we aren’t perfect, nor are we meant to be. Just forgiveable, and believe me, we all are.

                                        I believe that Heaven, has many rooms, for all the different faiths and mantras of the world. Perhaps if people were more lenient towards each other we wouldn’t feel so awful about ourselves sometimes.

                                        Guilt is largely a man-made thing. There is credibility in the statement, ‘To err is human, Forgive; Divine’ regardless of wherever you place yourself in the grand scheme of things. It is impossible for any one person to be totally at fault. I’ll say that again, cos it is important. ‘It is impossible for any one person to be totally at fault’, although solicitors make an absolute fortune out of trying to prove such things. We are each a product of the world we are born into, and shaped, however badly or well, by those we come into contact with, from the very moment we are born. Our lungs are polluted every time we take a breath, likewise with everything we ingest.

                                        But we are built in such a way to have physical resistance, immunity if you like, to our surroundings, when we receive the right sustenance and support. Of course, that sustenance and support is not infallible. Things inevitably go wrong as well as right. But the metaphorical flexible Willow tree bends with the breeze, and gently returns to it’s normal grandeur when the wind stops.

                                        As people in general, we are not all brilliant at sharing… Our feelings as well as other things.

                                        The two pensioners chatting in the doctor’s waiting room; “Hello George, How are you today?”    “I’m fine! Couldn’t be better!”   Now if that were truly the case ‘Neither’ of them would be there waiting to see the doctor!

                                        So… For the next week… Let’s be honest with ourselves when we aren’t feeling okay. Let’s go easy on ourselves. Let’s forgive ourselves… Let’s not be afraid to get things wrong sometimes, and not immerse ourselves in a cloud of guilt.

                                        Don’t forget, We are good people trying to function in a very unforgiving world. A world of people that blame others in a futile attempt to feel better about themselves… Such is the human condition. We are very fragile, so let’s be gentle with ourselves and our feelings.

                                        Check out ‘Desiderata’ by Les Crane on Youtube. Listen to it twice through. And I’ll be here next week, at the same time;

                                        Friday 17/10/23 at about 6pm. And now, in the words of Kent Walton who used to introduce the Saturday evening in the 1960’s TV wrestling programme, ‘Have a good week til next week.’

                                        Wannabe

                                        P.S. A good book to check out too; ‘Feeling good, The new mood therapy’ By David D Burns MD, available on Amazon.

                                        #28938
                                        wannabefree
                                        Participant
                                        Participant

                                          Hi Friends… We’ve through another week, Maybe only just, But We’ve made it through another day.

                                          Today, We are going to look at the subject of ‘Calm’. Pause for a moment, and concentrate on feeling ‘Calm’.

                                          It doesn’t come naturally, does it! Maybe because our lives don’t revolve around calm as much as being stressed. I the workplace it is said that stress makes us perform better. Well Yes, maybe to a point, But…

                                          We all need the physical oasis of just being ‘Calm’ sometimes. Some more than others, If we are being honest with ourselves.

                                          So, Let’s try and just be ‘Calm’ for a moment. Really Calm…

                                          We can perhaps do this in basically in most situations of reasonable safety. The ‘one gentle breath at a time’ technique. The human heart actually takes a total ‘break’ or ‘Rest’, between heartbeats. Can we do something similar?  Perhaps between breaths, for instance. Some people say’Keep calm and carry on’, through whatever we are faced with in life. Another saying is ‘Life is a roller coaster… You either put your head down and scream, Or lift up your arms and squeal with delight!

                                          I think there is a religious song with the line, ‘Oh still small voice of calm’.

                                          I listen a lot to music… Melodic stuff, it tends to be more positive in them. I see ‘Rap’ as brilliant poetry, but it does tend to dwell on the negatives in society at the mo.

                                          So… Do you have favourite music/singers etc? Youtube, on a mobile phone, and in-ear headphones. No one else can hear it as well as you can, and it transports you to another world…

                                          If you are hearing challenged, An art gallery, or taking photo’s of your own, again, a mobile phone can have a pretty good camera on it. As you are on here, I presume that you have internet…  It is often possible to download stuff to do later, for when you have no internet signal.

