40 Day Challenge! Count me in!


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February 18, 2010

I ended up already having to start over- I accidentally picked at a blister on my foot and a weird skin splinter thing. Well, better luck tomorrow! I also thought of finding an alternate, positive habit- like pushing back cuticles and cleaning under fingernails (already used that one to stop biting my nails). That always seemed to help me, just wanted to share.
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February 19, 2010

I just found this site after picking my arm ...... and getting really mad at myself .. I know that a lot of it's a mental thing... and I know that we all need to encourage others and get encouragement ourselves.. so I know that it is hard... but it is worth not doing/picking in the long run. Just think that a week from now how much better you'll feel about yourself! so.... good luck!
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February 19, 2010

is there a place to hear from ex-pickers to hear how success was achieved? was it through talk therapy? drugs? positive conditioning? negative conditioning? cold turkey? substituting behaviour(s)? what worked? so many people are having a hard time making it through one day let alone 40. or a lifetime. i'm bandaged up for the night yet again and i can't say many of my sores went untouched. :(
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March 05, 2010

hey rosie and fellow canuck !! how is it going with you? i've just committed to the 40 day plan as i've made it to DAY 10 !! i too hate wearing makeup (never wore it before this awful affliction) and the necessity to wear it has already lessened considerably. i hope you are doing well with the plan as well as with your business and studies. let us know how you are! ((hugs)) to you.
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March 05, 2010

My 40 day kinda fell apart yesterday. So I guess I should start at 1 again tomorrow. I'm printing off a 40 block chart to fill with stickers :P I feel like I'm 5 years old. Also, great idea with having the bathroom lit by candle light. I'm so doing that. Thanks everyone for your tips and support. This forum has been the closest thing to a cure for me so far.
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March 05, 2010

Oh and congrats to wildflower! 10 days is huge!
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March 05, 2010

so sorry to hear you need to start over. :( whatever tactics help to keep you on track, by all means use them. i agree about this forum being extremely helpful. It's comforting and encouraging to know we are not alone in our efforts and it's a great place to learn from each other and support one another. best wishes to you and ((hugs)). and thank you for the note of congrats :)
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March 13, 2010

how's it going for you, rosie? how are your studies going? are you making any headway with your commitment to your 40 day challenge? for me, i'm on DAY 18! i have changed my behaviours and yes, my thinking has definitely changed. i feel kinder to myself. yes, your post was informational and very helpful. i, too, hate wearing makeup. i never wore anything other than mascara before my skin eruptions and the following picking and then "had" to wear it and hated it. yesterday, i went out in the world without any makeup on and felt great. no one gave me sideways glances (that i noticed anyways) or made comments. it was great. my skin's not perfect yet, but it's getting there and i'm sure not putting junk on it helps. i sure hope you are doing well, with everything; your resolve to be good to your skin, your business, and your studies. much success to ya, fellow canuck! :):)
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March 13, 2010

Wildflower: How beaten up was your skin when you started your 40 days? Im on day 11 now and I'm not close to being able to go out without makeup. Some areas are ok to go without makeup but most aren't. Everything is healing and I have no bad sores after 11 days of not picking, but I still have lots of dark and red areas from where I picked before. How long did yours take to go away? I'm wondering if my skin started off worse than yours or if I can look forward to not wearing makeup in about 10 more days....? I think I'm going to post a photo of my face (blocking out my eyes) somewhere and post the link to the photo on here when I reach 40 days. This will give me incentive to be as kind to my skin as possible so my skin looks the best it can for the photo. Anyone else want to join me? Any ideas on where to put the photo to remain anonymous? Unrelated: I have gone through sooooo many candles now because I don't turn on the lights in the bathroom anymore. It's actually pretty nice. But it might get expensive. I average burning through 4 candles a day. But It is worth it. I would pay a psychologist much much more to help me, so the price of candles isn't too bad. So happy for you that you can feel comfortable without makeup. I can only imaging how good that would feel. Keep up the hard work! Only 2 days until 20! tip: wash your pillow cases AT LEAST once a week. Helps with heeling by keeping your face clean :)
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March 13, 2010

