Tuesday, June 19, 2007

If you're gonna do a half-assed job...

Then you may as well not do it at all!

I was doing a little reading (okay FINE, messing around then) online and came across this article about OCD, and all the symptoms, etc of the disorder. I was reading it, and it was scary, in some ways, and just plain sad in others. For instance:

In Cognitive Therapy of Personality Disorders, Aaron T. Beck, Arthur Freeman, and associates (1990) list typical beliefs associated with each specific personality disorder. According to my view, the beliefs and attitudes rationalize and reinforce the idealized image and the compulsive attachments and aversions. They are analogous to Karen Horney's "shoulds" and "neurotic claims." Here are the typical beliefs that they have listed (pg. 361) for Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder:

I am fully responsible for myself and others. (who else would be responsible for me, seriously?)

I have to depend on myself to see that things get done. (again, aren't we all responsible for ourselves? Why should anyone else have to micro-manage me?)

Others tend to be too casual, often irresponsible, self-indulgent, or incompetent. (This is true. Not everyone, but most people tend to have pretty slacker-ish standards on even really important stuff. Ooh, and don't get me started on those self indulgent fools who think they are entitled to stuff simply because they exist!)

It is important to do a perfect job on everything. (or as close to perfect as possible. Perfection is almost impossible, but you can get as close as you can so that others will know that you have high standards and are dependable.)

I need order, systems, and rules in order to get the job done properly. (how else will you know what "properly" is?)

If I don't have systems, everything will fall apart. (I don't know about everything, that's a little extreme, but systems and order prevent chaos.)

Any flaw or defect of performance may lead to a catastrophe. (again, catastrophe is a little strong, but flaws in performance are why people don't rely on others and how you show you are undependable and people get fired, broken up with, etc for these reasons.)

It is necessary to stick to the highest standards at all times, or things will fall apart. (see previous entry. High standards are why you can have pride in yourself. Who has pride in low standards?)

I need to be in complete control of my emotions. (Yeah, I should be, but I don't seem to have that down. People who can't control their emotions are weak. Stoic is a favorable adjective, emotional is a poor one. )

People should do things my way. (or at least to my standards, which is don't settle for complete crap, pay attention to detail, make an effort, have it look good. I don't think that is very unreasonable.)

If I don't perform at the highest level, I will fail. (Isn't failure not being good? I want to be at least good if not great at everything I do. I acknowledge my weak points (math, sports) but I also tend to avoid those activities, because I am not good at them. I don't perform well, and I am pretty much a failure at them.)

Flaws, defects, or mistakes are intolerable. (I don't know about intolerable, but they aren't desireable either.)

Details are extremely important. (EXTREMELY. Is it heaven or the devil that is in the details? Anyway, they are my weakness. I notice backgrounds, abnormalities, beauty, flaws. It's what I do. This, above anything else on this list. An out of place detail can really cause me to lose focus on everything else.)

My way of doing things is generally the best way (361). (Not 100% of the time, but most of the time, I like my ideas best because I really think things through. That sounds really bad, spoken out loud, I realize. But I can take the ideas that others have, find the flaws to elimiate them, and expound on them to make them better.)

Oh, and then there was THIS little blurb:

The Life Story Perspective

"Very often, people who develop the disorder by adulthood have had parents who are rigid, overbearing, and faultfinding. (HA!) The parents put pressure on these children to get control of themselves and to behave like little adults (or even like good little robots) rather than as independent, individual human beings. In order to be good and to gain their parents approval, the vulnerable children became trapped in an internal struggle to get control of the own "bad" or "dangerous" impulses, desires, and feelings. They develop into adults who are inwardly, perhaps unconsciously, angry, and outwardly very driven to achieve respect and approval" (Oldham & Morris, pg. 83).

I was definitely held to a different standard than my brothers were, that's for certain! I had to do most of the chores around the house, because my brothers didn't do them right. However, if I didn't do them right, or if I made the tiniest error, I would get beaten. Terribly unfair if you ask me.

Just goes to reinforce what I learned in therapy - everything bad in my life is the fault of my childhood/mother.


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