Am I just a little bit OCD?
Posted by Wellbeing People on 15 May, 2018
I’m re-folding the washing AGAIN. The children’s t-shirts have to resemble a pile that you would find in an M&S store or I cannot rest. “It’s just the way it is” I tell my husband as he walks off to make tea (I’m close to providing a colour chart).
Although probably a bit strange to some, these little things bug me but I do have an underlying ‘method to my madness’ – if I can avoid an iron I’m a happy lady, so the neat folding gives way for an easier future in my mind… and as a busy mum, my tea is IMPORTANT! But it leaves me wondering, do I have OCD?
It’s so easy to label our foibles as ‘a little bit OCD’, it has become almost a form of light hearted teasing, but what is OCD? And what does it mean for someone who is actually suffering from OCD?
OCD or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
OCD is a mental health condition which can be extremely debilitating. Put simply, it causes an individual to have an obsession with something and a compulsion to put it right in some way. For example, an obsession about cleanliness or the presence of germs and therefore a compulsion to wash repeatedly or more frequently than needed.
It can affect people of any age or gender but it typically develops in early adulthood and is often coupled with depression, anxiety or eating disorders.
So what are the symptoms?
Repeated actions directed at reducing uncontrollable concerns regarding safety/security, for example:
- Hygiene > repeated washing
- Safety > repeated checking of locks/appliances
- Disorder > compulsion with ‘just so’
- Shortage > hoarding
- Guilt > perfectionism
The repetitive actions and rituals associated with the condition serve to reduce uncontrollable concerns over safety and security, but at the expense of the sufferer becoming incapable of doing anything else. OCD generally gets worse if left untreated.
What to do if you think you or someone you know is suffering from OCD:
- Be sympathetic, recognise that something’s not quite right
- Allow for it, so they feel more relaxed at work
- If appropriate, delicately coax them to seek help from a medical professional (or seek help for yourself)
Below are some helpful links to find out more information about OCD
Wellbeing People believe that giving employees the right tools, knowledge and support is vital for the maintenance of good mental health. Wellbeing People run many workshops around mental health issues and awareness, take a look at the various topics we cover in order to help promote good mental health within the workplace.