when i found this site i was wearing about 20 bandages on my face and neck alone per night. about the same number were required elsewhere on my body and could remain on longer than overnight as they were hidden by clothing. but the majority of the 20 face/neck bandages had to come off if i went out in public. i must say, though, i got desperate enough to heal some of them that i even left some on my face/neck when i went out, albeit they were not front and center but in less conspicuous locations yet still in view. some people made comments about them but i didn't let that get to me wanting more to heal than be concerned about vanity. right now, my healing spots that are still visible on my face are smallish and pink. there are about 12 and again, they are small but noticeable enough to be counted from a distance of 3' away. i had ones that were much more serious a while ago that would not look like these do, though, had i quit picking when they were at their worst. i had to seriously and aggressively approach healing those ones back then. that's when i began researching wound healing methods and natural topical antibiotics (since i'm allergic to neo and polysporin topicals and the like) and vitamins and nutrients that would assist me with the wounds i had at the time. getting them "over the hump" and healed spurred me on to research more even though i still picked. my skin was bad but not the worst it had been when i found this site and got on the bandwagon of addressing the self damage aspect. i suspect you've begun it with your skin at a worse stage but am positive your issues will lessen with each passing day. it's FABULOUS that you are on day 11 (i was still wearing makeup too) and that it's only been with the expense of candles !! that proves that this effort doesn't have to be expensive. it just needs committed focus. stay with it. you're doing great. soon you won't need the candles because when you look at yourself you will be looking with pride and care and love for your efforts and results. :):) edit: your tip is great - cleanliness is extremely important.
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April 20, 2010

I want to try this 40 day challenge. I have been picking my face for over 20 years. I need to start trying very hard to beat this terrible habit. I need to stop touching my face all the time. I do at work, in the car just about everywhere. I try to feel if I have any bumps on my face and then there is my bathroom or any bathroom mirror. I am taking this 40 day challenge. Thanks
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April 21, 2010

hey everyone i just found this website today. After having someone ask me why i pick at my face today and being shocked that it was that obvious. i thought people just thought i had acne or exma. i think i thought that too. so i googled (thankyou once again google) "picking at skin" and all this info came up and i was shocked. I finally feel like I have the information and a name for it, and the knowledge that there are others out there who feel the same. I constantly pick at the skin on my face. Im 24 and have a lil acne but i pick at it and my pores til they are inflamed and bleed, i pick at my chest and scalp sometimes too. Usually i do it without knowing like watching tv or driving or even lying in bed (i may even do it in my sleep i think). I work on a boat and getting therapy isnt an option for me so this 40day challange is all i have. Im starting tomorrow Day 1. I will try visit the forum regularly and veiw everyones updates and post my own. WIsh me luck :-) Lara
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April 21, 2010

I am in the exact same boat so to speak:) I do the exact same things as you do. I wish you all the best. Manon
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April 21, 2010

So day 1 started today and im amazed at how often i reach for my face without thinking about it. I look in the mirror and instantly think about picking something, thinking about it i somehow beleive that my picking at it im making it look better, helping it heal, but actually in reality im making it worse, shouldnt that be obvious? I also find that i reach for my face every time i go to the toilet (sorry to be so frank) and if im making lists or working out accounts the urge to pick is almost overwhelming. Im going to cut my fingernails off today and ive unscrewed the fluro bulbs in my bathroom (seems to show up inperfections with them on). Day 40 is a long way to go
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April 21, 2010

yes, it is amazing when we realize the grip this compulsion has had on us. and incredible the distortion our justification for doing it has been. we've been in denial for so long and now, with awareness, it is astonishing what we've been doing as opposed to what we should be doing. and even more so, how hard it is to turn things around. but, it "is" possible to do it. with clear rational thinking, sound information, a good regimen, a plan, tactics, support and most of all determination, it is possible and so rewarding. take it one day at a time and 40 will creep up on ya !! just wait until about day 20 and see the rewards !!
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April 23, 2010

hey thanks so much for the support, its so nice to have everyone doing it at the same time and at different stages. I am at day 3 now. I told my husband yesterday about what info i had found online and the 40 day challange. He was very supportive but not very surprised like i was. I felt a little deflated actually that he wasnt surprised. he said that its just given a name to something he knew was a problem all along. I cant beleive Ive been so blind in thinking that nobody really noticed and just thought i had "bad skin". Im excited to prove to myself that i have "good healthy skin". It might help drum it into me that the only reason i have "bad skin" is me. I am finding it hard to mosturise my face. I've decided not to do it in front of the mirror. it makes it easier but i still have to think hard to only use my fingertips. Its so so tempting though, I can still feel every bump and imperfection. BRING ON DAY 40!
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April 23, 2010