                                          In a park or recreation area, trees make sound in the wind. Different trees make different noises… A writer calls that ‘Tree-music’.

                                          In the library, we can get ‘talking books’. Alongside printed books. As a child I was transported to faroff places by Richmal Crompton, Enid Blyton, Captain W.E. Johns, amongst others. We didn’t have even colour TV then…

                                          Maybe have a go at Writing? Your own stories, Your own characters… You choose the journey… Go with friends…

                                          On the Open University website they have a section called ‘Open learn’. It is free to join, and there are lot’s of mini courses you can do in your own time, on anything that interests you. No commitment, but you can earn ‘digital’ certificate you print out yourself. If I remember rightly, you can chat with tutors on line too. If you feel academic, go for a qualification with a student loan, they can arrange all that for you. And there are some fascinating subjects available.

                                          Where does this relate to OCD? Well, I guess it can be said that us OCD’ers have a lot of thinking time on our hands…

                                          Any favourite pastime can help to alleviate that at least a bit… Give us that metaphorical ‘Rest between heartbeats.’

                                          Let’s have a go at that then… Maybe? I will try if you will…

                                          As I write, I’m reminded of AEsops fable about the battle between the sun and the rain, trying to get someone to take their coat off.  I Had an LP, music by Ed Welch, and narration by the late Arthur Lowe. It is a beautiful story.

                                          Rainbows are beautiful to look at, but we have to have rain first. The not so good times seem to be there to accentuate the good times, however few they are…

                                          October and November are especially difficult for me, not helped by the darkening evenings. My first nervous Breakdown occurred in an October some years ago. Likewise, Christmas day… I always have a tree of some sort, with a few brightly coloured lights on, just to please the senses, anything to brighten the day a bit.

                                          I intend to watch on youtube ‘Andre Rieu in Sydney’, cos the words will be in English for me to understand. I will have in-ear headphones on, so that I can immerse myself in the performance. O still small voice of calm… Oh still small voice of calm… It works in any philosophy or faith or culture, cos it’s a human thing. As much a part of us as breathing itself.

                                          Right now, I choose not to get angry…  I’ve been waiting for urgent email enquiries to be resolved. But with a lot of business sites, it seems that they are ready to take payment for things, but actually fulfilling their end of the deal, Well…

                                          And some of this stuff has literally taken years, many years. I don’t mind waiting… But sometime this year would be nice!

                                          Tonight I will be cooking the evening meal for myself and my caree. Will I get it right? Well I do more often than not. The cooker is still a bit of a mystery to me, but I slow a lot of stuff down… Do it at ‘My pace’. To be fair, as long as the result is edible, Who cares?!

                                          A nice biscuit… A slice of bread with nice butter/spread on it. Even Marmite, if you happen to like the stuff!

                                          A small glass of favourite wine/juice, a favourite sweet or desert or cake. Just one… A little bit of calm…

                                          Next week, We’ll be looking at the subject of ‘Sleep’, and hopefully getting sufficient… Now that’s a real biggee that one, I have a notorius sleep condition, but more about that next week.

                                          So, Let’s be careful out there, grab a bit of calm whenever we can, and I’ll be back with you next Friday 24 November at about the same time.

                                          Wannabe

                                           

                                          #28993
                                          wannabefree
                                          Participant
                                          Participant

                                            Hi everyone. Another week, And we have made it. Maybe only just, But definitely made it.

                                            It is extremely cold outside right now, so it will be extra blankets for me tonight.

                                            Okay, Sleep… Do we have a complete lack of it, or indeed, struggle to actually stay awake?

                                            I remember a lecture I was attending at college, maybe thirty or so years ago, When the person sitting alongside was snoring really loudly. (They’d not long come off of doing a nightshift somewhere). I felt very self conscious, but the lecturer just carried on as if nothing was happening!! Maybe they were used to such occurrences!

                                            I know that it is futile to stay up beyond say, 2am writing something, cos around that time, my blood sugar will naturally drop, as does the standard of my handwriting, spelling, grammar, etc. I am supposed to be resting at that hour anyway. I don’t actually do night shifts anymore, thankfully.

