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Category: Stress (Page 1 of 4)

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Assessments

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Assessments

What is a PIP assessment?

Under normal circumstances a  PIP assessment is an opportunity for you to talk about how your condition affects you – it’s not a diagnosis of your condition or a medical examination.

The DWP will use evidence from the assessment to help them decide if they need PIP.

Therefore it is best to make your own report and detail everything about your illness and how you manage your daily activities.

An in-depth report is evidence that can be used against the DWP if your claim is denied. Having a phone call you cannot record the conversation.

Concluding the call you should ask for a copy of the recording which you are entitled to have by law.

People have the right to request copies of the data that is held by an organization, the ability to search and copy recorded calls will be necessary. Requests of this type must be responded to within one month. GDPR and Legitimate Interest. https://www.compliancejunction.com/gdpr-rules-recording-calls/

A health professional will carry out your assessment, write a report and send it to the DWP.

Talking about how your condition affects you

A helpful guide on the Citizens Advice website says that you should be prepared to talk about how your condition affects you even if you have already detailed it on your PIP claim form.

This can be hard to do, but it will really help if you can talk about:

  • the kind of things you have difficulty with, or can’t do at all – for example, walking up steps without help or remembering to go to appointments
  • how your condition affects you from day to day
  • what a bad day is like for you – for example, ‘On a bad day, I can’t walk at all because my injured leg hurts so much’ or ‘On a bad day, I’m so depressed I can’t concentrate on anything

It is a good idea to have your own copy of your PIP claim form with you for telephone assessment, that way you can refer back to it.

I strongly suggest on headed paper write a concise report detailing your illness without leaving out a single thing.

Discrimination

A disabled lawyer launched a ground-breaking legal case against the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) over his claim that it deliberately discriminated against him in rejecting his claim for disability benefits. Daniel Donaldson founder of the Scottish social enterprise law firm Legal Spark, believed DWP chose to discriminate against him and other people with mental health conditions in the way it has dealt with their personal independence payment (PIP) claims.

This is very worrying if the DWP has discriminated against a lawyer. Although the article about Donal Donaldson was published in 2018 it is very worrying how the government is playing God with people’s lives who genuinely need help.

Daniel ended up taking the DWP to Glasgow Sheriff Court and was seeking nearly £5,000 in damages, to cover bank charges, the removal of his bus pass, and £4,000 in compensation for the discrimination.

Donaldson sued the DWP Equality Act against the Scottish government because it failed to take on responsibility for PIP from DWP when it had the powers to do so in 2016.

A Scottish government spokesman said:

“We have repeatedly called on the UK government to halt the roll-out of PIP in Scotland, most recently following the report of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities which called for a review of PIP due to the damage it is causing people”.

Donaldson said the “UK government had created “a hostile and degrading environment for disabled people” by “using public policy to strip people of their statutory entitlement to benefits”, including PIP and employment and support allowance (ESA)”.

You can read the full story here: Disabled solicitor launches ground-breaking legal case over PIP discrimination – Disability News Service

Useful Links

Discrimination: your rights: What you can do – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Equality Advisory Support Service (EASS) – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

My Concerns about the up-and-coming assessment for my daughter

Circus Monkey!

Assistant Editor

My concern is my daughter who has Multiple Sclerosis and is also the assistant editor of ‘Disabled Entrepreneur – Disability UK Journal’, according to the MS Society, the DWP is making it even more difficult to claim. PIP fails | MS Society

It is soul-destroying having to justify you have an illness. People should not have to be made to perform like circus monkeys to prove they are ill. The assessment is on the 5th of January 2023. I will be listening to the call.

My daughter has already expressed anxiety and stress and is worried about taking the call.

PIP Email Address

I have advised my daughter to write a letter and attach it to an email prior to the assessment call, this adds extra weight to your claim and creates a carbon footprint of evidence.

PIP say they do not have an email address even though they do😂 : contactus@capita-pip.co.uk

Medical evidence should suffice. A primary neurologist consultant is far more qualified than any PIP assessor”.

An Assessors Qualifications

According to Capita’s, website to be an assessor you may be a nurse, occupational therapist, paramedic, physiotherapist, pharmacist, speech and language therapist, or clinical psychologist who is looking for a change, for new opportunities.

As a Disability Assessor, you’ll:

  • be a fully qualified healthcare professional 
  • have a minimum of one year’s post-full registration experience
  • be fully registered with a relevant UK regulatory body (NMC/HCPC/GPhC or other), without restriction or conditions and with a valid PIN
  • live and be based in the UK 
  • have sound written communication skills
  • be able to manage conversations and ask questions effectively
  • be confident with computers 

Who we’re looking for | Capita PIP Careers (capitapipjobs.co.uk)

This proves that they do not have to have to be specialists in any disorder. A nurse has general knowledge of how the body works but is not specialized in any field other than nursing.

According to the Royal College of Nursing:

All registered nurses must choose from one of four specialisms as part of their nursing degree – adult nursing, children’s nursing, mental health nursing, or learning disability nursing. It’s possible to change after graduating, but this doesn’t mean your career is decided. 

Adult nursing

Adult nurses work with patients over 18. They can work in hospitals or in community settings such as people’s homes, health centers or nursing homes.  Once qualified, they can take extra courses to specialize in areas such as cancer care, women’s health, accident and emergency, critical care, practice nursing, health visiting or school nursing.

Children’s nursing

Children’s nurses work with children and young people up to 19 years old and can work in a variety of settings, from specialist baby care units to adolescent units. Children react to illness in a very different way from adults, and children’s nurses are specially trained to understand their needs. Children’s nurses also support, advise and educate parents and carers. Once qualified, they can specialize in areas such as health visiting, school nursing, intensive care, child safeguarding, and cancer care.

You cannot confuse a nurse with a doctor or specialist. A nurse will not have the same qualifications as a doctor, neurologist, consultant, or psychiatrist.

What is Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, neurodegenerative condition for which there is currently no cure.

In MS, the body’s immune system attacks myelin, the protective cover around nerve fibers. Damage, which can occur anywhere in the central nervous system, interferes with messages traveling from the brain and spinal cord to other parts of the body. Symptoms are many and varied but unique to each person. They can include problems with balance, vision, the bladder, bowel, speech, memory, fatigue, and painful muscle spasms, among many other things. MS affects over 100,000 people in the UK, many of whom experience their first symptoms during the peak of their working lives, in their 20s and 30s. MS is both a fluctuating and progressive condition. While the progression and symptoms of MS vary from individual to individual, primary progressive MS affects around 10 to 15% of people with MS. This is progressive from the very first symptoms. The remaining 85% of people with MS are initially diagnosed with relapsing forms of MS, where people have distinct attacks of symptoms with the underlying damage building up over time.

