OCD vs. Perfectionism Part 1

According to Psychology Today, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder in which people have unwanted and repeated thoughts, feelings, ideas, sensations (obsessions), or behaviors that make them feel driven to do something (compulsions).

I work with someone who claims to be OCD about needing to have everything put away.  Most of the time he has nothing on his desk besides the telephone, keyboard and computer monitor.  Once in a while there are neat stacks of papers or files that need more than one days attention.

He hates clutter.

He probably cringes when he walks into my office as I have stuff on my desk.  Box of tissues.  A printer.  Rolodex.  Telephone.  Pencil cup.  Desk calculator.  A stack of paper towels and napkins.  Photos.  Candy dish.  A lamp.  A plant.  Some office supply catalogs.  A stack of note paper.  Two piles of miscellaneous stuff.


I’ve never been to his house but he says he is constantly cleaning up after his wife and three kids.

If you want something neat, he will gladly neaten it.  Unfortunately it doesn’t matter if it’s organized or put away properly.  He wants it done and gets it done.  Fini.  Out of sight.

I, however, am not ODC when it comes to being neat.  Just ask Mr. Aitch.  No, don’t.  I consider myself to be creative and creative people have other issues.  When I create, I want it to be perfect.  I will redo somethingas many times as it takes to get it as perfect as I can.

My grandmother used to say “If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right.” “Right” to others might mean to the best of ones ability.  “Right” to me means perfect.

I view myself as a perfectionist.  It truly is a challenge to try to rid myself of this malady.

Mr. OCD and I work together a lot so I’m used to his work habits.  Occasionally I ask him to help me do some physical project for the office.  Like move something that’s too heavy for me.  Four hands are better than two and strength is better than none.

I recently recovered a desk chair for the office and I needed Mr. OCDs strength.  And my malady.  Because it has to be right, not just done.

5 thoughts on “OCD vs. Perfectionism Part 1

  1. I love your office. Mr. OCD would have had an attack if he had seen my school desk. I agree with Grandmother about doing a job right, even tho I do tend to “fly by the seat of my pants” on stuff!😗


  2. Pingback: OCD vs. Perfectionism Part 2 | Knitting In Flashes

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