When I stop picking I will...
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People struggling with BFRBS such as as skin picking disorder often experience intense guilt and shame around their behavior and the resulting damage it causes the skin. This can have a detrimental impact on their self esteem and impact negatively on their social functioning, often avoiding enjoyable social situations for fear of being harshly judged. A common phrase used by people with skin picking disorder is "When I stop picking...". However a regular blogger over at Diary of a Skin Picker recently published a post stating that you shouldn't wait:
Don’t put off today’s happiness, for some imagined happiness tomorrow.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), which shows the greatest evidence of effectiveness in the treatment of BFRBs such as skin picking disorder, has many modalities, one of which is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). This form of therapy discourages the resistance of negative thoughts and emotions, instead teaching the client to ebrace them and accept that they are part of our human experience, but that the we have a choice in how we respond to them. The client is encourage to reflect on their personal values in life and to identify what occupations and behaviors are aligned with these. Clients often find that the very occupations they value is also the occupations most affected by their disorder. This becomes a vicious cycle whereby the more you avoid doing the things you love and enjoy, or avoid pursuing your passions due to skin picking; the more more likely you are to be mentally and emotionally unhealthy and therefore the more likely you are to engage in unhealthy defensive behaviors such as skin picking.
In the profession of Occupational Therapy the key core philosophy is that we can achieve wellbeing through engaging in meaningful occupation. The belief is that we are on a continuous path of development throughout the lifespan, and doing helps us fulfil who or what we want to become as human beings. Therefore instead of waiting till you have skin picking under control, perhaps it is doing what makes you happy and fulfills you that is what is needed to help you overcome skin picking in the first place. There is a well known saying that goes:
Life happens while you are making other plans
So live your best life!