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This is my first time on this website. I am surprised I haven't been on this sooner. I have been struggling with my OCD and it has been getting worse over the summer holidays. I struggle with getting stuff done since I have nothing to motivate myself to do extra-curricular work outside of my university degree. I want to make some more animations to add to my portfolio (I study animation at university and this year has been quite stressful) but I can't adhere to one thing and stick to it because in addition to my OCD, I have ADHD. I have been beating myself up about not getting stuff done sooner or getting into more social events and I think that may have sparked my intrusive thoughts to rise up as I am constantly in an internal crisis, trying to scrub my mind clean of bad thoughts. I find talking about them helps out a lot so maybe discussing it with some of you might help me.  

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Hey it's your summer holiday, enjoy the break from your studies. Especially if it was 'stressful'.

I think it's definitely a good idea to get the balance right and enjoy time off, but I have a voice somewhere in my mind, which makes me think I have to keep busy.

I think that's my parents voice nagging me 'to get out and do something'.

I believe we do things at the right time. So I have a list of things I want to achieve, but I think there's no real rush and if I do them when the time feels right, I will do a better job.

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I hear that voice too, my parents do want me to plan stuff out more and get out and seize the day. Sometimes, the things I need to do take time and my parents don't realise I need to stay on my computer to do them but I do find I need social time so I am not constantly talking to myself. I think I need to set a realistic goal of what I want to achieve. 

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54 minutes ago, strugglingadult64 said:

This is my first time on this website. I am surprised I haven't been on this sooner. I have been struggling with my OCD and it has been getting worse over the summer holidays. I struggle with getting stuff done since I have nothing to motivate myself to do extra-curricular work outside of my university degree. I want to make some more animations to add to my portfolio (I study animation at university and this year has been quite stressful) but I can't adhere to one thing and stick to it because in addition to my OCD, I have ADHD. I have been beating myself up about not getting stuff done sooner or getting into more social events and I think that may have sparked my intrusive thoughts to rise up as I am constantly in an internal crisis, trying to scrub my mind clean of bad thoughts. I find talking about them helps out a lot so maybe discussing it with some of you might help me.  

In general during breaks between years at university can be extremely hard to motivate oneself to do all of the things we might feel we should do and for many its the lack of pressure or a deadline attached that can make that more difficult but in your case it can be even more difficult due to some of the challenges of ADHD. One of the things I noticed at least for myself with OCD is that the more empty time I have where I don't have things planned, the more OCD seems to show up so I understand it could be getting a little bit worse for you for similar reasons. I have just finished a 5 year degree at university (the last 2 of that being with severe OCD symptoms) but also am Autistic so social interaction is tricky for me and even throughout university was challenging. I wouldn't beat yourself up over not doing things you want to have done as you can't change anything prior the this moment right now. In fact, the more we beat ourselves up about things incessantly, the more damage we tend to do to our self-confidence and our self-esteem. 

 

In regards to scrubbing your mind of bad thoughts, this is what keeps the cycle spinning and is a form of thought neutralisation; a compulsion. I'm not sure if you have been in therapy at this point but that would be a good place to start but in the meantime, instead of trying to get the thoughts out of your head, understand they are thoughts that everyone else gets. The content doesn't really matter to an extent, especially from a treatment point of view. They can be horrendous in content and could be contamination related, violent, sexual, religious themed, existential etc. but they are just like every other non-horrendous random thought you have ever experienced, only you give more meaning out of them.

 

For the ones that are particularly catching as of late, you could try delaying the compulsion to try and mentally scrub them from your mind even by a few minutes each time if cutting out the compulsion seems hard at first. I imagine these compulsions would be mental and sometimes with mental compulsions like rumination, we can have been doing the compulsions for so long in response that it feels automatic, but it isn't. We can learn to separate that and realise we have a choice in whether or not we do or don't do the compulsions no matter how much anxiety or uncertainty we feel and that our compulsions don't prevent nor cause anything to happen or not happen. 

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@strugglingadult64I try to have a sort of list in my head of things I'd like to achieve, but also place spaces for relaxing in between. Long spaces until I have the mental energy.

I think what I try to do is get out and do things, see people, and then when done, go on PC.

But really after all your uni work you do need time to let your mind rest and maybe assimilate all your new ideas.

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