The Obsessive Compulsive Discipline Approach

Great workers often have a different kind of OCD. They have obsessive compulsive discipline rather than disorder. They feel compelled to follow this approach and aim to do superb work.  

Different workers are obsessed by different things. They may feel compelled to write, paint, help people, solve certain problems or do other things. They then follow their chosen activity in a disciplined way.

Different people follow this approach in different areas. They may be artists, educators, medics, sports coaches, engineers, people workers and those in other fields. One person described this in the following way.

“Looking back, I do not know if I chose my obsession or if my obsession chose me. But it doesn’t really matter.

“Every morning I get up feeling compelled to do what I believe in. It is then up to me to channel my creative drive and do work that helps other people.”

Such people sometimes feel like they have been given a gift. Like the person mentioned above, they are not sure if they found their purpose or if their purpose found them. They then follow this purpose in their daily life or work.

Looking back, such people can sometimes see a pattern. They began by exploring interests that gave them positive energy. Then, at a certain point, one of these interests took over. This was sometimes because:

They found the activity to be fascinating;

They followed a certain discipline and experienced a sense of flow;

They did fine work and got a sense of fulfilment.

Such people may find that their chosen activity becomes a positive addiction. Becoming obsessed by the activity, they follow it in a compulsive and disciplined way. Taking this approach can sometimes lead to them experiencing a creative high.

When do you follow elements of this approach? You may do this when encouraging people, playing music, gardening, solving problems, tackling challenges or doing other activities.

Imagine that you want to pursue this activity in the future. How can you follow your obsessive compulsive discipline in your own way? What may be the potential pluses and minuses of taking this approach? How can you build on the pluses and minimise any minuses?

If you wish, try tackling the exercise on this theme. This invites you to complete the following sentences.

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