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I saw this concept posted elsewhere and although it related to self-harm, I altered it a little for our purposes as I think it could be applied to our struggles with skin picking. Here's the idea...

The rules are:

  1. When you feel like you want to pick, take a marker/sharpie and draw a butterfly on your hand or arm.

  2. Name that butterfly after a loved one, a friend, or someone who wants you to stop picking.

  3. You must let the butterfly fade naturally and can't wash it off.

  4. If you pick before the butterfly has faded, it "dies".

  5. The object of this is to let your butterfly see out its natural existence on your hand or arm.

  6. Once it fades, you could draw another and repeat the process.

I think I'll give this a go. I'm at low point right now with picking as, even though I cleared my acne for the most part, I started picking again and have just been picking at my face for the last couple of weeks straight. Essentially been creating wounds from nothing and I feel pretty bad, shut away and stuck in front of the mirror obsessing about it all the time. sad.png At least if I aim to take care of my sharpie butterfly, this might be kind of a creative and lighthearted way for me to curb picking and things might improve...

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A creative way to be mindful, and having the positive association attached to the butterfly should help gear the picker towards delayed gratification and mindfulness. Good idea Paul!

Picking can be a hard habit to break, I think there's a tendancy to just do it habitually for anyone who has persistant outbreaks. Really, any habit or ritual can be hard to break. It's all about being consistent! I think I might adopt this to keeping the house clean, using my agenda, and taking more time out of the day to just relax and unwind, and one for good skin habits. Problem is, I can't draw :lol:

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I'm trying this out, so far it's working really well! I've named my butterfly Schmett. :D It's not as stunning as your butterfly though, mine's sort of a stick with wings and antennae. xD I'll be following to see how well this works for you. Good luck!

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Hope it works for you, Nilan! smile.png

My butterfly faded after four days, although I technically "killed" it on the third day. I picked at my nose a little after I shaved that day. Spending that extra period of time looking in the mirror triggered it, absentmindedly paying attention to the pores on my nose while shaving. I don't usually do any damage there and my pores aren't really that bad at all, they just annoy me sometimes. So even though that instance of picking has proven harmless and isolated, I guess I still have to count it in line with the rules... It wasn't so bad, I was getting fed up of people asking my I'd drawn a butterfly on my hand anyway! lol.gif I need to draw another one. Think I'll do a smaller, more discreet one on my palm. I figured it doesn't matter if they wash off after just a couple of days because a couple of days not picking, followed by a couple more, and a couple more... eventually adds up to lost of days without picking...

I went totally crazy with picking not so long ago. The damage I caused when I picked my face to pieces three weeks ago only just healed last weekend and I'd hidden away at home until then. Now that the damage has healed and the visible signs have all but gone, I have a clean slate to start with again and hopefully I can keep it up. I've probably been trying to get a handle on my picking for about a year now and failed in a major way several times. But the more that happened, the more I started to build a picture of what triggers picking so I need to do my best to keep those things under control; feel as good about myself as I possible can; think less about my skin; not worry so much about my appearance and how I'm perceived by others; keep busy so that I'm not bored; minimise situations where I feel anxious, stressed or insecure... I'll figure it out eventually, as I'm sure we all will. smile.png

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My butterfly faded after four days, although I technically "killed" it on the third day.


Cool idea, Interesting idea. Might try it but will probably replace the butterfly with something less... Well... Yeah :)

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A bottle of beer. Or a football. Or a naked woman.

You could always make it a manly butterfly, give it a face with a beard or something. lol.gif

I drew another one a couple of days after I last posted and that faded naturally, I didn't pick at all for about five days. Then after a short spell, I went eleven days without picking. Bit of a rough patch last weekend but I got away with that as far as damage was concerned and that's all healed nicely already.

I'm more than half way there I think, aided immensely back the fact that I don't breakout much these days. Now I just need to get out of the habit of looking at my face so much and putting negative focus on it, stop seeing things that aren't there, and stop seeing things as being so much worse than they actually are. Sure it'll happen in time.


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