Reasons to Recover

Hello,

So I decided to write a little post about motivation because it’s one of the main things that I’m starting to struggle with when it comes to OCD recovery. Exposures are difficult, they cause so much stress and anxiety and tears and I need every motivation possible to bring myself to challenge compulsions. Reasons to beat OCD is my therapy homework for the week, so here they are, my main reasons to beat OCD.

  1. Life would be so much easier.

OCD makes everything rather difficult, simple things feel 100 times harder when obsessions and compulsions are involved. Things that other people do without thinking seem nearly impossible when I start thinking about it. Sometimes I simply overthink to the point that a small thing, like going to a French lesson, becomes terrifying and causes a lot of anxiety. By doing exposures and getting into recovery, hopefully the smaller things will be a lot easier and life in general will feel simpler.

2. Improved Concentration.

I find it very hard to concentrate. School is becoming increasingly difficult because I feel pretty much no focus at all due to constant obsessions. Sometimes, the main problem isn’t even the obsessions, but I’m simply so exhausted from constant thinking that I can’t think straight. By gaining some control over my OCD I might be able think clearly and learn about the things I’m really interested in.

3. Going Out with Friends.

At the moment I’m a bit of a hermit crab, I pretty much stay at home unless I really have to go out. I watch the Snapchat stories of my friends, laughing and having fun at parties and other social events while I lie in bed watching Friends because the idea of going somewhere with more than 4 people in a room other than school is pretty terrifying. I feel like a failure of a teenagers because I’m 16 and I’ve never drunk alcohol or even gone to a party for that matter. Maybe with some therapy and a bit more progress, a night out with my friends will be on the calendar!

4. Being a Better Friend in General.

The only attribute I really care about obtaining in life is being caring and compassionate towards other people and through struggling with obsessions and compulsion I’ve lost that. I struggle to notice when other people are upset, which used to be a talent of mine. I used to be so much more empathetic but because I get so focused on compulsions now, I find that I’m less observant and it makes me so upset and angry. I want to be a good friend, to cheer people up and be a fun person to be around and I’m hoping that maybe soon that will be a reality.

5. Eating Healthier.

My OCD has meant that I have quite a few worries around food, and a lot of the foods I’m most scared of are fruits, meaning that the number of healthy snacks available to me at home are much more limited. This means that I tend to reach for chocolate and biscuits instead and I know I eat terribly. The one thing I want to be able to do for my own health is be able to get my 5 a day so that I can feel healthier.

6. Reducing the Worry for Family.

My family are fab, they’re hilarious and they make me so happy and the last thing I want to do is worry them. Only 2 of my 4 sister know about my OCD and the 2 that do don’t really understand it so struggle to react in ways that are helpful. My dad and step-mum try their best, and the main reason they struggle to understand is because I struggle to be open with them. I hate the idea that they worry about me, that they worry about whether I’m doing better or worse. By recovering, maybe I can reduce the worry for them.

7. Participating in Fun Things.

I do two science A levels, biology and chemistry. These two subjects involve a lot of fun experiments with cool outcomes that really show the theory in a way that makes it easier to understand. Practicals are really hard for me, chemicals and sharp objects trigger a lot of intrusive thoughts connected to both contamination and harm which make even touching the equipment almost impossible some day. I wish I could take part in everything in the same way that my classmates do, I wish I could show the same enthusiasm about science that my teacher shows, I wish I could have fun in the lessons that I chose for myself. Science is fun, the experiments are fascinating, I just need to overcome my fears so that I can participate and have fun myself.

8. Be Happier.

I’m a bit of a pessimist. I struggle to see the good in things because my head is completely clouded with negatives and worst case scenarios. I know for a fact that I can be difficult to be around sometimes because the only time I manage to be positive, it is usually in quite a sarcastic manner. My friends are all absolutely incredible and I could not ask for them to do anything more to support me, and I wish I could give back to them by being better company. Positivity is tricky sometimes, it can be hard to see the good in tough situations and the light in your darkest moments, hope is the one thing I have to hold on to. The hope that I can be happy in my own skin and happy in my home, I want to be happy more than anything and I know that the way to get there is through recovery.

 

So these are my main reasons to recover. Recovery is going to be hard, I know that. I know that it will probably contain some of the hardest things I have ever done but all I want is to be happy, I want to be more optimistic and have a positive outlook on life. I want to get better more than anything in the world so that I can have a happy, healthy life, so that I can go to university and study and learn and make new friends and experience everything I can. Listing these reasons has helped me to realise all the good that can come out of recovery and while the thought of exposures makes my heart skip a beat, maybe I’m ready to start real recovery.

Au revoir,

~Izzy

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Another Fresh Start

Hello,

I know it’s been a very long time since I last posted, but I decided that I want to start posting again. I’ll post about my progress in OCD recovery, my progress in A levels, my progress in life. This is what I want my blog to be about: progress. I realised recently that progress is something surrounding all of us, everything we experience, good or bad, is a way of progressing forward in our lives and by taking every day as a way to grow in as many ways as possible we can really improve in all aspects of life.