Many people with MS will go on to develop secondary progressive MS within 15 years of being diagnosed.

“Having MS is debilitating – it shouldn’t be made harder by a welfare system that is humiliating, degrading, and adds more stress which can lead to relapses. Stressing an individual out to the point that they relapse could consequently make that person lose their mobility and become bedridden”.

If a person with Multiple Sclerosis relapses because of the stress they endure fighting for something that should help them, then the government should be made accountable.

Relationship between stress and relapse in multiple sclerosis: Part I. Important features – PubMed (nih.gov)

From a personal perspective, my daughter did actually relapse after being frustrated with her laptop not booting up consequently hurling it across the room. So stress is definitely a factor, that should not be ignored.

PIP-2018-2021-update-MS-SOCIETY

#personalindependencepayments #pip #ms #multiplesclerosis #pipassessment #stress #anxiety #dwp #capita #msrelapses

My GP & Neurologist’s Negligence

My GP and Neurologist‘s Negligence

I phoned my GP today after waiting two months for a prescription that my neurologist consultant had prescribed for my unbearable pain which is caused as a result of my multiple sclerosis and yet, to this day I have not had the medication.

When I queried it today, the receptionist I spoke with stated that he was not ‘medically trained’ to read the letter sent from the neurologist at the hospital and that I would have to wait for the doctor to read it and approve. This goes to show the mentality of the receptionists at my GP as mentioned previously, he stated he couldn’t read my letter as he was not ‘medically trained’, when in reality, he shouldn’t be reading my letter at all as that would breach Data Protection Act 2015. None the less, I gave the GP the benefit of the doubt and continued to wait for my medication.

A few weeks go by and I get a call from the GP, although to my surprise it is not the doctor but a different receptionist. The woman I spoke with informed me that she was passing on a message from the doctor stating I had to have a consultation to discuss the medication at hand. When I questioned why I would need to discuss the medication when I had already done so with my consultant, she could not reply. As a result of this, it meant that I would have to ring up the GP at 8am the following day to fight for an appointment to then have to wait all day for a doctor to give me a call back.

Why do I need a consultation with the GP when my consultant who is a qualified neurologist has prescribed them?

I believe this is to test people and for them to beg to get medication. So am I to believe my general practitioner doctor is more qualified than the neurologist? This is now causing me anxiety and stress. Stress can lead to MS relapse.

So they cannot book an appointment at the time of the phone call, you have to be a good soldier and do as they ask.

When I told my mother who is also my carer, she said she would intervene and write a letter (which never gets answered, may I add) demanding that I have the medication otherwise my mother would take it up with the ombudsman.

I am worried I will get kicked out of the surgery as I am dependent on my drugs for the excruciating pain I endure, so told her not to pursue it. I have been threatened by this surgery before regarding not agreeing with some of the things they say. Both my mother and I have agreed that I contact my primary neurologist and explain not only have I fallen through the gaps regarding getting my monthly blood as stipulated on the Lemtrada website but my GP is refusing to give me the medication that the consultant requested.

This is Medical Negligence!

I am documenting this as evidence that my quality of life is being compromised because of my GP not giving me my medication and my concerns that my blood is not being tested to monitor any changes to catch them early.

This will be forwarded to PIP (Personal Independence Payments).

I will update again once I get further information.

My GP Google Reviews

Update 15/12/22

I phoned my GP to book a consultation under duress otherwise I would have had hope in hell to get my medication, even though it was prescribed by a neurologist.

The doctor did phone me back only to ask me what I needed to talk about…OMG.

When I said about my medication she continued to ask which medication I was referring to, even though supposedly there was a message on my notes. She then asked if I am capable to take them…..what the hell?

What a waste of time and resources.

The doctor did not even know why she was ringing me other than me requesting a callback which I was put on the spot to do, otherwise, I would not have had my meds.

And people wonder why they struggle to get a GP appointment, this is a perfect example as to how the GP waste resources, time and effort. This appointment could have been utilised for someone who actually needed it, not for a chit chat.

Further Reading:

https://cavuhb.nhs.wales/

Prescribing in general practice (bma.org.uk)

Public Services Ombudsman for Wales

https://www.jcpsolicitors.co.uk

https://www.thorntons-law.co.uk/knowledge/to-sue-or-not-after-medical-negligence

Update 20/12/22 – Non-existent blood tests!

My non-existent blood tests (required by law).

After losing my patience waiting for my non-existence letter to arrive to notify me to have my blood test done, I decided to contact my primary neurologist by email. Baring in mind I am supposed to have a blood test done every month to prevent/pick up early, transfusion related conditions such as Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), kidney problems/anti-GBM disease and problems of the thyroid gland (hypo/hyperthyroidism). As I am writing this, it has been 7 weeks since my last blood test and yet my primary consultant could not care less, he is obviously happy I have lined his pockets ready for Christmas.

Granted he was quick to respond.

The unfortunate thing is, had I of not emailed him, he would have been none the wiser that I had not had any blood work done. Surely, as my primary consultant, it is his responsibility to ensure that as his patient, I am having the necessary tests to ensure I am ok.

Not only that, he confirmed my blood test on the 2nd November was okay, would he have not noticed that I was not scheduled for a repeat test for the following month? Would he have not spoken with the other neurologist that I saw last? Do people within the hospital even communicate with one another, or is that my responsibility too?

I did mention that I understood Royal Mail was on strike and the nurses and emergency service are following suit. I was concerned that I have not had any blood tests done and my neurologist replied to sort it out myself and phone his secretary.

Why should I go out of my way to chase blood tests?

I have always had my blood taken at the hospital so why suggest I have them done at my GP who is also as useful as a chocolate fireguard?

Why move the goalposts? Why try to fix something that is not broken, meaning continue to have my blood taken at the hospital?

It is the responsibility of the consultant to make sure I have a blood test done and not down to me to do their job for them.

I can see pound signs of their lack of empathy and aftercare for their patient.

If something is found that could have been prevented all hell will break loose, mark my words.

What the Government Has to Say:

Lemtrada▼ (alemtuzumab): updated restrictions and strengthened monitoring requirements following a review of serious cardiovascular and immune-mediated reactions

A review of the benefits and risks of alemtuzumab (including fatal reactions) in the treatment of multiple sclerosis has now concluded and recommended a revised indication, additional contraindications, and strengthened monitoring requirements before, during, and after treatment. Patients offered alemtuzumab should be alerted to the early risks of cardiovascular events and thrombocytopenia around the time of infusion and to the delayed risk of immune-mediated reactions. Healthcare professionals should inform patients what to do if they develop any symptoms of these disorders.

https://www.gov.uk/drug-safety-update/lemtrada-alemtuzumab

https://www.ema.europa.eu/en/medicines/human/referrals/lemtrada

Meeting highlights from the Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) 28-31 October 2019 | European Medicines Agency (europa.eu)

He has had his commission so I am not a priority even though under the Alemtuzumab Guidelines I have to have my blood checked every month.

lemtrada-article-20-procedure-lemtrada-multiple-sclerosis-measures-minimise-risk-serious-side_en

My primary consultant came up with all these fancy words as if I am supposed to understand even though I am not medically trained.