you're very welcome! it is so very encouraging to each of us to hear about enthusiastic determination in the making. as for moisturizing, i never ever felt the benefits of the various products i'd tried until i tried nature's bounty vitamin e oil. none of the others seemed to last. this one is comprised of a number of oils, one being lemon oil and it smells so lovely going on and because of the ratio of other oils in it it doesn't seem too too oily, just adequately so and i'm realizing its importance. i apply it right after my final rinse with cool water and it feels so calming and glides over all the imperfections such that they hardly seem noticeable. the oil was purchased at rite aid pharmacy if you live in the states. i love your determination! all the best to you !!
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April 22, 2010

i never realized how often my hands travel to my face until i started trying not to pick... it's like, whenever i am idle, my hands search for wounds to pick. it's insane! i think a lot of us have experienced the idea that we're somehow making things better by picking -- i guess we just have to keep drilling it in our heads that we are HARMING ourselves. there is not a single hint of helpfulness in our actions! but yeah, it's hard for me to grasp that too... hang in there! stay strong! keep us updated on your progress and please share any tips for things that work for you!
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April 22, 2010

you're absolutely right with everything you're saying! my hands still gravitate to my face !! using skype with a web cam you see a small image of yourself as well as a large image of who you are skyping with and i chuckle to myself seeing my hands rub my nose, or touch my cheek, or scratch my scalp. fortunately, i'm not touching my skin in a harming fashion now and that's the main thing. if we need to touch, we need to touch gently. over time, the wounds heal and it's actually nice to feel skin with no scabs.
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April 21, 2010

I will be getting off work soon and I think I may have touched my face about a dozen times if not more. I have a few little bumps but I am determined not to pick when I get home. I hope I can do it and not pick my face. Not one day has gone by without me picking my face. It will be hard. the evenings are always the toughest times of day for me. I need to avoid the bathroom mirror and keep my hands off my face. This is going to be so hard. I hope I can get through this day without picking. If I do I will have gone a whole day without picking. This 40 day challenge will be one of the biggest challenges for me.
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April 21, 2010

were i you, as soon as i was home and in for the day i would clean my skin and put bandages on. at least when your fingers go to your face there's nothing to pick and nothing gets contaminated either. the longer bandages are on, the better the healing beneath them is. i can't speak highly enough about the role of bandaging up my sores and temptations in the process of keeping my fingers away from them and allowing my skin to heal with fewer scars. apologies if my repeating myself is annoying.
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April 21, 2010

Thanks. You are not repeating yourself. I need all the help I can get. I'm from Toronto, Canada
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April 21, 2010

i'm not far from you. niagara falls !! and i do tend to repeat myself. lol
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April 21, 2010

I love Niagara Falls. My 7 year old son loves Marineland and so do I? Yoiu are close enough to benefit from getting season passes. :-)
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April 21, 2010

i am close enough for sure but my kids are grown. i've not been there in about 15 years !!
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April 22, 2010

Today is day2 for me. When I got home last night I took a shower washed my face and moisturized. I did however pick a couple of spots but it wasn't a big deal. I stopped myself before it was too late. I need to not pick at all. Self-control and determination. I feel and start to look much better when I don't pick, at this point so much because I did pick last night but not as much as I usually do. Today I will try my hardest to not pick at all. I am determined to beat this. I feel excited when I say this but at the same time I have said this many times but this is my first time I am taking a 40 day challenge and finding this forum full of support. It's great! Thanks
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April 22, 2010

it is great that you sound very determined and are building up to no picking at all. that is what it takes. zero tolerance. a little will almost always lead to a lot. i hope your determination will get you there soon. <3 <3 <3
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April 22, 2010