I realise that what I wrote in the above paragraph makes absolutely no sense, but I haven’t really written in a while and it might take me some time to get back into the swing of putting my bizarre thoughts into words that make sense to someone who isn’t in my head. My brain has been a bit of a nightmare to live with for the past few months and so maybe this blog will give me a bit of an outlet and you might even learn something from reading my weird rants. I used to love writing, it used to be a huge talent of mine but as I grew up, I found that my creativity level dropped until it was barely accessible. I used to be able to conjure up fantastic worlds for myself to live in when the real world became too much and now the real world surrounds me and puts so much pressure on me to write in a way to gain marks in exams that the other worlds in my head started to fade and I miss them. So maybe, just maybe, this blog will be a way for me to access some of the creativity I lost and learn to put things I struggle to comprehend into words that feel right.

I hope that maybe you’ll enjoy reading my rambles.

Au revoir,

~Izzy

Getting On Top of Things ~ Week 1

Hello everyone!

So this week I thought I’d have a little chat about adjusting to Sixth Form, including how I’m coping OCD wise.

I am studying biology, chemistry and French at A level and I am loving all of them! Weirdly, I’m finding biology the hardest as I really struggle to concentrate in the lessons and we are currently doing cells which I found incredibly boring at GCSE but I am very much hoping it will get more interesting. Chemistry is very very interesting, I’m actually loving it even though I’m finding the maths side of it very difficult, however I’m going to persevere and get some practice in because I love chemistry and I’m determined to do well in it! French is the one that I don’t know where to start with, I’ll go into more detail in a bit but basically, OCD and French are not getting on too well….

Work wise, I am getting on pretty well, I’m managing to use my free periods somewhat productively and it’s great as I have a friend who does the same lessons as me and therefore has the same timetable so I know I’ve always got someone to do work with. I’m struggling a bit to get my work done at home as I’m really procrastinating lately, so I think I might do a post sometime soon about procrastination (which I will probably write as a form of procrastination) as I might give me some inspiration to get some work done!

So OCD is struggling with the change in my daily structure. In chemistry I am really struggling with the looming practical experiment that my teacher has described. On Thursday we have to do a titration which worries me because I’m too scared to touch any of the chemicals because of contamination and the idea of putting on a lab coat is also terrifying. I had to try on a lab coat as my teacher (who knows about my OCD) said I could have my own and even though I wanted to cry I managed to do it and I’m so proud of myself!

So, French is a huge struggle at the moment. The main reason is because OCD has decided that if I make any mistakes in my work then I will fail the whole A level. I then proceeded to have a full on anxiety attack in between my double lesson (I had one lesson with one teacher followed by a lesson with my other French teacher) due to the fact that I started writing ‘beaucoup’ and accidentally spelt it ‘ba’. Yep, I wrote an ‘a’ instead of an ‘e’ and then froze for a while completely unable to write anything else for the rest of the lesson. It was pretty embarrassing to be quite honest so in the end I decided to tell one of my teachers so I feel a lot better now that they know.

So that was just a little update for this week, I think next week I might try to do a more interesting post as I have a pretty boring life if I’m honest. I hope you have all enjoyed reading this post, see you soon!

Au revoir,

~Izzy

A Fresh Start

Hello!

I know it’s been a while, but I kept starting blog posts and overthinking everything I was writing and then the other day I realised that the whole reason I started this blog was to have my own little space to voice my opinions and truly say what I want. I need a fresh start and so I have decided to revamp this blog and start posting in a different way.

I have decided that I’m going to do weekly posts, they will probably be very chatty and informal because that’s how I want my blog to be and this is my space to do so! If I ever get a flash of inspiration to do a separate post then I shall do so but I think I am going to start by just giving a bit of a view into my life, if anyone is interested in that….

I’m going to update about my progress in sixth form, my OCD recovery, my journey into university and my general life. I hope you enjoy reading my blog posts, and of course, if you ever have an idea for a post for me to do them just leave a comment and I’ll be happy to do some different posts once in a while!

I’m not exactly sure if this post has made any sense but I’ve decided not to worry about it, because always I worry about how I look, how I talk and what people think of me and this is going to be my space to just be me.

Au revoir!

~Izzy

 

Preparing for a Holiday with OCD

Hello everyone!

I thought that for my first proper blog post I would discuss something that has been playing on my mind A LOT lately: preparing to go on a holiday (with OCD in my case).

Next week I will be travelling 9 hours to go to Scotland for 2 weeks with my family and I am TERRIFIED! OCD has been going mad for the past few weeks which has been making it a lot harder to prepare and get excited, however I am going to use this as an opportunity to prove OCD wrong and do some of the things that it doesn’t want me to. That being said, there are some things that are scaring me more than others, for example, the 9 hour journey is pretty scary but nowhere near as scary as the thought of going swimming in a public swimming pool (which I don’t think I will be able to do at the moment) or going in a cable car to the top of a mountain. Some things I will be able to overcome and prove to myself that I am stronger than OCD, however that doesn’t stop the anticipation building. I have decided to compile a list of things that I am doing to help me prepare, and hopefully they will help you (whether you suffer from OCD, another mental illness or just find travelling difficult) to enjoy the holiday you deserve!