And we wonder why the NHS is in the state it is in because no one seems to be doing their jobs properly, yet everyone is complaining they are overworked and underpaid.

Be lucky you have a job is all I can say”.

Lucky Black Cat
My MS Therapy Cat (Tibbles).

#gpnegiligence #prescribedmedication #neurology #neurologist #neurologistconsultant #consultant #specialist #ms #multiplesclerosis #MeddygfaAlbanySurgery

Anxiety and Panic Attack, Personal Perspective

Anxiety and Panic Attack, Personal Perspective

Article Written and Published 9th December 2022 19.45 pm

This is a health update on how I am feeling today. It started off with Evri supposedly delivering two expensive parcels to my property with a photo of what looked like the side of a package and the pavement.

When I received the email I immediately went downstairs because I live in a First Floor Flat only to find nothing in the communal area, so my initial thought was to buzz my neighbor to see if they heard the buzzer go (seeing as I am partially deaf) and the woman said she did not hear anything. I then went outside and could not see anything.

So now I am starting to panic, I could feel my heart pumping faster and I started to shake.

Although this post is not entirely a medical guide I will still include a few links should you need to research further.

The symptoms I had were:

  • Shortness of breath or hyperventilating
  • Fastened heartbeat
  • Feeling ill and lightheaded
  • Feeling out of control or like you’re about to die (a distinctive sign of a panic attack!)
  • Tingling sensation in your fingers or lips
  • Shaking and sweating 
  • Chest pain 
  • Tearful
  • Anxious
  • Feeling out of control

Fear, Anxiety & Panic Attacks

My Anxiety

I continued the small talk and asked if they had sorted the problem with British Gas chasing them for £2K even though they have only lived in the property for two months if that. Now, this is the bit that started alarm bells ringing because I am in communication with British Gas who have said my address has been reverted back to Ground Floor on the 8th of November 2022 where the debt is (which has nothing to do with me). I was even told by British Gas that my meter was associated with the building rather than the flat according to the national database. I have not had any problems for 23 years and all of a sudden I am.

  • I am feeling very anxious over a lot of things right now. My brother and his wife and son are coming to the UK for Christmas and although it would be nice to see them, I am anxious because I do not know how well I can cope with my OCD. Furthermore, they expect me to travel which is a journey of 3 hours and I need to go to the loo every hour. Public toilets are out of the question. I can cope with my disability at home but doing what I do is humiliating and embarrassing when it’s done in front of other people that do not understand.
  • I feel anxious just in case they make a diversion and want to come to my home, I have anxiety issues when workmen and contractors come in let alone anyone else. If I had more money I would make the place look more liveable but as it stands it’s I place I work and lay my head to sleep.
  • Although I have agreed to meet with my brother, he does not realize the ordeal I have to go through to get from A to B, It is stressing me because he is not taking my disability seriously. I am already leaving my comfort zone and am testing my OCD thresh-hold. My daughter said if I do this now I won’t have to go through this again for a while. So fingers crossed on how well I cope with my disorder.

So going back to my missing parcels they were wedged between the pavement and the bin where anyone passing by could have swiped. Nice one Evri part of the Hermes group shower of company.

I feel very on edge and feel very tearful. My tolerance levels are nil. I have no patience and am very irritable. Put it this way I found one last valium that I saved in case of emergencies which was prescribed donkey years ago. I still feel my heart racing and the valium pill did jack sh#t 💩 to calm me down.

A few hours have now passed since the fiasco with the courier this afternoon and writing how I feel down has actually helped to a certain extent.

It’s easy to say don’t worry, or things will be ok, but unless you are walking in my shoes it’s hypocritical for someone to judge.

“I will continue carrying on, one step at a time, until one day the universe manifests my desires”.

I believe one day I will have everything I dreamed of. I believe nothing stays in the same place forever. I continue to keep myself busy, to stop myself from thinking about my past. I have set myself goals that I will strive to achieve and from this, I will be able to eradicate my memories. I will be able to help others to also put their past behind them and learn to overcome their fears. Everyone has down days even the richest people on the planet and everyone has a story to tell. The trick is learning to love, respect yourself and learn to forgive. My therapy is called “writing”, this can be a letter, a diary, a blog, or a book.

Writing releases the tension and puts it out to the universe, it is up to God to punish the perpetrators that have hurt you, whilst allowing you to rebuild your life.

“I carry a battlefield of wounds and from my own personal experiences will tell my story”.

My Book Is Coming Out In 2023

“Like a Pheonix, From the ashes, I will rise and God help anyone that stands in my way. I am a survivor warrior and am iRenata”.

#anxiety #panicattacks #depression #uncertanty #insecurity #lowselfesteem

My OCD, My Story!

My OCD the Story of Renata Entrepreneur

My OCD is germ contamination that started 38 years ago but was diagnosed in1992.

This surgery has moved and DR Dolben has retired. My medical records including this letter would be on the system. My medical records are now held at Meddygfa Albany Surgery 219-221 City Road Roath Cardiff CF24 3JD and the head Doctor is Dr. Capatana.

Symptoms

In the beginning, I started to adopt unusual habits I did not understand what it was or why I was doing it other than I had to release the impulsive urge otherwise it would torment me. There was no internet back then so could not google it.

Looking back now my mother had similar traits but not as bad as me and some were a little different.

When I tried telling my mother in her later years she was in complete denial. My father was not happy because he did not know what OCD was and did not like me whipping out Dettol Surface Spray every five minutes and simply thought I had a screw loose.

What is OCD

OCD is a common debilitating condition affecting individuals from childhood through adult life. There is good evidence of genetic contribution to its etiology, but environmental risk factors also are likely to be involved. The condition probably has a complex pattern of inheritance. Molecular studies have identified several potentially relevant genes, but much additional research is needed to establish definitive causes of the condition. Genetics of OCD – PMC (nih.gov)

Hereditary OCD.

My mother had OCD, for example, when we came home from school my mother would make us stand in a small area in the kitchen to take our shoes off, we would then have to go upstairs immediately and stand on a newspaper to take our uniform off and get changed.

My mother had a habit of checking the soles of our shoes or even guest shoes as no one could come into the house without taking them off in the corridor. I reckon if anyone caught her doing what she did they would be mortified.