bummer. i know the rules. zero tolerance to picking of any kind - no picking, no scratching, no squeezing, no tools. now i realize that i allowed my washcloth of all things to become a tool. i scrubbed too vigorously thinking, justifying, that it was "just" exfoliation and did manage to get two white heads off of my chin that were "bugging" me. bad idea. one was probably ready but the other was not and just got very sore and weepy and did not heal up right away like the other one and now i'll have to keep it bandaged nightly. it's smack dab in the middle of my chin a bit under my lip so i won't wear a bandage on it out in public so it won't heal as quickly as it would if i could keep a bandage on it. i need to stick to the rules and i didn't so consider this a setback and will get back into the program a little bit wiser. i was not gentle and will be gentler because now i have a sore that needs to heal and i much prefer my skin all healed. so, back to day one today. i messed up on day six and will strive again for 40, one day at a time. i think it does require that thinking every day. today i will not pick. today i will do no harm. today i will be good to my skin. i can and will be loving to myself despite my anxieties and trials.
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April 24, 2010

so far, so good, on this 2/40 days. i had to use makeup because my skin didn't like the bandage and gave a reaction. perhaps there was still a slight oil residue or my skin is just getting tired of the bandages. it left an inch diameter round spot on my chin and i had to cover that up. i was feeling so free with not having to wear makeup. dang. i put an anti-inflamatory ointment on it now and my vitamin e oil everywhere else as a moisturizer so i'm pretty sure i'll keep my fingers off my skin for a successful day 2. i'm kicking myself because i really enjoyed my healed skin and it appears this will be slow healing. all you young 'uns, listen up. your skin heals quickly now but it won't later, so nip the compulsion in the bud now so you'll have better skin later, and better skin longer. :)
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April 25, 2010

haha wildflower soooooo true. "alll you young 'uns, listen up. your skin heals quickly now but it won't later, so nip the compulsion in the bud now so you'll have better skin later, and better skin longer" AMEN! I really like this quote as well ... "Watch your thoughts, they become words. Watch your words, they become actions. Watch your actions, they become habits. Watch your habits, they become your character. Watch your character, it becomes your destiny." :)
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April 25, 2010

thank you, andlove "your" quote !! why don't you start a new topic of quotes with it so it stays in the lead post? it can be a place for adding inspirational and thought provoking messages by each of us.
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April 23, 2010

I failed today. I got home from work and after talking to my husband I went into the bathroom to get ready to take shower and there I was picking. This is so hard I'm sitting here at the computer just wanting to touch my face and pick whatever I can find. I get something out of it and I don't know what that is. I feel like I do not want to have anything in my pores even if it is suppose to be there; This is soooo hard for me. I can't even go one day without picking! What can I do? I have to start all over again. I am taking this 40 day challenge starting right now. My compulsivness to want to pick is so strong right now.
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April 23, 2010

You can go one day im sure! think about where you pick and make a list. Then try and think of other things to do to conteract it. If you pick infront of the mirror either block up your mirror or force yourself to stand far away from it in a dimmly lit bathroom. If you pick infront of the tv or computer then keep your fingers busy, ive tried a squishy ball, turning my ring, this weird flicking/clicking my fingernail tips works best for me. I know you can do it, prove it to yourself! and keep us updated
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April 24, 2010

it really is difficult. i know. i'm still touching my face countless times a day and have to say things to my self like "don't pick!", "careful now", "both hands on the wheel", "sit on that hand", and the like. it really is insidious. it takes a lot of self talk and self control. try to keep away from your bathroom as much as possible. put a night light in it so that there's just enough light for you to do what's necessary in there and leave without checking yourself. try to have the only time you're in front of the mirror be when washing in the morning and at night and make your routine such that picking just isn't in it. be strong with yourself and don't let yourself give in. each time you don't let it happen is a huge success. put stars on your calendar for every success. you can do it.
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April 23, 2010

I just registered on the site, and this is my declaration to take this 40 day challenge. I'm going to buy a bracelet to remind me about my commitment, and maybe that will help.
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April 23, 2010

Good luck! everyone on here has different tips that are helping me along, you should check them out.
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April 24, 2010

welcome semisweetsarea to the 40 day challenge. it's great to have you here. the bracelet idea is a good one. use any and every tactic you believe will help you with this and keep determined. all the best to you.
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April 23, 2010