                                            At school, because I did my homework very late at night, then the crap marks I got, were probably due to the same thing… I was often very hungry too, but that is another story. Maybe next week?

                                            We didn’t know about such things as sleep patterns and blood sugar then…

                                            So… Sleep. It is absolutely vital to get enough shut-eye. The body needs it, the brain needs it. Physically as well as mentally.

                                            My notorious sleep condition is similar to a friend of mines. It is linked to the essential ‘REM’ sleep we go through. Rapid Eye Movement sleep. The thing is, normally, just the eyes move… In my case, Most of the rest of me moves as well! Much to the annoyance of my nearest and dearest!  I googled it… For me there is very likely no cure, cos I’m already on medicines for my OCD.  But… It is manageable. Now that we both know what it really is, as opposed to me being psychotic and deliberately nudging her while she is attempting to sleep!  I actually woke up during an episode, and wondered what on earth I was doing… It freaked me out.

                                            We all need sleep… We are physical biological creatures, maintained and controlled by forces we sometimes have very little control over. (Just ask anyone who snores!) Sleep enables important regenerative processes to happen. Too much sleep, and we don’t get sufficient time to do anything, but not enough, ultimately leads to increased anxiety, irritability, and makes us difficult to be around. Rattiness is the term for this.

                                            To be comfortable in our bedroom, some people need a small amount of light, ‘Coming around the bedroom door’, or silence in the room. Some prefer total darkness, others sound. And that all needs to be addressed to the individual person. I have a night time radio station on, one that doesn’t keep reminding me what the time is. Cheerful music, Nothing sad or morbid. It helps when the radio presenter is upbeat and cheerful too.

                                            There is nothing weak about needing a lot of sleep. It is physically essential, in varying amounts, to every man, woman, and child on the planet. So, when you get a chance to snuggle under the covers, do so! That way, even the air you are breathing is warmed up. Just like we did when we were kids with little or no heating in our homes!

                                            A warm drink can help, before settling in for the night. And maybe a biscuit or two. We are treating ourselves to a specific time of rest, glorious rest. A little bit of Bliss. And it doesn’t actually require money.

                                            I have just picked up a copy of Susan Jeffers’ book ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’. I reckon that it’s most likely available on Kindle, just as the kindle App is available on your App store function on your phone.

                                            In the book, she deals with a few things that maybe one or two of keep us awake at night…  Well, a few of the things that keep me awake sometimes…

                                            Maybe you could write your own book? Put it on Amazon kdp, to self publish, and obtain your own printed copy to show friends and relatives… Now, That’s an idea… ‘O’ level English study to help me with grammar and spelling, and then write anything we like… I like that idea…

                                            I’m also into cuddly toys… Charity shops are a good way to find yourself a cuddly companion that never berates you, or argues. It puts us in touch with our child side, and in a really nice way. We are in control. It is also brilliant for when there isn’t actually a person around to give us a nice hug.

                                            Okay… So let’s attempt to get sufficient sleep tonight, or the next time you settle down to sleep. Tomorrow morning if you are due to do a night shift tonight… I prefer a small amount of gentle light… To be honest, At my age that is necessary for me to find my way to the loo!

                                            One last thing for this week…  At night, After using the loo, I opt to use antiseptic alcohol hand spray to ‘clean’ my hands… It saves having to turn on and turn off taps, and use the towel, which isn’t always particularly dry anyway…

                                            Until next week then, Dear friends 6pm UK time, Friday 1st of December 2023. Hey, We can get away with getting some cheerful Christmas decs up then… Mind you, We’ll eventually need to prepare ourselves again, for when they come down again for twelfth night! (To be honest, I have brightly coloured lights of some sort up all year round!).