All grocery shopping would have to be washed with detergent before it could go in the cupboards. Obviously, some foods such as bakeries would have the outer packaging wiped with a dishcloth.

My mother had problems with newspapers and mail (just like me), she was careful how she opened them, everything had to be in a certain place and could not be touched unless it was in a certain area of the house and we would have to discard the outer envelopes and wash our hands.

My father’s jacket would always be inspected for dirt, especially on the hem and sleeves after he hung it up. I think her OCD put a strain on their marriage, although I think they had problems way before she developed the disorder which I believe was a direct consequence of how my father treated her.

Ongoing studies point to a genetic defect in the way the front area of the brain communicates with deeper areas. These deeper structures use serotonin, a chemical messenger. Images of the brain in some people with OCD show that these defective communication circuits work more normally with serotonin-based medications or cognitive behavior therapy. OCD Causes: Is OCD Genetic, Hereditary? | HealthyPlace

The start of my OCD symptoms.

I was 21 when I started to develop OCD traits, it was whilst I was in a relationship with someone who took advantage of his position in a Bank he worked in, and any attractive-looking female customers he would look for their names, addresses, and phone numbers up and phone them to ask them out for dates (obviously this would never be allowed to happen now because of GDPR but as I got more suspicious that he was playing away I phoned the numbers that he would leave lying around and the women would confirm that they went out with him. It is amazing no one reported him because he is now a regional bank manager thanks to me finding the job in a job center and applying on his behalf somewhat 38 years ago.

The straw that broke the camel’s back.

I think the straw that broke the camel’s back was when out of the blue with no notice at all he said it was over between us. To be honest I was madly in love with him (he looked like a young version of Tom Cruise a spitting image of Top Gun Movie 1 and now looks more like David Cameron MP (Yes I have looked him up and blocked him). I would have taken a bullet for him (my ex not the MP), regardless of what he did.

In my heart, I forgave him as long as we would stay together, but pressure from his parents especially his mother did not approve of me as the daughter of a working-class immigrant who wanted her precious son to have a more upper-class suitor. His sister was also never a fan because it was her boyfriend that arranged a blind date that got us together and at the last minute bailed only to ask her brother to take his place. I was not aware of how much grief this would cause, and I would have been pissed if the roles were reversed and it happened to me, so did not blame her for being angry. She ended up breaking up with her boyfriend after that.

I knew at heart of hearts there was something very seriously wrong in our relationship (with my ex) and that he was a player. I started to wash my hands and body in ‘Dettol Antiseptic Disinfectant’ liquid, which either would be undiluted on my hands or mixed in my shower gels and shampoos because I believed I wanted to wash the other women’s scent off me when he was intimate with me.

To this day I will only use Dettol Brand, I use it when I bathe and also when I wash my clothes. It cannot be any other brand other than Dettol.

I think what escalated my OCD was when I found out he was visiting brothels and he caught an STD, by that time we were not having sex but the thought of him having crabs grossed me out. It’s a long story about how I found out and it will be in my autobiography when I publish it.

I then started to be very vigilant about my surroundings, I started to have the shower curtain outside the bath, which would cause the floor to get wet and also get him angry, which in turn caused arguments. I could not stand the shower curtain clinging to me as I was showering and to this day I have not changed this habit. I now have a glass folding door fitted in my own bathroom.

After we broke up I think I must have had a nervous breakdown. I thought my life was over and I so desperately wanted him back, I realized why he no longer wanted to be with me because he met someone that worked at the bank (I believe everything happens for a reason, had I not found him that job, things would have maybe turned out differently) but looking at it now he did me a favor. I then decided to move away so that I would never bump into him again. I have since blocked him on all social media so if he was ever to look me up he would never have a hope in hell of ever speaking to me.

Coping with OCD over the years.

Over the years and depending on what was going on in my life I have good days and bad days but I learned to cope and adapt.

I did keep my OCD hidden for many years as I was very embarrassed to admit there was something wrong with me.

It was when people in public places bumped into me (busy towns) I started to have an issue with social connection. When using public transport I hated people sitting next to me. It got to the stage I would avoid buses altogether and it really rattled me when someone would push past me or if they bumped into me (say sorry) my argument would be if I was a car and there was a collision they would be doing more than apologizing.

I would find it hard to go to restaurants and cafes and have my own set of cutlery. I became vigilant about how the server served the drinks and how close to the rim of the glass their fingers would be. I ended up drinking from straws. I have been known to clean the seat before sitting down, this would get people to give me funny looks. Imagine sitting on a seat where the previous person has sat who may have tram lines in his or her undergarments.

My OCD is germ contamination. My impulse is not to touch unsanitized objects and my compulsion is to clean and disinfect whatever I am in contact with.

I have now opted out of socializing, it’s embarrassing to wear latex gloves in public. There is a stigma attached to people that behave differently from the rest of the batteries in the matrix. The chances of being judged or ridiculed are too much for me to bear.

I prefer to live behind a computer screen than interact with the outside world.

Don’t get me wrong I would venture out if I had to, but try to avoid it as much as possible. I would take extra precautionary measures and try to overcome my anxiety.

I have all my groceries, prescriptions and shopping delivered. There is nothing I cannot do but it all has to be done online. All statements and invoices are online.

I also have a problem with flies (fruit flies in particular) but flies in general that sits on dog poo and then sit on your surfaces really turn my stomach. In the summer months, I am armed with fly spray by the dozen.

My Compulsions

My compulsions, I do try and fight as much as I can, say, for instance, if I have touched something by accident, I will go and change my clothes. However, there have been instances where I have not been able to sanitize expensive things and have had to through them away. I remember when my daughter was little and she stepped in dog poo, I ended up throwing out her shoes.

I cannot share my bath with anyone else other than my daughter. I cannot let anyone touch anything that belongs to me such as a laptop, books, or that kind of thing.

I cannot have someone sit next to me or touch me. Even my daughter’s cat knows not to jump on my seating area, although if he has brushed himself by accident against me I immediately have to take my leggings off to be washed.

I go through about 1000 pairs of gloves per month and use two bottles of 750 ml antiseptic disinfectant a week. I spent about £800 on this alone last year (I know this from doing my tax return).

The more stressed I am the worse my OCD gets. If people put pressure on me and cause me stress and anxiety the more it flares up.

