By Shaun Flores
OCD and the pain dealt at OCD’s hands, some of us had to do something. Channeling that pain into purposeful action, beyond our own world in order to transform other people's lives. Often I look around and there are so many advocates and activists out there doing incredible work. It is a beautiful sign to see, yet I know one thing, we do not need to be all advocates or activists.
Advocacy/activism has helped me recover, and being of service to others has been monumental for me. It has driven me out of depression and been an exposure for me, therefore, strengthening what I can tolerate for anxiety.
Your existence against OCD is mere resistance and that in itself is a form of advocacy and activism. You are alive in spite of OCD, you are alive and breathing regardless of what OCD says to you. It can feel at times that many people want to be able to tell their story and some others just want to recover from OCD and carry on with life
Advocacy and activism take their toll and it is not made for the faint-hearted, many times it can feel as if you are climbing an impossible hill especially when it comes to OCD. Managing your own mental health whilst also trying to advance a message for the world to hear.
There is an undeniable power and impact that activism and advocacy have, where positive change is created in society. Activism and advocacy do not have to be loud, proud and consistent on social media. It can be volunteering for a charity, taking part in and sharing campaigns and yes if you use social media use it as a tool to spread the message.
Not all advocacy/activism is built the same either. The privilege of resources to be able to engage in advocacy/activism in the very first place. Some of us can't be advocates because it's unpaid, bills have to be paid, and there is a lack of time for opportunities we can not access.
This piece here is not to deter you from advocacy or activism but to make you aware of the realities of what it can look like. Giving you the chance to consider all the possibilities and outcomes. Sometimes we glorify what happens on social media, it comes at a cost and a consequence for us advocates/ activists. We do it for you all!
Your contribution can be sharing the work, liking a post, or sharing an article, it does not have to be huge, it can be small as everything small accumulates to bigger outcomes. Find what aligns with your values, abilities and most importantly your capabilities.
I want you to know you are enough regardless of what you do, do what is best for you and remember your existence is resistance against OCD.