I read this forum the other night, after living with CSP since I was 12 (I am 23 now), I am taking a real stand. I have tried to stop my picking compulsions for a couple years now, but with the help of my fiancé I am really doing it. I've gone 24 hours now, which is the longest I've ever gone without picking since I was 12. I am writing a blog every day to write down how I was feeling that day to document my experiences with overcoming something like this. I hope that it will show other people like us that don't think that they can stop, that there are other people out there that are going through the same things, and have overcome it (like you all showed me). Here is the blog: http://thepicker.tumblr.com/. -Thanks for inspiring me!-
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April 24, 2010

welcome, lindsayb. it's great to have another person determined to beat this disorder in the 40 day challenge. it's very inspiring to hear you sound so committed. that's what it'll take above all else. determined commitment and it sounds like you have it. all the best to you.
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April 25, 2010

way to go LindsayB!! i look forward to reading your blog and your progress :)
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April 24, 2010

Ok, I have prom in about 40 days and I want to look stunning. So I’m starting today. Not picking is easier when I have incentive. I already picked at my face today though, so I guess today won’t count in my 40 days, but I still won’t pick again today. I want to be able to feel like the prettiest girl at prom. I know the only way that I’ll feel this way is if I have flawless skin. When I started high school I expected to stop picking by the time I reached grade twelve. But this obviously didn’t happen. So let’s pledge to stop before I finish high school. If it becomes too difficult at least before I start university. Remember: anything is possible for you Sara, if you set your heart and mind to it. xox
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April 24, 2010

it would be lovely for you to have your skin clear in time for your prom. pull it together and make each day count. hopefully, it truly is time for change for you. and every day after the prom too. :)
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April 24, 2010

Wow. Reading this almost brought me to tears. I have been picking for as long as I can remember. When I was a little girl I would sit for hours picking away at every little scar and scab I could find. I would chew my nails until they bled, and often got infections. 21 years or so later, I still have scars on my legs and arms and back and stomach from picking, and I STILL haven't stopped! It gets worse when I am stressed.. but most of the time I do it out of habit. Without realizing it. Whenever I look in the mirror I see the scars and think how can I fix this. I want beautiful clear skin like my mother and sisters.. I think that I am ready to take on the 40 Day Challenge!
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April 25, 2010

welcome aboard. it's great that you have good skin in your family as that in itself is inspirational with its indication of results in your future. all the best to you !!
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April 25, 2010

Thank you, Im sure that being part of these forums will help alot as well :)
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April 25, 2010

I know I JUST posted, but something else came to mind as I was sitting around watching TV. Earlier, I went past the mirror in my bathroom, and looked at myself examined my scars and scabs and wrinkled my nose. I reminded myself that I had to keep to the 40 Day Challenge. Again a few seconds ago I raised my hand to pick something on my ear, and had to remind myself about the challenge.. So far so good! This should be interesting.. Im going to write reminders on my mirror :D
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April 25, 2010

yes, indeed. being part of a challenge that others are also involved with is a good motivator for sure. even one of your own is good, but this is better. although we must be careful to not let others successes get us down on ourselves, nor must we not let others' setbacks allow us to let up on our determination. about the bathroom, try to keep the lights dimmed so your less likely to do the "inspection". except of course for the morning and night time cleansing routine. a night light is helpful that way. also keeping something in your hands while watching tv or other such idle time prevents exploring hands and so does sitting on your hands !! :) it is amazing how many times we touch our skin, isn't it?
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April 25, 2010

a warm hello to all you beautiful people =) i am brand new to this forum =) so i will do a brief introduction............ i am currently about to graduate college with a psychology degree. after 7 years of picking my face...morning, noon and night....i am finally taking steps to overcome this terrible addiction. this is my first time posting...and i would just like to say ... WE CAN DO THIS. we should do this. we can beat this. we will beat this. mind over matter. obviously it will be hard. but tomorrow, like many of you have blogged and inspired me to do..... i am going to start this 40 day challenge.. and hopefully, at the end of 40 days ... the monstrous urge that takes over when i head for the nearest mirror to pick every imperfection on my face ... will be dead and gone for LIFE. blessings and all my love to you! we are precious and here for a reason... to live life to the FULLEST ... TO BE FREE.
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April 25, 2010

welcome !! what a wonderful positive inspiring post! it will be great to have you aboard. i'm 100% with you and everything that you say. here's to success for all of us !!
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April 27, 2010

Im joining in the 40 day challenge if thats ok? I didnt do so well today so day 1 for me tomorrow. But this time im more prepared. :) Bring it on. We can beat this!

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