                                            Let’s be careful out there…

                                            Wannabe

                                            #29109
                                            wannabefree
                                            Participant
                                            Participant

                                              Hi everyone, I’m running just a bit late this evening. I will put this weeks entry up very shortly…

                                              Wannabe

                                              #29110
                                              wannabefree
                                              Participant
                                              Participant

                                                Okay, sorry about that short delay in this evenings proceedings…

                                                So… Snow. The dreaded white stuff. It covers everything… We cannot see what is under it on the path. And I’m not just talking about sheet ice…

                                                I would panic a lot. We’ve all heard the jokes about not eating yellow snow… But, what else could there be? Well, Thankfully, dog-owners are usually a bit more conscientious these days, so to be fair, I don’t look, beyond making sure that I’m not going to slip or trip over. Beyond that, we are basically safe. We are protected by our natural systems, and thus, so is everyone else, as far as we can be sure. Kids have always crawled on the floor, even we did, and I grew up on a council estate in the south of England!

                                                I do hate being cold though… I’m right under the bedclothes at night! And I have the radio on for company!

                                                The house isn’t particularly cold, but it isn’t all that warm either. And I’m an old bloke! My body has begun its’ unco operative phase. The mind is willing, but the bones and joins are getting rickety.

                                                I’ve noticed that there are quite a few houses with Christmas decorations up. It brightens our street where the main lighting is not brilliant (Pardon the pun!).  I’m sure that the warm Summer months will return.

                                                Anyway, Don’t worry about white snow… It is safer to walk on than ice anyway, but the point I’m making is, Don’t keep stopping and looking back the way you’ve just stepped. It really is not important. Keep going forward, not just walking, but also in life’s struggles.

                                                Christmas will be interesting this year. If I can, I put some foodstuffs in the foodbank trolley at the supermarket. I know what it is like to rely on foodbanks. The main thing I remember is that We don’t always get the chance to choose stuff… And I do only like certain baked beans… They don’t all taste the same!

                                                For reasonably clean hands, I actually use alcohol based spray, rather than the gels. It evaporates away quicker, and isn’t messy. It’s only after using the loo anyway, or sometimes between certain ingredients when preparing a meal. I find that actually cooking the food, is great for shutting down the worries regarding the odd germ on the worktop. It tastes nice, and as I’m the main carer for my partner, it falls to me to do the cooking… I use real butter on bread… It tastes too nice to worry about anything at all! Food that tastes really nice, combats a lot of worry, and it doesn’t have to be particularly special or expensive.  Like most people, I have to be budget conscious.

                                                I use a bank card to pay for everything, But these days, I never clean it in any way. I cannot pass anything to anyone that they haven’t already got… Nor they me… So I just concentrate on getting stuff that I need, and say stuff the card. It has never harmed me or anyone else that I know of. If it was in any way dangerous, We’d be told to clean things, but we aren’t. Go with the flow…

                                                Okay… Time to make a nice hot drink… I actually use the microwave oven to boil each cup-full. It is quicker than using a full kettle. Something to eat that will fill me is next. I cannot go to sleep hungry. It may just be a slice of bread and marge, using my hands to handle it… We have enzymes in our saliva in our mouths as a first line of defence. We need to let these strengthen as well as protect us.

                                                Okay… Next week, I will be using a different computer link, but should still get something up next Friday evening. I haven’t chosen a subject yet, but it is likely something to do with the approaching festivities, and coping with it all as an OCD sufferer.  I will very likely have some more book ideas for you too. And a thought about trying to put stuff back on shop shelves, when we’ve ‘handled it’.  Sometimes when we select something in a shop, we decide that we no longer want it and, just as we did many years ago, just pop it back where it came from.

                                                I have recently bought a record player turntable. There is a lot of stuff on vinyl in charity shops. Really good stuff is beginning to come through now. And cuddly teddy’s. And they’ve also been handled by thousands of people before us!

                                                It is definitely worth the risk, believe me!

                                                Until next Friday then  8/12/2023, just as long as the internet is functioning to get my entry up here by 6-7pm.

                                                Let’s be carefully out there…

                                                Wannabe

                                                #29379
                                                wannabefree
                                                Participant
                                                Participant

                                                  Well… We are early tonight!!! I have an engagement this evening, so rather than be two hours late, I’d get this written early.

