A life with no compulsions

When I took my new role, there were a lot of challenges; the biggest challenge was to unlearn what I had learned in IBM and learn new stuff in Autodesk. I was compulsively doing things which I had been doing since the last few years. I wasn’t conscious of what I was doing, and my thought process as a result of my previous work culture. Nothing wrong in it, it’s just that new workplace requires you to change and adapt yourself.

The key thing to note is that things were happening compulsively to me. Let’s understand the literal meaning of the word “compulsive“.

Compulsion means an irresistible urge to do certain things, like a compulsive gossip who cannot keep a secret. If you are compulsive, you can’t stop yourself from doing something, like compulsive counting of the sidewalk blocks on your way to school.

I was curious to understand more about compulsions and figured out following  types of compulsions: 

  • Shopping
  • Hoarding
  • Eating
  • Gambling
  • Checking counting washing repeating
  • Talking
  • Daydreaming 
  • Sex and many others

What do these compulsions do? 

Simply put – these compulsions disconnect us from what we do, how we perceive things and make us behave only in a certain way which can be detrimental for us (for others too). Imagine you have a compulsive habit of eating junk food. Will you ever be able to lose weight? You have a compulsion for spending money. Do you think you will ever be able to stick to the budget? You have an urge to keep thinking something when you have an important task in hand. Do you think you will ever be able to focus? 

How to fight with this compulsion? 

The most straightforward answer is “Consciousness“. Consciousness is our ability to conduct ourselves the way we want. Our actions are no longer determined by the people, the situations, our likes, our dislikes, our preferences. Once we are conscious, suddenly we get empowered and conduct ourself in a way that works for us, not against us. So if you want to lose weight, we know we have a strong urge to eat which we shouldn’t eat. We know we are giving up to our compulsive behaviour. However, if we are conscious, we will not give away our power to chose what will work for us rather than what will work against us. 

Compulsiveness truly is darkness – you cannot fight with it. The only way to get rid of darkness is to light a bulb, is to become conscious of our compulsions. There is a portion of our energy which gets wasted in succumbing and fighting with compulsions. It takes time, effort and practice to understand our compulsions and conduct ourselves consciously.

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