My Triggers

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Reminders of the trauma and grief I endured
  • Intrusive Thoughts
  • My Personal Belonging Being Touched
  • Germ Contamination
  • Being Touched (Hugs)
  • Flies (Insects)
  • Dog Poo (cat poo or bird poo is not so bad, it is dog poo that is a trigger for me)
  • Animal Hair (especially dog hair)
  • Shaking Hands (how many people actually wash their hands when they go to the toilet)
  • Kissing
  • Sharing Plates of Food
  • Public Places that are not sanitized
  • Half-finished projects or errors that need correcting (I cannot leave an error for another day I have to correct it there and then)

Different Kinds Of OCD

As the internet evolved I started learning more and more about the different kinds of OCD. https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/different-types-of-ocd/

I was also surprised by how many famous people have OCD (alive and dead)

https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/category/famous-people-with-ocd/

MPs Charles Walker and Kevan Jones tell of mental health issues – BBC News

Social Disconnection

It is not that unusual for entrepreneurs to socially disconnect: https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/social-disconnection-entrepreneurs/

Keeping grief hidden can be a survival strategy after suffering a bereavement. New research shows that the social disconnection caused by concealing feelings of loss can increase psychological distress.

Social Disconnection is not always about OCD it could relate to other psychological distress disorders.

Every person on this planet will endure grief at some point in their lives. It will depend on how they cope which will determine the final outcome.

My Therapy.

I find that scripting in a journal helps (I do it online but you can do it in a book, it’s down to personal preference at the end of the day) to get whatever off my chest. I have also tried meditation and hypnosis and you need to stick to it and do it religiously for it to work.

I have tried psychotherapy and CBT therapy and it only works in the short term. Speaking to shrink every week having to talk about the things you would rather forget is counterproductive. As for CBT, it is a therapy to change your thought process and resist the urge of the compulsion, the only way this kind of therapy works is under hypnosis which the NHS does not provide, and if you try and do it yourself you have to religiously work at it (miracles do not happen overnight).

I have self-hypnotized myself successfully although it is short-lived because I have to do it every day or a few times a week, in which I do not have the time for, considering I am working all day I am too tired and just want to go to sleep.

I also take prescribed medication, not that it helps my OCD in fact all it does is help me fall asleep. I would not mind doing clinical trials of magic mushrooms (Psilocybin) which I have heard can help sufferers with OCD. It is illegal to harvest or use them, without medical supervision. They are considered Class A drugs.

Magic-mushroom drug can treat severe depression, trial suggests – BBC News

How Magic Mushrooms Can Resolve OCD – Happy Herb Company

The campaign to use magic mushrooms in OCD treatment | Psychonaut Care

How Psilocybin Mushrooms Can Treat Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) (sagebrains.com)

Magic mushroom compound performs as well as antidepressant in small study | Imperial News | Imperial College London

I keep myself busy and I am constantly learning about my disease so that I can not only help myself but help others like me.

I try to resist my urges as much as I can.

Germ Contamination

I am very vigilant about germ awareness and cross-contamination.

Motivating & Empowering & Advocate of OCD

I am an advocate for people with OCD. This is one of the reasons why I built this site to help people not only with mental but physical disabilities.

My daughter has Multiple Sclerosis and there are certain things she finds difficult to do so I arrange her appointments and respond to her every whim at least five hours a day. I am her personal assistant and care for her needs. I support her not only as her mother but also as her carer. Just because I have OCD does not stop me from doing things inside my home, with PPE. I can help her with getting in and out of the bath, just like any nurse wearing PPE clothing, such as disposable gloves and disposable hygiene coats. I can also cook and clean for her and help with anything she needs. Because of her immunosuppression, it is an added bonus that I keep our home sanitized and germ-free.

She is the assistant editor of this site. She suffers from excruciating pain which is one of the symptoms of (MS). and she is on the highest dosage of medication possible to be prescribed on a monthly basis.

In fact, altered functional connectivity between the cerebellum and cerebral networks involved in cognitive-affective processing in patients with OCD provides further evidence for the involvement of the cerebellum in the pathophysiology of OCD & MS and is consistent with impairment in executive control and emotion.

Stress & Cognitive Function. | DISABLED ENTREPRENEUR – DISABILITY UK

My daughter has a problem with symmetry and even numbers.

Just because you have a disability you still can strive to follow your dream even though you may have limitations there is usually a solution to every problem and you can overcome obstacles. There is nothing you cannot do if you put your mind to it.

Final Thoughts

Many neurodevelopmental conditions can often co-exist together, although can be treated in different ways.  

https://www.lanc.org.uk/related-conditions/obsessive-compulsive-disorder/

OCD rears its ugly head when you find it difficult to cope with life, OCD can be the onset of trauma and grief.

Stress, Anxiety, and everyday struggles can cause your OCD to get worse especially when people try to undermine, humiliate, and judge you. Try to not let anything get to you and if you want your own space to write your own personal story, just drop me a line below and I will create a landing page, free of charge. Whatever your disability may be mental or physical you can write to your heart’s content about yourself and your daily struggles. People love reading stories they can relate to.

Since coming out as an OCD sufferer I have been made to feel as if I am bonkers by Personal Independence Payments (PIP). They have made me feel like I have no authority to speak on disabilities even though I am the Editor of this website and have a Diploma in OCD hypnotherapy. I do not practice hypnotherapy and only took the course to help me. As I mentioned previously for hypnotherapy to work it is a process that has to be done religiously on a regular basis. You cannot just hypnotize yourself in one session and expect miracles.

Whilst practicing hypnosis I have got myself into a very relaxed state.

It has helped me to a certain degree to resist my compulsions but has not eradicated my germ contamination obsession problem.

Furthermore, another day comes with more added stress and anxiety and I feel all my hard work has been a waste of time whereby I have just gone back to square one. I really should practice hypnotherapy every day for it to make some difference, yet never seem to find the time. My business comes first, as that is what pays the bills and brings food to the table.

I am not going to let PIP get to me, as a lot of the assessors have fewer qualifications than ‘Greta Thunberg’ who also happens to suffer from OCD. Discussion of Greta Thunberg, OCD, & Polarization | Dave Armstrong (patheos.com)

Renata Hypnotherapy Diploma

Use the contact form below to drop me a line:

#obsessivecompulsivedisorder #ocd #mentalhealth #intrusivethoughts #germawareness #germcontamination #ocdcymru

How To Stop Procrastinating

How to stop Procrastinating

What Is Procrastination?

Procrastination is the act of delaying or putting off tasks until the last minute, or past their deadline. Some researchers define procrastination as a “form of self-regulation failure characterized by the irrational delay of tasks despite potentially negative consequences.” According to Joseph Ferrari, a professor of psychology at DePaul University in Chicago and author of “Still Procrastinating: The No Regret Guide to Getting It Done,” around 20% of U.S. adults are chronic procrastinators.

Procrastination: Why It Happens and How to Overcome It (verywellmind.com)

Normally I am a well-organized individual and keep a business journal of things to do which I tick off once completed. But lately, even the to-do lists just lie there collecting dust.

I would much rather surf the net, watch movies and documentaries, and daydream rather than tackle more important issues. I find I can waste my whole day away simply doing nothing.