                                                  So what about today then? The news is quite depressing, and the evenings are dark at this time of year. All a big contributor to feeling depressed, and weakened to daily combat our OCD etc.

                                                  I’m due to go to a holiday centre shortly… Perhaps two thousand people who won’t have made themselves sterile first…  One or two might get tummy-ache… At those sort of odds, you are more likely to get mugged in your favourite supermarket!!! We survive! A little bit of ‘grubbyness’ actually helps us. In many ways, it is vital for our survival on the planet.

                                                  When we go into hospital, we can pick up germs… Only by breathing… Everything else has been practically sterile for years, and lowering the amount of work our natural defences strengthen on to protect us. And all because of solicitors…

                                                  But, in normal life… Let’s go to that Cafe for a sandwich, without wondering ‘What have I left on the door handle?’. ‘Could I possibly be putting someone else at risk of illness, because I touched something?’. Those other people will have already infected themselves anyway, without any help from me… Everyone has natural defences… The oil in our skin, The enzymes in the saliva in our mouths, and the army of white blood cells in our bloodstream that are constantly protecting us from the inside. In short, we are okay. Everything is reasonably safe.

                                                  It may soon be a situation where people come down with colds and flu type illnesses, cos everything has been too ‘clean’.

                                                  Care environment actually document that things have been bleached to destruction… Because in court they are up against solicitors trying to get thousands for a client, just because they had a tummy upset… Litigation is making things un-natural for us. We have our immunisations, and that should be enough in an ordinary environment.

                                                  Okay… The car…  I don’t drive anymore, because of a medical condition, but when I did, I would ‘Go back and check…’ All this would make me late for meetings etc. When I did go back, I would find nothing wrong. I’d just get upset about the amount of time I was wasting for myself, everytime I went out anywhere.

                                                  I would worry about dog poo on the pavement… I trod in some maybe once a year… And just rinsed it off my shoe. It was incredibly rare, and yet I would scan the pavement behind me ‘Just in case’.  Get frustrated at finding nothing…

                                                  We are perhaps a little too conscientious for our own good, maybe even a lot… Way too much.

                                                  We’ve travelled on buses and trains all our lives… All this ‘cleanliness’ came in the last thirty years or so… How did we ever survive our childhoods? We did, because our bodies have an amazing immune system. Looking into human biology, it is amazing how everything is working. Organic plumbing some people call it. Truly incredible. Let’s allow ourselves and others around us to rely on that for a while, just as we did as kids. Ultimately, it can be good for us.

                                                  I wore a Christmas jersey yesterday, it was supposed to be a national thing… I’m just glad that I did, that’s all. It felt good.

                                                  I’m gonna try and smile a lot today. Mainly to myself to start with. It sort of lifts me a bit. I do a lot of saying ‘thankyou’ too, especially to shop assistants. I usually get a smile in return, and that further lifts me… Anything in this darkened world of ours… We don’t need to be totally sterile in ordinary life. Surgeons do tend to work in that direction, but they are working inside our natural protective barrier, the skin. When we pick up a loaf of bread in a supermarket, it will go through the tills, just as it has always done… And we’ve lived to tell the tale. Letting go of worry, will really lighten our day, and those around us too. We become happier in ourselves, and that is definitely a good thing!

                                                  Next week we will be looking at finding Compromise, (in the noun), within a world that is very often kind of nasty to us. Some work environments are really toxic in a mental health sort of way… People seek to tear us down… Just cos we are sensitive. Just why is it that we seem to get targetted so much? We can find that we do it to ourselves too…

                                                  Okay, until next Friday then. Let’s be careful out there…

                                                  Wannabe

                                                   

                                                   

                                                   

                                                  #29535
                                                  wannabefree
                                                  Participant
                                                  Participant

                                                    Hi everyone… I have come down with a really bad cold… Nose running, sneezing and headache. Will I pass it to anyone else? I most likely already have, and they me. It will probably last just a few days, and then I can get on with the runup to the Christmas period. A cold brings me down, and it makes me feel miserable, and unable to do much at all.