  • Talk to the people around you so they know how you feel.

This is something I find extremely difficult which makes it slightly hypocritical, however I am going to make sure that I tell my step-mum just how difficult I may find some things. I know for a fact that this will help me because it will mean that she knows why I might be reluctant to do things, and also as a reassurance that I don’t have to push myself past my limit which will definitely help me relax!

  • Do a bit of research.

This has helped me massively! I have been looking at the website for the holiday site that we are going to be staying at just so I know a little bit more about it. I know what our cabin will look like (more or less), I know that there are cycle paths and loads of places I will be able to go if everything gets a bit too much and I know that there is a playground I can take my little sister to if she gets a bit bonkers. I honestly feel so much better about this whole holiday now that I know what’s there so I really recommend this! There is one warning about this tip though: try not to let it become disordered. There is a difference between learning a little bit about where you’re going and needing to know every detail possible. As long as you keep it healthy, this tip could help!

  • Prepare for the journey.

I am currently doing a lot of prep for the 9 hour journey to Scotland I shall be taking at the end of this week. My family have decided that we are going to get up at 4am so that we can sleep for the first bit of the journey, however I have a few tips for the rest of the journey. Make sure you are comfortable! Plan what you are going to wear and ensure that the clothes you choose are loose (unless you want to wear leggings) and won’t make you get too hot. Another thing that I have decided to try for this journey is audiobooks, which I know isn’t exactly new but I’m just not very good at concentrating so I worry that I’ll zone out and miss half the plot, but I am going to try it and see what happens!

  • Make a brilliant holiday playlist!

Make a huge playlist with all of your favourite songs, songs that you can dance to, songs that comfort you, songs that you can sing to at the top of your lungs. I don’t know about anyone else, but music is one of my biggest comforts (Hamilton is a personal favourite of mine) and is definitely something that has helped me block out the OCD thoughts for a few moments. Life is better with music.

  • Take time out

If there is ever a time in your holiday where you find yourself doing nothing, take advantage of it! Go for a walk, sit outside and meditate, even just watching a few YouTube videos can make you feel calmer and happier to help you enjoy your holiday to the fullest.

  • Focus on the exciting bits

I know how easy it is to dread something like a holiday, how easy it is just to notice all the things that could go wrong, but part of recovery is learning to let things happen. We all need to remember that in order to truly recover, we need to be able to let go of a bit of control and relax into the “great unknown”. Even if your brain starts to race, distract it, tell it that it can worry, but it won’t change what is going to happen. Accepting that some things are out of your control is really difficult, but the more you do it, the easier it will get.

Those are my main tips, I really hope that these have helped at least one of you and that maybe, the holiday will be a lot better than you think it is going to be.

I’m going to Scotland on Saturday so there is a possibility that I won’t be able to post for the next two weeks, I’ll try my best, however I may just leave the blog here for a bit and then start to post more regularly when I get back.

I hope you’re all doing well, remember that you deserve recovery!

Au Revoir!

~Izzy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello!

Hello and welcome to my blog!

Maybe we should start with an introduction:

My name is Izzy, I’m 16 years old and live in England.

I love writing and have wanted to start a blog for ages but GCSEs and stuff sort of got in the way so now that it is officially summer (except that, at time of writing, it is raining – typical English weather) I have decided that the time is right to start writing. I have also decided that this blog is going to be rather chatty, as I find it easiest to write in that way and prefer to read blogs that use that style of writing so I hope you enjoy it as well. I’m not sure how often I will post, hopefully at least once a week but with the start of A levels in September looming it might be difficult to post at a regular time each week, however I shall do my best!

As I just mentioned, I am about to start Sixth Form to do my A levels which is nerve-wracking to say the least! I have chosen to do biology, chemistry and French which I’m so excited about but also slightly terrified as they all have a reputation of being very difficult subjects (my chemistry teacher said on multiple occasions that chemistry is the hardest A level) so I might use this blog to document my progress and share my feelings about A levels and Sixth Form in general?

In addition to A levels and other average stuff (in all honesty, I’m pretty boring) I also have obsessive compulsive disorder or OCD which makes life slightly more difficult, however I have decided that this year I am going to try my best to beat it. I may do a few mental health related posts on this blog as well, giving advice on self care and sharing things that have helped me so that other people can overcome any battles that they are facing.

On the whole, I’m pretty sure this blog is going to be quite random, it probably won’t follow a theme of any kind however I hope that you enjoy reading it and maybe even learn something(?).

And so it begins, the official start of my little corner of the internet that I shall use to be myself as much as possible 🙂

Au Revoir!

~Izzy