So, let me start off by saying I am the luckiest person in the world and I still keep pressing my luck. I was an absolute idiot. One week before my brother's wedding, I picked my arms so bad. For no reason at all! I spent the entire week dreading the strapless dress. Dreading walking down the aisle. I ended up not looking too terrible (didn't look great either) but it ended up being fine, with some makeup on it. But that doesn't take back the fact that I sulked the entire week and stressed and did not enjoy things to the fullest. I spent more money that I didnt have to buy clothes that would cover my arms. I was stressed about my long distance fiance coming to visit. I didn't full enjoy having him here. That's how my life has been for the past 10+ years. I enjoy things but I am not living to my fullest. There is always that one thing (my face, back, etc) holding me back. It has to stop!
Now, the focus is on me for my wedding in 290 days. That is plenty of time to get my skin into a state that I am pleased with. But, I am going about it all wrong. I am spending way too much money trying to find a miracle product that doesn't exist. I think I have decided that I should take that money that I am spending for products and invest it in something good for my mind. I need to do yoga, focus on church and just try to be a better person. Instead of spending $90 on a vitamin A cream that breaks me out more. I am an idiot.
Well, that's enough with the self deprication. I am not an idiot. I have a mental problem. I have OCD tendencies and major anxiety issues. I feel this constant need to get my pores clean. It's an obsessive thought that never leaves me. If I get the junk out of my pores, then I can shrink the pore and it will never get clogged again. Wrong. Picking and scrubbing and scratching at whiteheads, blackheads and what not has NEVER helped. Why can't I get that through my head?
So, my plan is to stop focusing on my face. Stop with the buying new products. I will use what I have now. I mean I have a wedding to save for, spending my entire paychecks on my skin is ridiculous.
I have accepted that my skin will not be perfect. But, I can be "perfect" in other ways. I will focus on making my curly hair healthy and pretty. And dressing nicer so I feel more confident. Matching my clothes, accessoring more. And there is no need to buy more clothes, because I have enough! Just a matter of wearing them differently.
I am praying that this is the last time I will say "this is it." God, I hope this is it. I have so much going for me, but I obsess about everything going wrong. I am going to obsess about everything going right for me. Here's the two lists:
-fiance is away
-face is a mess
-shoulders are a mess
-don't know what to do for a career/grad school
-not enough money for a wedding
-have to go to Michelle's wedding alone
-I have a wonderful fiance who cares about me more than anything
-I am going to have a beautiful wedding
-I am going on a wonderful honeymoon
-my skin can heal and I have time to make it heal before the wedding, if I STOP PICKING it
-I have too many options for grad school/work and other people have none
-I have amazing parents who would die for me and they want to help pay for the wedding
-Being alone for the wedding is a matter of my confidence. I will go alone and have fun and if I feel wierd, I'll leave. No harm done, life goes on
-I have made good connections at work with people, despite rude people
The right definitely outnumbers the wrong. I need to change my state of mind. I need to get my mind healthy and the body will follow. So, I will not call myself an idiot anymore. I am just not well, but I can get myself well. Positivity is the new mindset.
Ultimately, why am I here on Earth? I want to help people. One person, many people, it doesn't matter. I just want to help someone. I want to be a good, loving wife and take care of my husband and start a good home and raise good kids and be a good mother. I want people to like being around me because they know I am a kind, sweet person. If I am focusing on my face for the rest of my life, this won't happen. I want to live life to the fullest!
1. Identify the problem- obsessive skin picking
2. Identify the triggers- tired, emotional, stressed, anxious
3. Analyze the consequences- embarassment, shame, guilt, being gross and unconfident for my wedding and brother's wedding
4. Uncover the internal cues that perpetuate habits- must be perfect, i'll just squeeze one, i have to get the infection out
5. Set goals for a habit-free lifestyle - a good career, a beautiful and confident wedding and honeymoon
6. Learn and reinforce more benign tension relievers - stretch, pray, breathe
7. Get support for change -hard one. i guess i have some
8. Maintain gains -the squeezing has been less and less... i suppose i can celebrate that
9. Learn how diet and exercise can help -keep exercising and drinking lots of water
10. Avoid relapse -have yet to accomplish this
Part of successful habit reversal is documenting the process. Create a Daily Progress Log for yourself. Make notes every day on the following:
Type of Urge(s) Felt
How You Are Feeling
What your Strategy is to Combat the urge(s)
What You Did
What you could have done instead
How you Felt Afterwards
so i woke up early to exercise and get breakfast before work. and i ended up squeezing my face. am i an absolute idiot? what is wrong with me? i worked last night and my skin didnt look too bad. and now it looks terrible. people know what i do. they know i squeeze and pick and it is so embarassing. now i have to go to work and look terrible. i am such an idiot. my face is all puffy and red and i cannot hide what i did. i seriously have not gone one day since like january without squeezing anything. i also picked my arms and i have a wedding that i am in in 2 weeks. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? why cant i stop???? it is so ridiculous now its not even funny. i am going to have to pile on more makeup and look stupid and it will probably cause more breakouts. i am an idiot and i am so mad at myself.