                                                    So, What of this ‘Compromise’ in the noun then? Well… It means to find compromise with things. Not be compromised. In our day to day living, We put on a coat when it is raining, but when the sun shines down, we remove the coat. Without force or fuss. A willow tree bends in the wind, but returns to normal height when the weather is calm. If it didn’t, it would snap off and be ruined. It finds compromise with the wind. And survives to live another day.

                                                    We can do similar. Something I do when rushed, is resist going too fast. I need to go at my own pace… We all do… In that way we operate at our maximum efficiency, and can do so for more prolonged amounts of time. In a vehicle, or on a bike, we can go into a lower gear. It simply makes things easier to do. Easier is better.

                                                    We can accept that there are going to be germs all around us, but not all dangerous. Stimulating our natural defences to become stronger, and in turn making us more resistant to the world around us. We continuously adapt to our surroundings. As do everyone else, even without us doing anything about such things. When we breathe, some things will go into our lungs, and thus through the Alveoli structures into the bloodstream. There they are wiped out by our white blood cells… The guardian soldiers of the bloodstream.  When we ingest something, there are enzymes in the saliva, and acid in our stomachs. Yet another barrier we have against the outside world. All these things have developed naturally, It is part of our natural systems that develop and adapt through our whole lifespan.

                                                    A good bit of CBT to do, is to go into a large restaurant, and watch how other people are behaving. Some will be unconsciously picking their noses, then picking up food with their fingers… Chips are more easily enjoyed when picked up individually with our fingers…  What about a cheeseburger then? They are all eating without using knives and forks. If that was a hazard, they wouldn’t to it. But they do!  I cannot make them ill! They are risking it for themselves. Can I risk it for myself? Well… When we were kids we would very likely have had packed lunches on school outings. We’ve got away with it, haven’t we?

                                                    Watching other people doing things this way, can actually reduce our urge to use the anti-bacterial gel every few moments. I would use it almost continuously. Even before Covid. In fact, the very day that Covid hit, was the very day I actually managed to put the brakes on my constantly reaching for the gels.  In a surgical setting, staff are seen to be preventing the risk of infection, and documenting it. That way they have something to show a court of law that they are sticking to protocol as regards cleanliness. Such a lot of people are out to make money by suing people for the slightest thing. And if you become unlucky enough to work in such a situation, well, I retired due to ill health.

                                                    People seem to get pleasure out of tearing others down. I guess we will all have been in the situation where we are performing some sort of task, to find people watching us, waiting for us to make a mistake, so that they, can then pick us up on it. It may give them pleasure, but not for long. Any feelings of superiority fade away quite quickly, and they find themselves having to bully someone else, in order to try and raise their own low self esteem or whatever.

                                                    True self-esteem is gained by achieving for ourselves, not by watching others fail. I have met managers who bullied staff to try and hold authority.  At school they used to say the bullies ‘grow out of it’. But as we all well know, bullies just kick others out of the way for promotion, become bosses, and wipe out efficient teams of workforce. In short, they do a heck of a lot of damage in the workplace…

                                                    People even die… Bullying is very difficult to find compromise with. It should ideally be stamped out. But that is another story…

                                                    If, when travelling through a busy shopping centre for instance, we will be neatly dodging in and ouf other people approaching us. We neatly step around… We are finding compromise with that situation. Otherwise there would be chaos… People colliding, getting very annoyed with each other.

                                                    As it is with ordinary life… We see an obstacle, find compromise with it being there, and calmly step around it. It’s not a weakness… In fact, some people may call it a ‘gift’, to be able to do that, smoothly. And with a minimum of fuss.

                                                    It takes practice, but it does get easier, the more do this, it can even become fun when trying to find items in a supermarket, for instance.

                                                    Agree to differ, and get all the shopping, hopefully without forgetting anything, (Like the one thing we’d actually gone in for in the first place!)

                                                    I need to close now… I will try and sleep off this cold… So… Until next Friday then… 22/12/2023, at about before 6 pm.

