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Saturday, 22 April 2017

Being neurotic

Oh my god, every time I ask her to hang out she says she's busy. She hates me. Is she avoiding me?
My god, that annoying guy who keeps messaging me won't leave me alone, yet I can barely figure out the cute funny one. Why won't he reply to my messages? It's been twenty minutes and still nothing!
Where the fuck did I put my keys? Oh god, I've lost my guitar capo. I've ransacked my entire room and I still can't find it. No, no, no; I can't answer my phone now I'm in the middle of a crisis! Fuck my earrings won't go in. I'm such a mess. And now I'm having a panic attack. Ok, breathe...
HOW THE FUCK HAS MY HAIR GONE FROM RED TO GINGER?! I might as well be renamed carrot top. Oh no, why is that woman on the bus looking at me like that? Do I smell? Am I a terrible person? Am I evil? DOES EVERYONE HATE ME???!!! 

Naturally, like with any personality characteristic, we all experience moments of neurosis in our lives and some people are more or less neurotic than others. Neurotic in its simplest form means emotionally unstable. Over-thinking; over-analysing, obsessing over minor details, blowing things out of proportion, experiencing depression or anxiety, being a perfectionist, having obsessive
compulsive disorder, being irritable over little things, or being co-dependent are all characteristics of a neurotic. The opposite of a neurotic would be someone who is balanced and stable. A simpleton. A happy-go-lucky motherfucker who easily breezes through life, doesn’t worry or obsess constantly over things or create major problems in their head, doesn’t assume that everyone in the world hates them or that they’re going to die young, and just gets on with things. If you were to say to a non-neurotic ‘I’ve been feeling depressed and thinking about killing myself’ they would either stare at you blankly or say ‘why would you want to kill yourself?!’ as if it were the craziest idea in the world.

Neurosis can be managed; if you are a neurotic person like me you will never truly be able to shake it all off, but you will be able to make it slightly more manageable. I’ve been told by several people that I over-think a lot; I over-analyse, I’ve had sleep problems since I was a child because of it, I put myself under a lot of pressure and try to get things right all the time. This was a major problem during my A levels; for Gods’ sake I got two A’s and a B and beat myself up over not getting three A’s. I was throwing essay after essay at all my teachers, desperately hoping to get the highest marks possible and getting miserable over one tiny little wrong thing.

When I was in secondary school and came home to an empty house I used to spent around 10 minutes walking around the house with a stick to make sure there weren’t any intruders. Growing up my dad got my brother and me to watch Crimewatch; I liked it a lot and found it interesting, but I still get super paranoid walking down the street in the dark. I look around constantly, assume that any guy walking behind me could be a potential rapist, and I still run down the street to my house late at night because I’m scared I might get attacked. I get super upset with people over non-existent problems I’ve created in my head. I constantly worry that people can't stand me or are going to change their minds over set plans or are leaving me out of things or talking shit about me behind my back.

I believe its normal for highly intelligent or highly creative people to be more neurotic than a person of average intelligence. A good example of a neurotic person is Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory. Our brains work super fast and are super productive, but sadly that can be channeled negatively as
well as positively. Between 2013 and now I’ve filled over thirty A5 meant-to-last-a-year diaries due to writing about ten pages a day (twenty sides). Some of them have created quite useful blog material, but a lot of it is repetitive nonsense. Even I get sick of my own thoughts. And yes, I’ve had lots of therapy; I’m even in AA which is a great excuse to babble about myself in a room full of strangers a few times a week. Luckily I’m cutting down on the diary entries now that my head’s calming down a bit; I’ve gone from filling one A5 diary in one month to three months. Of course a normal person would buy one A5 diary and have it last a year, not a month or two. Even with this blog; I write one or two posts a day, but of course I don’t want to publish a post a day else I’d wear myself out and by now have over a hundred posts published. After all, I’ve only had this blog for four months.

Neurotic people tend to be obsessed with ourselves; not in a narcissistic way, but in the sense that we can’t get out of our heads. Everything revolves around self, hence the taking-everything-to-heart. The way to combat this is firstly to breathe, and then to step out of yourself and remember that we are all part of the same universe. We're all matter and we all matter. Self-obsession can drive one mad and to suicide in many cases, but we don’t want that happening now do we, my dear? So relax, try to let go and accept things the way they are. (Easier said than done, of course). And if you know a person who is neurotic, try to be a bit sympathetic. We’re all different, after all.

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