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Day 18: Always More



I can't believe it's been 18 days since I made the commitment not to pick at my skin. By and large, it's been a smashing success. If by success, I mean that my face is finally clear enough that I don't feel the need to go stare at it every six seconds.

I still...reach up to touch it. I have a big plug sitting in one of the pores on my damn nose. I have a couple of tiny plugs on my chin.

I hate them on the chin. Drives me bananas.

If by success, I mean: I'm twitching with irritation, because I hate hate hate that stupid little plug in my stupid nose pore and those plugs on my chin and I want then GONE, but I haven't tried to "scratch them out," then yes, it has been a success.

Success is hard. But it's not nearly as painful as picking my skin until I have painful, oozing, infected scabs, and I hate myself for making it happen yet again.

Here are my reasons for not picking my skin today.

I choose not to pick my skin:

  • Because my nose and my chin are fine exactly the way they are. My face is fine, scars and all. I am fine.
  • Because even if picking "works" to quell the irritation, the cost is too high. Like drinking sea water.
  • Because if picking doesn't work, the cost is astronomical. A puffy, painful, split-skin-layers-filled-with-blood wound the size of a nickel, if I'm lucky, or a quarter, if I'm not. And a scar to remind me of what I've done.
  • Because I don't have to pick. I can stop, if I want to. I get to decide.

One more thing:

When I feel the urge to pick, I think about everyone else on here who is going through this same thing, and it sincerely gives me strength and courage to know that I'm not alone in tackling this.


Hey, I've been reading you're blog and all I can say is I feel your pain! I know exactly what you're going through and totally agree that there's a huge difference between knowing you shouldn't pick and actually not feeling compelled to do it. I do the same skimming routine with my hands trying to discover any buggers in the early stages because I'm convinced if I get it out before the swelling has reached it's peak then it will be gone a lot quicker and I'll stop stressing about it! Pure madness i know...

You have had massive success so you're allowed to feel good about it! Even though it seems like the anxiety and compulsion are just building and building until you give in and pick they do eventually fade - you'll be distracted by something else or time will just pass and the pickable stuff will just heal itself.

Also, I read the entry about closing your eyes and I know what you mean, it's like our eyes are well trained experts in uncovering any hidden enemies or ones that are only just starting to surface! I know it sounds simple but maybe just stand a bit further away from the mirror, or squint a bit so you're not getting the full magnified zoom...plus I don't know about you but I have a compact that I'm constantly using to check my skin whilst I'm at my desk at work and I've started leaving it at home so that I actually have to get up and go to the toilets, which is useful for me because I'm a bit lazy so the effort of getting up momentarily outweighs the compulsion to check until the anxiety goes, always worth a try!

Anyways this is a bit long, but just wanted to offer a bit of encouragement because I know it sometimes feels like a lonely battle! Carry on the good work :)

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Aw...thank you. I feel for you too. And I completely get what you mean about the "madness." This effort has really marked a turning point for me in terms of how I approach not picking at my face. I'm going to write about it more in another entry but I want to say that one of the most important realizations for me has been making "not picking my face" The Number One Priority of All Time. By this I mean: I made a decision that I would do anything not to pick my face anymore. Whatever it takes. And I think that's what's made this possible.

Thanks for sharing what you're going through. And I love that you started leaving the compact at home. Some of this is about mental stamina and fortitude (see "Number One Priority" above) but I swear the other 50% is just about changing habits!

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