I lack motivation and enthusiasm and what once interested me no longer has the same appeal.

I think the only way I can get out of the rut I am in is to set goals because if I carry on like a robot I will not reap my rewards.

I have to stop worrying and think where there is an obstacle there is a solution to each problem and rather than avoid it tackle it head-on, with the attitude whatever will be will be. I am fortunate I can write so if there is a problem I can communicate in writing. My writing skills are my superpower.

If something is too hard to complete in one go, break it down into smaller modules.

As an example, I have a client that wants some articles written, and although I have semi-written them they go over the word count quota in which I am finding it difficult to make it shorter, hence am avoiding this person. I should by rights just say the articles will cost more than what he is prepared to pay or just accept his offer and not do any more work for him.

I am guilty of this, I may do everything than the task at hand. I may spend more time watching Netflix than doing my work. I sometimes lack motivation especially when I have things on my mind which are worrying me. People tend to procrastinate and waste countless hours on trivial pursuits (watching TV, updating their Facebook statuses, shopping online) rather than doing actual work or focusing on more important things.

Regardless if you have deadlines to meet and are putting off finishing a project for work, avoiding homework assignments, or ignoring household chores, procrastination can cause significant repercussions and have a major impact on your job, your grades, and your life.

Sometimes people have mental blocks and sometimes if something is troubling them they may avoid doing what urgently needs to be done.

Rather than run away from the problem tackle it head-on. There is no use trying to sweep it under the carpet because it will always be in the back of your mind.

You need to find the strength to deal with it.

Causes

Never leave things to the last minute, because if you do you will make things worse for yourself, you will make errors because you are hurrying and may not put all your thought into whatever you are trying to achieve. Students especially should give plenty of time to research, study, and understand.

Putting things off to the last minute may not give you ample time to finish the job.

You essentially will get yourself more worked up and stressed whereas if you had done it sooner you would not be in a fluster.

Don’t assume that projects won’t take as long to finish, this can lead to a false sense of security when you believe that you still have plenty of time to complete the tasks.

Staying focused and tackling undesirable jobs can help the job to be done quickly even though you may not always feel motivated. The reality is that if you wait until you’re in the right frame of mind to do certain tasks (especially ones you are not particularly looking forward to), you will probably find that the right time may never come and the task will never be completed.

Academics

A report published in 2007 on a meta-analysis in the Psychological Bulletin found that an outstanding 80% to 95% of college students procrastinated on a regular basis, especially when it came to completing assignments and coursework. According to researchers, there are some major cognitive distortions that lead to academic procrastination.

Students tend to:

  • Be bad at time management and may overestimate or underestimate how much time they have left to perform tasks and
  • Lack motivation
  • Assume that they need to be in the right frame of mind to work

What Is Cognitive Bias?

Depression

Stress and depression can cause procrastination. It is the ability to avoid doing something that may urgently need doing and preoccupying one’s mind with something else that may be trivial. Feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, and a lack of energy can make it difficult to start (and finish) the simplest task. As an example, I have so many projects waiting to be written and I keep putting them off. I find I am a daydreamer and somehow am willing the projects to miraculously get written by themselves. I have decided to get this post published otherwise it would have lingered in my drafts. Depression can also lead to self-doubt. When you can’t figure out how to tackle a project or feel insecure about your abilities, you might find it easier to put it off.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

MY OCD is germ contamination, but I do have traits of perfectionism to make sure my articles are well-written and proofread before publication.

OCD is often linked with maladaptive perfectionism, which causes fears and anxieties about not messing things up or making new mistakes. It can also lead to doubts about whether you are doing something properly and worrying about what others may think of you or their expectations of you.

I am usually very organized and decisive although it is said that people with OCD also often have a propensity toward indecision, causing them to procrastinate rather than make an active decision. (This is true to a certain degree for me, because if I am anxious about a certain task I may avoid doing it or postpone it to the very last minute).

ADHD

Research has found many adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) find it hard to concentrate and thus struggle with procrastination.

A person who is not focused and is distracted with intrusive thoughts can find it hard to get started on a task, especially if that task is difficult or not interesting to them.

Is Procrastination a Mental Illness?

Although procrastination is not defined as a mental illness, in some cases, it may be symptomatic of an underlying mental health condition such as depression, OCD, or ADHD.

Why Do You Procrastinate?

When it comes to procrastination we often come up with a number of excuses to justify why we avoid doing things. According to researchers, there are 15 key reasons why people say they procrastinate:

  1. Being unsure of what needs to be done
  2. Being unsure of how to do something
  3. Avoiding wanting to do something
  4. Not bothered if it gets done or not
  5. Not bothered when something gets done
  6. Not being in the mood
  7. Leaving things till the last minute
  8. Thinking that you work better under pressure
  9. Believing that you can finish it at the last minute
  10. Lacking the motivation to get started
  11. Not remembering to start something
  12. Using sickness or poor health as an excuse
  13. Believing that the best time to start is at the right moment
  14. Thinking you need time to plan the task
  15. Postponing one task in favor of working on another

Types of Procrastination

Some researchers classify two types of procrastinators: passive and active procrastinators.

  • Passive procrastinators: Postpone tasks because they have trouble making decisions and acting on them
  • Active procrastinators: Postpone tasks deliberately because working under pressure allows them motivated
  • Perfectionist: Avoiding tasks out of the fear of not being able to complete the job perfectly
  • Dreamer: Postpones or avoids tasks because they cannot complete the job thoroughly
  • Defier: Someone that believes their time cannot be dictated and they are in full control
  • Worrier: Postpones or Avoids tasks out of fear of change or leaving the comfort zone.
  • Crisis-maker: Postpones or avoids tasks because they like working under pressure and cannot deal with the stress
  • Overdoer: Someone that takes on too many jobs which may become overwhelming and may struggle to find time to start and complete one job never may several

Procrastinators vs. Non-Procrastinators

“Non-procrastinators do not have a care in the world they are very focused individuals that have good time management and can work under pressure and to deadlines. Non-procrastinators are assertive with strong personal identity do not care what others think about them. According to psychologist Piers Steel, people who don’t procrastinate tend to be high in the personality trait known as conscientiousness, one of the broad dispositions identified by the Big Five theory of personality. People who are high in conscientiousness also tend to be high in other areas including self-discipline, persistence, and personal responsibility.

Procrastination

When procrastination becomes chronic, it may begin to have a serious impact on a person’s daily life and this can become a serious issue. In such instances, it’s not just a matter of having poor time management skills, it’s a major part of their lifestyle.

Procrastinators may avoid paying their bills on time, may come into work late, or delay starting assignments until the night before the deadline, this could include delaying gift shopping until the day before a birthday, and even filing their income tax returns late.

