Life without stress of any kind would be boooooring. In a sense, stress in controlled amounts is what causes each of us as individuals — and thus society as a whole — to progress:
- Athletes wouldn’t get stronger and fitter if they didn’t stress their bodies
- A saxophone player would never improve without some stress to his lips, lungs and ears
- A businessman would be less likely to succeed if he didn’t accept the stress of occasional long hours at work
Where stress goes wrong is when a person’s expectations — whether internal or externally generated — is constantly at the level that rises above that person’s perceived ability to meet them. When this happens, one’s expectations are too high and unrealistic, and constant failure and letdowns result. Anxiety and depression ensue. And when these things happen, compulsive skin and finger picking happens. Thus stress is a routine cause of the picking habit.
Worse yet, stress can even be an side effect of a picking habit. A compulsive picker may engage in some rather desperate measures to avoid being labeled a shameful self-harmer. Again — if a compulsive picker is constantly striving to stop picking but seems unable to do so (impulse control disorder), then they are back in the situation that started them off picking — constant stress of the bad sort.
Things to do if stress causes your picking habit
- Try a behavioral approach to modify the picking behavior or even reverse the habit entirely
- Try a cognitive approach to dealing with the stress factors that precede picking
- Combine behavioral and cognitive approaches with cognitive behavioral therapy
- Try massage therapy or quiet meditation to bring your stress level down to a “healthy” level
- As a final measure, consider antidepressant drugs or natural remedies
Things to do if stress results from your picking habit
- Also try massage, particularly using olive oil for damaged skin and fingernails. This will both calm your nerves and treat the damage caused by picking, which is a common reasons for post-picking stress.
- Do your best to treat the causes of picking — above — and you’ll be well on your to eliminating any resulting stresses
Leave a Comment
You must be logged in to post a comment.
Be sure to visit the Community Forums