What are a few of your goals regarding your mental health?

Because of my perfectionism, I’ve tried to refrain from making goals in regard to my mental health. I just strive to get better every day and do the best I can. It’s not a hard and fast rule, just more of a guideline for me. However, there are a few things I’d like to accomplish with my life, especially now that I have a new outlook on the future, thanks to my therapy. 

1. Earn my Master’s Degree – As long as everything goes well this summer, I’ll be starting grad school in the Fall to accomplish this goal. I’m very excited to start this next step in my recovery. 

2. Travel Even More (and see more exotic places) – Obviously, it’s not a secret that I love to travel. It’s one of the few areas that OCD has left more or less alone. My therapist says that my OCD takes a vacation with me, and perhaps that’s why I enjoy getting away so much; it’s a vacation from my OCD as well. I’m more adventurous and willing to try new things and new experiences when I travel. However, push my limits too far and I have been known to have a breakdown while in a foreign country. 

3. Become a Leader at Work – I’ve always been a natural-born leader, but my OCD has held me back from realizing my full potential in regard to taking charge. I’m both aggressive and passive, and OCD magnifies these extremes. I want to work my way into upper management at my company and I feel like I’m positioning myself well to succeed in the future. This is more of a long term goal, and it’s something that I have to learn to have patience with, and patience is not my best feature.

4. Be Fearless – So this is very broad, but it encompasses things like: traveling to weird places, eating weird foods, meeting new people, putting myself out there, getting a tattoo or riding a motorcycle. I want to make choices without the days/weeks of agonizing over the decision before finally choosing the safe option. I want to not be afraid to take the risk.

5. Be Imperfect – I want to fail. That sounds awful, I know. But sometimes you need to fail to remember that you’re human and you’re not perfect. No one is perfect. Perfection is an opinion, not a fact. And it’s completely unattainable. Strive for your best? Absolutely. But remember that it’s okay to fail.

6. Learn to Forgive – This is a really hard one for me. I have a hard time forgiving others for their transgressions, especially if they show no remorse. I have a hard time forgiving those who aren’t even in my life anymore, but that I feel I never had the opportunity to end things with cleanly. I want to learn to forgive, truly forgive, and move on.

7. Love Myself – I am my own worst enemy and my own worst critic. I beat myself up a lot over things that I say or do, the way I act, the way I dress, the way I carry myself, etc. I’m harder on myself than I am on anyone else. I need to learn to love myself, and more importantly, respect myself because I am my own best advocate. If others spoke to me the way I spoke to myself, I would never speak to them again. So why do I allow my OCD to speak to me that way?

These are things that I never really thought much of before seeking treatment. I’ve made a lot of progress over the last 15 months and I’m really proud of that. It’s given me a whole new outlook on life and I’m so excited about the endless possibilities. I’m tired of living my life by a set of arbitrary rules that my brain set to control me. I’ve lived 25 years under the Monster’s control and I finally feel like a free woman. I feel like I can do anything I want, be anything I want, and I can be truly happy. Here’s to a new, exciting, OCD-free life – Cheers! 🙂