Procrastination can have a serious impact on a person’s daily life routine, this, in turn, can cause serious health issues including mental health. Social, professional, and financial well-being can be affected including:

  • Significant higher levels of stress and illness
  • The increased burden placed on social relationships
  • People not understanding which leads to resentment from friends, family, co-workers, and fellow students
  • Financial Difficulty from the consequences of late bills and late payment charges.

Overcoming Procrastination

  • Re-wire your mind, control your thoughts and stay focused.
  • Create a critical time path and map out each task in a journal or calendar, and set reminders.
  • Create a to-do list: To help keep you on track, consider placing a due date next to each item.
  • Take each step at a time, do not rush, and tick off each completed task. Take baby steps: Consider breaking down the items on your list into small, manageable steps.
  • Have time to meditate for 5 mins in the morning and 5 minutes before you go to bed.
  • Recognize intrusive thoughts and the warning signs, pay attention to any thoughts of procrastination and do your best to resist the urge. When you have a negative thought quickly put that thought into your imaginary bin and quickly replace it with a positive thought.
  • Create a tranquil setting where you cannot be disturbed. Eliminate all distractions including social media if you do not use them for business use.
  • Be self-disciplined, be assertive, and try to work slowly and take one task at a time.
  • Reward yourself with a self-gift for every task completed, it could be a simple bar of chocolate to a more expensive present you have been meaning to buy yourself. Knowing that once you have completed your task and looking forward to receiving your well-deserved purchase makes the job even more worthwhile.

#procrastination #selfdiscipline #intrusivethoughts #assertiveness #selfesteem #avoidance #distractions #meditation #stress #mentalillness #ocd #adhd #fear

Stress & Depression are the root cause of OCD.

Up to ½ million people in the UK have work-related stress often resulting in illness. Up to 5 million people in the UK are ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ stressed through work. ‘Stress, depression, and anxiety are the second most commonly reported work-related illnesses. https://www.stressuless.com/stress.html

Stress & Depression are the root cause of OCD.

Depression may be related to the personal stress developed at home or work. Depression may result after the onset of OCD as in the article below but Depression can also be the result of traumatic events in a person’s life such as Grief which causes a Domino Effect.

Depression | OCD-UK (ocduk.org)

The Link Between OCD and Major Depressive Disorder (verywellmind.com)

What Can Trigger a Depressive Episode? | White Light Behavioral Health (whitelightbh.com)

Renata’s Online Journal Health Update.

I will talk about 5 things relating to me and how they are impacting my life and what I am doing in terms of therapy.

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • OCD
  • Intrusive Thoughts
  • Depression

Stress

I am under a tremendous amount of stress for the following reasons:

  1. I have an ongoing dispute with British Gas and it is currently being investigated by the ombudsman.
  2. I have clients dropping like flies because they no longer can afford to pay for their websites due to the price rises of the cost of living.
  3. I am concerned about the stability of a brand new computer that the manufacturer refused to replace or give a refund for. (I am tired of all the arguing I am having to do).
  4. The uncertainty of what the future holds,

I wrote a letter 15 pages long to my GP (Doctor) after I received a letter to make an appointment for my annual medication review, but they could not send me a letter when I wrote to them (9 pages long) in May 2021. I sent both letters via email and both letters were acknowledged and put on the system with a response that a clinician will contact me…I am still waiting for a reply to my letter.

There is a clue in the 4 points I mentioned that can narrow down to the underlying root of how I am feeling, albeit I am also suffering from the aftermath of the domestic violence I endured on top of the daily stresses.

Anxiety

SYMPTOMS OF ANXIETY 

Anxiety may present with any of the following symptoms:

  • Nervousness (I do get nervous when I have to do things I am unfamiliar with relating to work or have to start a dispute to the point I actually feel sick).
  • Being overly and constantly worried (I try to keep myself busy so that I do not have to think too much about my problems).
  • Restlessness (I cannot sit and do nothing, I have to do something, I cannot do idle chitter chatter, I think sitting at a table talking nonsense whilst socializing is a waste of time, I would much rather learn something or turn the wheel to generate business than attend social gatherings -although I cannot at the moment because of my social disconnection issues).
  • Feeling a lump in your throat (If I recall experiencing fear or being in fight or flight mode I have experienced an uncomfortable feeling of finding it hard to swallow).
  • Difficulty concentrating (I have noticed that I cannot concentrate on reading books, it’s as if my mind wanders).
  • Fatigue (I am tired usually when I wake from the interrupted sleeping pattern and a combination of taking my med, so I counteract this by drinking energy drinks that are high in caffeine).
  • Irritability (I am only irritable if things do not go my way).
  • Impatience (I have a short fuse, I do not have patience and I can be rude at times although I usually do apologize I get irritable of people play me to be a fool. people should be careful to insult my intelligence).
  • Muscle tension (Not that I have noticed other than back pain or electricity shooting in the back of my neck but that could be related to Epidural Analgesia).
  • Insomnia (I take medication to send me to sleep otherwise my mind would be racing all night long and I would not be able to sleep).
  • Excessive sweating (Not that I have noticed personally)
  • Shortness of breath (If I have a panic attack, if I am extremely anxious, or if something has really upset me to the point I am becoming a nervous wreck I have been known to have a shortness of breath especially if I have been in a fight or flight mode due to domestic violence).
  • Stomachache (My mother suffered from stomach problems I always thought she was intolerant to certain foods but as I reflect my stomach is normally fine).
  • Diarrhea (Energy drinks do that but the way I relate to this it helps to flush all the toxins out and helps with weight gain).
  • Headache (If I get really stressed my head will thump).
  • Appetite changes (I have not noticed an increase or decrease in appetite but sometimes crave chocolate, but don’t we all).

OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health disorder that causes distress to the sufferer, it may be a recurrent pattern of unwanted thoughts (obsessions) such as germ contamination that lead to repetitive behaviors (compulsions) such as to disinfect and quarantine. Obsessive thoughts are uncontrollable fears, ideas, sensations, or impulses that trigger extreme distress.

Because I am stressed my OCD is more visible. I may have to change my clothes multiple times in the day if I think I have brushed past something by accident. I am unstable in keeping my balance (cerebellar atrophy).

I go through about 500 pairs of disposable gloves a day and find it hard to touch things with my bare hand without disinfecting them straight after with Dettol. It has to be Dettol as the other brands I cannot get my head around that they will do the same job even though they claim they do, maybe it is my OCD that makes me think this way.

I have a quarantined area where no one can step foot apart from me, not even my daughter can touch anything that I deemed to be sanitized. I am really sad that I cannot give my daughter a hug, I really wish I could but something stops me. I know it is not her it is me and one day I will be in a better place because in the 30 years I have suffered with OCD I have managed to control it to the point it was not so prominent until I had an onset of traumatic events that caused it to come back again with a vengeance.

