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Question
Posted by: Obsessed | 2011/03/04

small things bother


I get irritated easily. Noises in the office, traffic, sounds people make while eating really gets to me.

In general I want everyone to play by the rules, but I know this is not how life works. Things which upset me most is when people violate accepted norms or act uncourteously - like cutting in line or paying for 30 items at the express queue - effectively stealing my time. These things stress me up and I don''t know how to relax about it.

I did talk to a psychologist a while back but these sessions I found to be fuzzy and aerie faerie and not really helpful, I''m a classic type C. I feel it is the same as to ask me to be ignorant of other people''s inconsiderations, but it affects me. Most people can''t be bothered whether the car in front of you in traffic signals when switching lanes - but it gets to me.

I also have obsessions about aesthetics and require my living space to be spotless. These anxieties, I fear, might lead to my premature death.

How should I go about, should I try CBT or medication? I''m 23 years old and I think it is getting worse with age - i need to do something about it.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Good responses from other readers. Try to let go and recognize that the irritation need not be automatic and unavoidable. You know there will always be selfish idiots who won't play by the rules, and some were never taught any coherent or social rules by their similarly lacking parents. Does it need to matter so much that they "steal" some of your time ? Rather that than do as you now do, and allow them to steal your peace and serenity.
It's not a question of not noticing that they are selfish and inconsiderate, but of choosing what way of responding to that, is most useful for you. YOur fuming for an hour or two, growing ulcers and biting your nails won't transform them into model citizens.
Sounds like you previously chatted to the wrong sort of psychologist, as some indeed are too airy fairy to be useful.
When you mention being so obsessive about your living space, it sounds as though there may be an element of OCD as well, and this can be well helped by CBT, and the CBT therapist could recommend whether medication in addition might be useful
Remember the wise old prayer : "Lord, give me the strength to change what I need to and can change ; the strength to live with what i can't change, and the wisdom to be able to tell the difference"

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3
Our users say:
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/03/05

Good responses from other readers. Try to let go and recognize that the irritation need not be automatic and unavoidable. You know there will always be selfish idiots who won't play by the rules, and some were never taught any coherent or social rules by their similarly lacking parents. Does it need to matter so much that they "steal" some of your time ? Rather that than do as you now do, and allow them to steal your peace and serenity.
It's not a question of not noticing that they are selfish and inconsiderate, but of choosing what way of responding to that, is most useful for you. YOur fuming for an hour or two, growing ulcers and biting your nails won't transform them into model citizens.
Sounds like you previously chatted to the wrong sort of psychologist, as some indeed are too airy fairy to be useful.
When you mention being so obsessive about your living space, it sounds as though there may be an element of OCD as well, and this can be well helped by CBT, and the CBT therapist could recommend whether medication in addition might be useful
Remember the wise old prayer : "Lord, give me the strength to change what I need to and can change ; the strength to live with what i can't change, and the wisdom to be able to tell the difference"

Reply to cybershrink
Posted by: Purple | 2011/03/04

These things annoy most people, but they aren''t really worth getting your knickers in a know about. Sigh, smile at them and think " arrogant ass"  and move on with your life.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Vaal Donkie | 2011/03/04

Accept the things you can''t change. That is a big part of acquiring wisdom. It used to be exactly like you, but I just decided that if something doesn''t make my life worse in any objective manner, I wouldn''t allow it to upset me. If someone pushes a trolley into the express checking lane, will that really do anything worse than waste an extra couple of minutes of your life? I doubt it. THe same goes for rude road-users. Just back off a bit and leave about 4 car lengths in front of you. If someone takes that space, you won''t be in danger and an added bonus is that you will improve the flow of traffic behind you, meaning you did more good than the bad the guy in front of you did.

Reply to Vaal Donkie

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