Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Headwreck

Worried about work but don't know if it's OCD

Recommended Posts

Hello.

I'm at a stage in work where I'm relying on a reference from my manager to get a new job. Since this has came about, I'm terrified of making a mistake. I have OCD which has involved work and still does ie checking work over and over, going into work at weekends to check, staying late to check, waking up and night to check emails, worrying about being sacked, etc. I cut back on the checks but they're coming back again and it's now taking me about 15 minutes to put something in an envelope because I have to keep opening and checking and closing it because I keep thinking I'm sending things I should not be sending to wrong recipients, things like that.

I'm now really panicking about everything I do and I'm finding I'm making mistakes (or maybe seeing things as mistakes that I wouldn't usually worry about so much or even notice). I'm petrified that I'm going to make a mistake and my managers will mention it on my reference or they will lie on the reference or refuse to give one. They've never had any trouble with my work, I've been given payrises and bonuses in the short amount of time I've been there, never had a day sick, had nothing but praise from management and clients. I have heard one of the director's say they think I'm odd and they're not sure of me (I think because I find it hard to fit in, I suffer a lot with social anxiety and very awkward around people) and she is one of the people who will influence my reference. I have also been there when she has refused another person a reference and she found it amusing. Can they give a bad reference because they think I'm weird? This panic I'm having is causing me to make more mistakes and I feel like I'm making myself unwell with it. What do I do to tackle this? Is it even OCD or is this normal for people to worry? I was going to go into work very early today to try and resolve something I think I've done wrong (genuine although think I'm overcooking it worry wise) but I forced myself to go for a coffee instead and wait to go in. I feel so upset. Any help appreciated. Thank you.

 

Edited by Headwreck

Share this post


Link to post

I don't know about help as such but I offer my sympathy its hard to try to control work related ocd themes believe me how ever to me you come across as a very professional person plus other people s perception of us is not within our control so let them get on with it trust me I m experiencing the same situation right now and its hard to keep my temper but we must belive in our selves and if you ve received pay rises and bonuses you must be competent and worthy of them 

Share this post


Link to post

Hi,

I'm sorry that you're struggling so much at the moment. I'm only in square 1 (in fact never left square 1) so I'm actually in no position to give advice but I'll try to answer your question and hope that something is useful for you. I can totally understand what you're writing since I also check at work. I've to read each Email x times, as you I've problems to put someting in an envelope, I've to check the address x times, especially to make sure the I did not mix up Mr and Mrs.... the list is endless.

From your other posts I know how important this new job is for you so I think it's absolutely normal that you're worried if you get it. But since you put yourself under so much stress your checking OCD gets worse. It's a vicious cycle, the more you're afraid of a mistake, the more checking, the more insecurity, the more the fear of a mistake.... 

I'm sorry to learn that your new job also depends on the reference of your current managers. I wish I could say that your manager won't give a bad reference but I can't, but what I can say for sure is that you cannot necessarily influence this and that sometimes you will never learn the motivation behind something another human being does. If she should give a bad reference - and I'm NOT saying she will - it might be because she wants to keep you because you're such an extremely good worker. What I want to say with this is, that you cannot influence your manager and she will do whatever she wants for whatever reasons and motivations she has. This is on the one hand scary but maybe it can also take away the pressure from you. We think compulsions help us to avoid a bad outcome, help us to make life more secure, give us control over things which are actually beyond our influence but in fact they won't change anything, they will only cause us distress and anxiety. All you can do is give your best, believe in yourself - everything your manager does is no more in your control.

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, Headwreck said:

it's now taking me about 15 minutes to put something in an envelope because I have to keep opening and checking and closing it because I keep thinking I'm sending things I should not be sending to wrong recipients, things like that.

In a previous job I did this loads, its a difficult one but the more you check the more you doubt yourself. 

In terms of references if you have been a good employee then you have nothing to worry about. It sounds like you do a good job there so the reference should reflect that. In terms of mistakes - everyone makes the odd mistake we are not robots and can't be expected to the flawless. 

I think OCD is magnifying the situation and wreaking a bit of havoc.

Share this post


Link to post

You need to realize that every time you perform a check you are doing a compulsion. You are reinforcing the belief in your head that you did something wrong, guaranteeing you will feel more doubtful the next time you do something, which will require more checks. It's a vicious circle.

And yes, this behavior can lead to real mistakes and other people may well notice that something is off about you.

Have a little faith in yourself and do away with the compulsions.

Share this post


Link to post

In answer to your question. Yes it is normal to worry but we worry a lot more than normal and carry out compulsions in an dysfunctional attempt to handle the worry. OCD is a extreme worry/anxiety condition.

I think the concern about getting a new job has figured in your past few posts/threads. For example not going to your GP in case occupational health/the employer   in the organisation to which you are applying uses it against you. As somebody mentioned, it does not work like that.

I would ease up on your absolute commitment/worry about getting a particular new job. (The job is one option among many and other opportunities will occur.) Paradoxically this will increase your chances of getting the job. You will be more relaxed at the selection stages.

 

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks everyone. I've been trying to stop the checking in work and have been having thoughts about making mistakes while I've been at home but I'm not giving them any time of day. Unfortunately I ended up in a right state yesterday in work and ended up checking everything in case I hadn't done something and cost the company money and custom and ended up with a bad reference.

The new job has been a long recruitment process, almost two years, so this is quite a big deal to be at the very end of it. If this goes bottoms up then it's not just a matter of applying for something new as it's a career rather than a job. I think this is why my OCD is having a field day but it's hard to not buy in, checking and being anxious is all I've ever known really. 

I have noticed one thing and I just wondered if anyone else can relate, I literally doubt everything. From decisions I've made to whether or not I've shut a door, taken a tablet, left a tap on, put my computer off when I leave work, everything. It doesn't seem exclusive to just one thing, it's like everything I do i doubt it? And I always expect the worst no matter what, it's like a safety mechanism for me as if I expect the worst then anything better is a surprise?

Edited by Headwreck

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, Headwreck said:

Thanks everyone. I've been trying to stop the checking in work and have been having thoughts about making mistakes while I've been at home but I'm not giving them any time of day. Unfortunately I ended up in a right state yesterday in work and ended up checking everything in case I hadn't done something and cost the company money and custom and ended up with a bad reference.

The new job has been a long recruitment process, almost two years, so this is quite a big deal to be at the very end of it. If this goes bottoms up then it's not just a matter of applying for something new as it's a career rather than a job. I think this is why my OCD is having a field day but it's hard to not buy in, checking and being anxious is all I've ever known really. 

I have noticed one thing and I just wondered if anyone else can relate, I literally doubt everything. From decisions I've made to whether or not I've shut a door, taken a tablet, left a tap on, put my computer off when I leave work, everything. It doesn't seem exclusive to just one thing, it's like everything I do i doubt it? And I always expect the worst no matter what, it's like a safety mechanism for me as if I expect the worst then anything better is a surprise?

I can relate to all you mention unfortunately especially expecting the worst being a saftey mechanism .... how to escape this cycle?  Still working on it basically it takes me to get to a low point before I expose myself to my fears not ideal I know but can be a starting point

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×