I epic failed at this mindfulness thing. I epic failed at the blogging thing. I’m just going to take a few minutes to lament the fact that I let an entire month pass by until I decided to post again. It’s truly not terribly tragic that I neglected my blog; it’s not like I have been featured in Freshly Pressed or have a devoted readership. In a moment of brutal realism, I might even say nobody and nothing is impacted by the presence or absence of my blog.
The truth is, however, I’m not blogging for other people. I am blogging for me. It’s a little tragic on a personal level because of what my dusty neglected blog represents: how I treat myself and my mental health. You see, blogging for most members of the WordPress community who have chosen to use their blog to bare all about their journey towards mental health (or their personal journey towards any personal goal) represents time taken for themselves. When you take time to blog about your goal, you are telling the world to respect your space for X minutes a week so that you can be good to yourself. You put all the demands being made on you in second place and put yourself first. God forbid anyone of us should decide to put off answering that text message or taking work home with us to spend 30 minutes in self-reflection.
As my counselor put it to me this week, “Time spent making yourself stronger than your OCD is the same as time set aside for yourself. You need that time in order to make progress”.
I have a confession: in addition to not blogging, I have not been practicing mindfulness, not been reading my CBT books, and have not been doing any homework from therapy. I have been wearing as many hats as possible and saying yes as much as possible to as many people as possible. And I’m not happy. My OCD has slowly and cleverly been getting bigger than me while I continue to put on a very convincing facade of normalcy and superhuman functioning.
This week is the 6th day of my Spring Break. I spent my Spring Break working, volunteering, running errands, and making up for lost time with loved ones. These all are positive things. I have realized, however, that there can be too much of a good thing. I like school, work, volunteering, and having a very active social life. I also like the idea of me not spending hours a day on obsessions and compulsions.
It’s time to just say it: I suck at balance & time management and Jiminy takes advantage of that. Stress exacerbates OCD. I can’t give so much time to other things and people while simultaneously spending more time on obsessions and compulsions. Everyone struggles with balance, but it’s especially crucial to gain some control when you have a medical condition that can rob you of your functioning. It’s also never too late to turn things around.
My homework for therapy this week was to determine what my current life goals are (first and foremost: learn to cope effectively with OCD & take back my life) and do some spring cleaning of my life so that my actions and my investment of time reflects my goals (making space in my week to do what I’ve learned in therapy).
Time for me to go play “Eye of the Tiger” and make it happen. 🙂
Have you taken time for yourself today?