                                                    Let’s be careful out there…

                                                    Wannabe

                                                     

                                                    #29586
                                                    wannabefree
                                                    Participant
                                                    Participant

                                                      Hi Dear friends…

                                                      Well… They had an announcement on our local radio station, to say that our local health authority is enlisting… One of the things I heard was, ‘Trainee psychotherapist’. Mmmm… I know what it is like to be a long-term patient…

                                                      But unfortunately, as I’m not an academic, No chance… Oh Dear… I could have such a lot to offer…

                                                      Another knockback…  I guess I’ll just have to drop back onto my other hobby of dabbling in writing… Don’t you sometimes think that us patients no more about this than the so-called qualified professionals?

                                                      Tomorrow I go caroling with the Salvation Army band. It’s really good fun, especially when the music goes wrong!!!

                                                      Tonight I will sleep… Christmas will be okay… I don’t know how, but somehow we’ll get through it all. I try not to listen to the old Christmas songs too much… They are from a time when my life was not very happy at all. Andy Williams one, It’s the most wonderful time of the year’, takes me back to a time when it most certainly was not the case at all. I was an unhappy little boy, who didn’t know or understand why…  This time of the year is massive in contrasts… Some happy times… But mainly, not so happy times. My relatives didn’t get on, and as the eldest of five children, it was often down to me to rescue things.

                                                      We don’t have to be blissfully happy all the time… No one ever is.

                                                      I wear a baseball cap all the time when low… The wide peak forces me to hold my head up, relaxing the muscles in my neck. It works, you try it. It lifts the spirit, enabling us then to cope with things better. And especially at Christmas, most of us need all the help we can get…

                                                      The same old TV stuff, not much of it new. People acting jovial and happy… They are acting, it isn’t even likely to be real, although acting it to start with can be a great step up.

                                                      I have suspected Epilepsy now… So I no longer drive a car. I wasn’t that interested anyway before. It is a good excuse to let someone else cope with the stunts that are going on on our roads at present. I’d much rather sit and watch!

                                                      So… Christmas cards… I have sent a few… Postage is getting ridiculous now… And I struggle with addresses. People who never speak anyway throughout the year… And presents… What do you get for people who already seem to have everything… How much to spend… I’m broke anyway… I couldn’t live up to other peoples ideals anyway. I try to live up to my own now, which are much less demanding… I’ve given up trying to be a perfectionist… After all… No one else is, Are they?  All those people who sit watching us, so that we make a mistake and they can pick us up on it, making us feel really awful. Simply knowing that they probably cannot do better, doesn’t always enter our mind at the time.

                                                      Do they get pleasure out of doing so? Not for long methinks…

                                                      But when you or  I get it right at the final attempt… Yes, That’s a good place to be…

                                                      Cos people will put us down when we are trying so hard to be cheerful. But if we are each living our own life… That just has to be best. Especially for ourselves.

                                                      I still have the sniffles… The cold and flu treatment just doesn’t touch it. It will be nice to feel reasonably okay on Christmas day, I’m in charge of the catering in our house! Something to do with never really knowing for sure, how it will all turn out. And when it does… Why can’t I remember for next time!?

                                                      So… Let’s be real good to ourselves over the festive period. Don’t try to overstretch… The slow method works… Plenty of relaxation, and not expecting it to necessarily be brilliant… Next Spring and Summer are not that far away, and the nights will be lightening up real soon. If it snows where you are, just stand in it and wonder at how silently it falls. Touch it… It is only water. Breathe steam into the air,  look up at the sky, and just enjoy the moment. Take your time… And most of all, take time for yourself… It is your time too.

                                                      If you have a faith, God bless you, however you concieve him/her to be.

                                                      And if you don’t, I wish you deep joy my friend.

                                                      We will all be together next Friday. Possibly a little earlier, depending on my ability to link to the internet.

                                                      I have a small amount of chocolate put by in case of emergencies(!).

                                                      Have a wonderful Christmas everyone… We are all worth it, regardless of what we or others may think of us. We are good people at heart, and will one day indeed find true happiness.

                                                      Until next Friday then, 29th December 2023, some time around 6.00 pm, or thereabouts.

                                                      Wannabe

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