I am 100% convinced if I did not have stress, did not endure traumatic events, and if I did not have depression because of the stress and I was in a HAPPY PLACE my OCD would be under control. I would not say it would be 100 % cured because depending on my stress levels it would never be totally eradicated. Some people can deal with stress better than others. Some people, smoke cigarettes, drink alcohol and take recreational or prescribed drugs. I only take prescribed drugs for my OCD and they do not work other than sending me to sleep.

I am always on the lookout for different ways I can control my OCD but I have only found hypnosis and meditation to help with the healing process. I am studying neuroplasticity and how to rewire our brains.

In order for hypnosis to work, it has to be done consistently, you will not be cured in a day, week, or month. This has to be a daily occurrence until you start noticing a change. I have completed my diploma for hypnosis and yes I did hypnotize myself successfully but I need to do it every day and with work commitments and everything else that is going on in my life I am too tired and end up falling asleep. You should do hypnosis just before you do to sleep or when you wake up. Other times you can do it during the day without distractions and religiously around the same time of the day.

Although I can do hypnotherapy I do not practice it and have never tried to do it on anyone else.

Renata Hypnotherapy Diploma
Certificate of Completion.

https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/category/obsessive-compulsive-disorder/

Intrusive Thoughts

I live in rented accommodation and have lived in the same property for 24 years. Although I have had money in the past to buy a property I was never focused and did not understand the consequences of my actions in planning for the future. I lived in the moment and never planned my life ahead.

My intrusive thoughts are:

  1. Will my abuser return to the UK to pay me a visit? (That is part of the reason why I have not left my home because I am scared he may be lurking around.
  2. Will I crash and burn and lose everything? ( I got robbed a few years ago and all my valuables were stolen. I have replaced the majority of things and do not want to lose them again.
  3. Will my daughter’s health deteriorate (she suffers from multiple sclerosis)?
  4. Will my health ever improve?
  5. Will I ever be happy and in a happy place?
  6. Thoughts that cause triggers like the death of Queen II, and although the news is sad and I know a family is grieving, it has however revived memories of my parents and my brother passing which has made me have thoughts such as if our loved ones are watching over us are they disappointed in me or are they happy that I am doing everything I can to turn my life around?

Depression

Symptoms of Depression are:

  • Continuous feelings of low mood and/or sadness (I try to keep myself busy so that I do not have time to dwell too much on all the things that have gone wrong in my life).
  • Feeling hopeless and helpless (Yes I do feel hopeless at times but I always try to find the energy to fight until I reach my goals -yes I have set goals, you have to, you need to have a plan).
  • Having low self-esteem (When I wake it is like one of those movies where the person dies and comes back again and nothing has changed, well it is like that for me, I eat, sleep and repeat and nothing changes).
  • Feeling tearful constantly (I cannot say I am tearful it takes a lot to push my buttons although British Gas (Energy Supplier) did drive me to tears, so I reported them).
  • Feelings of guilt (I feel guilty for squandering my money. Had I been focused and taught how to manage my money I would be in a different place now, but you learn the hard way I have many regrets and if I could turn back time with what I know I would have done things differently knowing what I know now. I feel guilty for being stupid with my finances and the people that I trusted). I also feel guilty for distancing myself and perhaps not contacting people sooner that have now passed away (old people).
  • Feeling irritable (I only get irritable if things do not go my way or if I have to deal with stupid people)
  • Having no motivation or interest in hobbies and interests (I have plenty of things to keep me occupied, the websites that I own and manage for my clients keep me busy, never mind my content writing. I am motivated because I have gotten this far so I am not going to give up even though when I wake it takes me a minute or two to tell myself that today may be the day that things change for the better, so I carry on).
  • Being indecisive (I sometimes procrastinate over things such as whether should I start a certain project or not, or if can it wait and I end up putting it off again and again).
  • No real enjoyment in life (I live on the internet my physical self is just a vessel that keeps me going. I do not think of my life in the physical sense I have socially disconnected from the outside world other than for the couriers and workmen that come to the property and I am happy this way. Would I do things differently if I did not have OCD or feared ever crossing paths with the people that caused me harm, I don’t think so. I am happy in my own company)
  • Feeling anxious and/or worried (My mother was a worrier and I must take after her, she also had undiagnosed OCD. Yes my intrusive thoughts do sometimes get in the way, hence I keep myself busy so that I do not have time to think).
  • Thoughts of harming yourself or suicidal feelings (This is furthest from my mind. I was at my lowest and for a millisecond it did cross my mind when I endured all the physical and mental abuse from my abuser but I told myself if I quit he would win so I turned my thoughts around to show him that everything he said was wrong and that I would be successful and he would live to regret treating me the way he did).
  • Loss of appetite – although sometimes can see an increase in appetite (I see food as energy when I am hungry I will eat, I do not watch my calories and try to eat healthy most of the time, I have no problem with my appetite, in fact, I should really lose a bit of weight considering I do not exercise because (a) I do not venture out (b) My knee pain would be too excruciating to walk very far).
  • A general lack of energy (Because of my medication, I feel so tired when I wake so I counteract that by drinking energy drinks that are high in caffeine which causes a domino effect and causes me to have an overactive bladder)
  • Low sex drive.
  • Trouble sleeping (I do have trouble sleeping but that is alleviated with the prescribed medication, however with the interruptions to my sleep because of my overactive bladder I find when I wake I am very tired so have to drink energy drinks to keep me awake).
  • Avoiding social interaction (I have social disconnection issues and I prefer my own company)
  • Difficulty maintaining family relationships (I do not have any close relatives living in the UK other than my daughter and we have a close bond, my brother and all his children live in the USA, I guess it must be very hard for their mother who lives in the UK).

What Can Trigger a Depressive Episode? | White Light Behavioral Health (whitelightbh.com)

Further Reading:

My Dreams, Aspirations & Goals

My dreams, aspirations, and goals are one day to be in a happy place living a happy life, be financially free and most of all not suffering from OCD, Stress, Anxiety, or Depression. I want to one day when I retire travel the world and photograph everything I see. I want to one day be able to document my journey and leave a legacy.

I want to motivate and inspire people so that they can be led on the right path.

I will continue to do what I am doing because I sense where I am supposed to be, is the right place to be. By continuing writing and researching I not only help myself I also help others. This online journal is my therapy because it gives me a platform to voice my knowledge, thought and opinions.

My dreams are to reach my goals.

#stress #anxiety #intrusivethoughts #ocd #obsessivecompulsivedisorder #depression

How To Deal With Intrusive Thoughts

How To Deal With Intrusive Thoughts

WHAT’S IN THIS ARTICLE:

  • What are Intrusive Thoughts
  • