In my first blog post, I explained how after struggling with symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder and schizoaffective disorder from a young age, I went through my “aha” moment and am now embracing my Mission to live the life I want to live, despite these disorders. I have put a plan in place over the last few days which I will slowly start to share with you all. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
Part of my Mission now involves blogging about my experience living with these illnesses and how I am moving forward. Blogging is a small part of my overall plan, but it is an important one. So why am I finally blogging?
Firstly, I strongly believe that blogging about my mental health experience will help me to move forward with these illnesses rather than backwards. I came to a rather unsettling but true determination the other day. When it comes to my mental health, I am either improving and moving forward with these disorders, or I am getting worse and moving backwards.
For me, there is no middle ground. There is no standing still. Unless I fight back against them, they seemingly overtake every part of me and prevent me from living a fulfilling life. I can honestly say that over the last 5 or 6 years, I have been steadily moving backwards with little forward movement. For my Mission, forward progress is my new option.
I believe blogging will help me to move forward in life a number of different ways. It will allow me to know myself better. I will be able to reflect on things that make me happy and where it is in life that I would like to go. I have lost track of this lately. It will also help me to have a better understanding of my illnesses.
Honestly, I have not done the best job of understanding them fully. It can be hard to fully embrace something that causes you so much hardship, struggle and fear. I have taken the path of least resistance, ignoring these disorders rather than taking them head-on. This will change with me writing about them on a consistent basis! I will also be able to move forward by discussing different struggles I am facing as well as positive areas in my life. I need to embrace the struggle, learn from it and overcome it. That is really the only way to grow.
Secondly, by blogging about my mental health experience and living with obsessive compulsive disorder and schizoaffective disorder, it is my hope that I will be able to engage with a community of people who are living with similar circumstances or may know others who are. This is something lacking in my life right now. Currently, I do not know anyone else who has obsessive compulsive disorder or schizoaffective disorder. At least none that have admitted to this! It is hard not having individuals who can share in these experiences. It makes you feel alone at times.
I know this will be a positive effect on my mental health. I have been to countless group therapies and have met others with similar symptoms. I found it to be very therapeutic. It is great having someone relate to why you wash your hands 50 times a day, and when you do wash them, you count in patterns of 4 and after the 4th time you completed the pattern you only have to do it 4 more times. Or why you feel the need to count your steps and if you mess up the count you have to back track and begin the process over again.
The feeling of knowing you’re not alone is quite comforting, and sometimes it’s fun to laugh at yourself in the process. I always had a good time at these therapies. Unfortunately I did not stay in touch with my groupmates. I am looking forward to meeting others who have similar symptoms and knowing that I am not alone in this journey.
Thirdly, this blog will help keep me committed to growth in not just my mental health, but also in life in general. I have given this a lot of thought, and I believe that in order to move forward with improving my mental health, I also have to move forward and grow as a person. Both compliment each other in my experience. I plan on blogging about repairing lost relationships, introducing past hobbies that I lost and becoming a stronger advocate for those with mental illness. I plan on also blogging about my experiences actually leaving my apartment and breaking my isolation tendencies.
I think it would be a sad existence if I focused solely on my mental health but forgot everything else that is meant to be enjoyed in life. I would hate to finally break free of my rituals and compulsions, but have no one to share this with. Or improve my paranoid thoughts and leave my apartment, but have no where to go or people to see. I want more for my Mission, so I will look to improve every aspect of my life and make sure I am keeping myself committed to this through my blog.
Lastly, this blog will help allow me to stay dedicated to my Mission and make sure I am following my plan. I have put it out there for the world to see (or at least those of you who have happened to stumble across my writing)! I now have something to keep my accountable, and hopefully in the near future I will have others who will help keep me accountable here as well.
I am a firm believer in accountability. Many times I will say I will do something, but unless I tell someone else and share this goal or thought, it tends to never get done. By sharing this Mission with all of you I am confident that I will achieve it and will have others to follow up with me if I am slacking.
These are just a few reasons why I strongly believe this blog will have positive effects on my mental health. Obsessive compulsive disorder and schizoaffective disorder are complex illnesses with many layers. I have had them for most of my life. This is why I plan to blog pretty much everyday. They are such a big part of my life that they need constant monitoring and attention so I do not fall further backwards or fail my Mission.
By having this blog it is my hope that I will be able to understand these disorders a little bit better and meet others who share these symptoms so that we can grow together.