so I was looking good. Then I went away on vacation and that was not good for my skin. In addition to the stress from traveling, the inlaws and the emotional stress, I also sweat like crazy and the sunblock I'm sure was too heavy for my skin. Also, I had my peiod, so of course, the cystic pimples had to pop up.
So, each day on vacation, a new pimple popped up. My jawline and chin and forhead suffered the most. I sort of picked even on vacation when i had to share a bathroom with other people. so embarassing. The enflamed bleeding red marks. Why couldn't I leave well enough alone? I am so gross!
Now I am home, back with all of my products. so I am trying to gain control. I have picked my shoulders and chest and last night I picked my face. I have about 24 spots and I picked most of those.
So I went to sleep with a sulfur mask. I think it might have helped, but I don't really know.
Here I go again. I forgive myself. I got off track for a week and I need to get myself straightened out. I am in a wedding in 25 days and I have to put my hair up and wear a strapless dress. I want to feel confident about that. 25 days left. I can do it.
I need to get the perfect regimine for my skin. I am on the right track, but it needs tweaking. So lets try to lay it out.
For weeks when I don't have my period:
1. cleanse with cosmedix cleanser
2. phillip's milk of magnesia
3. cerave spf 15 moisturizer
1. cleanse with AHA cleanser
2. glycolic acid
3. spot treat with bp if needed
1. cleanse with cosmedix cleanser
Week of period still needs some consideration. I tried doing bp when I had my period but dried up terribly. I'll need to come up with something else to do.
Well, I was not as successful as I would have like to be. Let me see if I can quantify what is going on with my face.
I would say I have about I have about 25 pimples/spots on my face total and I picked at about 10 of them. Not a bad night for me, believe it or not. But I want to not pick at all! This will set me back, I know it. Ugh.
I guess I will apply my glycolic acid and try to do better tomorrow. The good thing is that there is a tomorrow and another chance to change.
I think I may have picked because I was stressed tonight. Work was terrible and the mood I was in at work lingered when I got home.
Overall, of course I am not proud of myself, but tonight was an improvement over last night so I should celebrate that. I also did not pick at my shoulders or chest. So that was good.
"If something seems like an uphill battle, just think of the view from the top."
I don't know how many times I have said, this is it. This is the end of my picking. It has been an ongoing problem for too many years and I am at the end of my rope. My life cannot be on hold anymore while I deal with scars, scabs, and oozing pimples. This is the last straw and I am done with picking. I need to be.
I pick when I am stressed, anxious, tired, procrastinating or upset. It has become a release and that is not good. I know my triggers, but I can't beat them.
I need to come up with some replacement habits and some other way to release my feelings and keep my nervous energy under control.
Two things that help are timing myself when I am in the bathroom. I will set my stopwatch on my phone to 10 minutes. In those 10 minutes I need to do everything that I normally do to get ready for bed. In fact, I might give myself less time and if I can trust myself, I will up it to 10. Tonight I will start with 7. I will also not turn on the light in the bathroom. I will use the light of the night light. Less light means I cannot sit there and examine my face and find things to pick. Tonight- 7 minutes and less light. It's a start.
I need to find some replacement habits. Some things that will be healthy. I need to think about this one.
This problem is not restricted to just my face. I also pick my shoulders and back as well. Which takes some effort. But I will sit on the vanity just so I can see if my back is breaking out and I will scratch those pimples away, because it will "help." THis is how I justify picking to myself. I am would rather hide red marks with makeup than enflamed pimples. But everytime I squeeze, I am prolonging the life of the pimple.
If a pimple pops up, it will be gone in about 10 days if not touched. If popped, it might go away faster, but the bacteria is forced further and the results are detrimental. That one pimple might send you into a tail spin for months.
This is my vow, this is it. I am done living my life this way. I will gain control.
Tonight will be the starting point. I squeezed last night, so tonight is the night. I will update later.