December 24, 2019

In life there are various kinds of risks each of us can take. Some may involve the possibility of danger to our physical self, and others may involve the possibility of equivalent dangers to our emotional self.

Due to a combination of autism, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and perhaps my personality itself I enjoy my comfort zone and fear change. To me, making changes in my life is a huge risk because I feel that it’s much safer to do everything in a way that I’m certain has worked successfully in the past. Whenever I begin to do something differently I have an intense fear that the newer way would fail and end up disastrous.

However there have been moments in my life where making a change was necessary. There have also been times when even I myself have known deep inside that change would be the better and more efficient option. So I made the decision of taking a risk and going forth with that.

In 2015 we had a family holiday which that year was on a cruise to New Zealand. Yet while we were planning the trip we found that the best time was December 8- December 19 which meant that I would be away from home on my birthday. All of my birthdays up to that point had been celebrated at home, and I had a very strong need to keep to that tradition out of fear that I wouldn’t enjoy them as much if I changed the procedure even slightly.

But I made a very strong decision to go ahead with having our family holiday at that time, as I had a feeling (very) deep within me that making this change to my birthday tradition would enable me to enjoy it even more. However I must say that throughout the year I felt very doubtful and worried about this. There were even various meltdowns I had during the months leading up to the holiday as a result of the anxiety I experienced from that fear.

Yet once the holiday came along and I spent my first day on the cruise ship I felt that I was set to have a fabulous birthday, and when we reached the actual day I had the best birthday I had ever experienced.

That was just one example of a moment in my life when I had be tough on myself and accept a change of routine when it was necessary for my overall wellbeing. Making the decision is always tough for me, and carrying through on that decision is at first extremely difficult when I have to actually apply myself to it.

Though my feelings a little later are always quite different. After committing myself to a change and feeling initial discomfort, I then begin to notice that change is actually more fun than clinging on to routine. Doing everything in a way that I’ve accustomed myself to feels more secure. But when I make a difference from time to time I’m enabled to see other sides to an experience, and for what it’s worth it could be even more exciting than that of which I was scared to let go of.

New experiences also create new routines for the future; until the fun of something new wears off a little and then it’s necessary to change the procedure slightly again. It’s very much like keeping the same house but rearranging the furniture every now and again. Metaphorically I’ll also be sweeping off unneeded dust and cobwebs gathered over time.

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