How to Overcome Your #1 Challenge

It can be very overwhelming to confront your fears and defy OCD. This feeling of being overwhelmed is likely to lead to an “I can’t do it” mentality. Your #1 challenge is to overcome this belief.

I was so happy this morning to take a long walk and find a beach before the start of the OCD conference.  I think I’d walk on fire to get to a body of water.

Breathing in dirt and whatever else
Breathing in dirt and whatever else

That’s sort of what I had to do this morning to get to the beach. I walked by a lot of noisy dirty construction sites and very smelly dumpsters. It was a very unpleasant toxic walk.

I held my breath and walked fast. It was disgustingly unpleasant. What have I gotten myself into?

Finally I found the beach! There were dogs frolicking in the water. Everyone had a smile.


It was a little piece of heaven.

And then the wasps came. I’m terrified of insects, especially ones with stingers. I sound like I’m singing opera whenever a bee comes near me. When the wasp landed on my backpack, I started singing. The couple next to me laughed. I thought, “I gotta get outta here!”

I asked myself, “Tammy, you worked so hard to get here. Are you going to focus on what’s unpleasant (what feels even dangerous) or soak in the sun and gaze lovingly at these happy dogs smiling ear-to-ear?”

I thought about returning to the hotel just to feel safer (just a little safer since I have a bed bug phobia) or did I want to sit in the sand and breathe in all that is warm and good?

I focused on the moment. Right here, right now I’m pretty okay. I breathed deep and smiled at the scraggiest wet dog I’ve ever seen. 

So smelly
So smelly


Then it occurred to me what I was going to have to do to get back to the hotel. OMG. Could I do it? Could I walk through Toxic Lane again?

Suddenly I was bathed in kisses by a very wet white poodle. He slathered my face in sloppy kisses. In this moment, right here, right now, I’m pretty okay.

There’s a Bible verse, Matthew 7:7, “Seek and ye shall find.” What you look for you’ll find. So I focused my energy on what I want and why I want it. I didn’t focus on what I had to do to get it.

I want to enjoy this moment. I need this for my soul. If I focus on what I have to do to get it, I’m  bound to say, “I can’t do it.” I can’t stay at a hotel where there might be bed bugs. I can’t walk on a smelly gross toxic street. I can’t be on a beach where there are wasps.

“I can’t do it” isn’t true. It’s nothing more than a limiting belief. Can I say with 100% certainty that I can’t do it? If not, what then is possible?

As I sat on the beach a woman and her son spoke to me. She said, “This is so beautiful.” She told me she had MS (Multiple Sclerosis) and had just walked all the way from a far and

Son helping Mom
Son helping Mom

distant street. Her gait was significantly impaired. She leaned on her son as he led her to the shore.  Now that’s a woman without a limiting belief.

The belief you subscribe to is the life you live.

Focus your energy on what you want, and why you want it. Don’t focus on the path you’re going to have to take to get it. Put one foot in front of the other and get what you want.

Believe you can and this is the life you will live. If you say, “This is hard. Unpleasant. But I can do it. I know what I want. I know why I want it. I’m doing it.” This is the life you’ll live.

Your #1 challenge isn’t OCD. It’s thinking “I can’t” when feeling overwhelmed. That’s the challenge. Pushing through that limiting belief, feeling the fear and doing it anyway.

“I can. It’s hard. But, here I go.”

2 thoughts on “How to Overcome Your #1 Challenge”

  1. “I can’t do it” isn’t true. It’s nothing more than a limiting belief. Can I say with 100% certainty that I can’t do it? If not, what then is possible?

    Great post Tammy! I love the statement above in particular. I don’t believe I can do this is NOT necessarily the same as I can’t do this, although I (and I’m confident many others) treat them the same way. It is an important distinction, though, and a good test if something is reasonable. “I can’t touch that floor, it’s got germs on it.” This statement is unreasonable because it could be “I don’t believe I can touch the floor because of the germs.” Sometimes saying I don’t believe I can do this and I can’t do this are the same, but it’s very rare. For example, if I say “If I flap my arms outside on my lawn, I can’t fly.” To be fair, though, I’ve never tried this so I don’t KNOW for certain. I’ll be right back…

    1. There’s a stand up comedian job that’s calling you name. Hope you discovered your wings! You’ve got them!!!

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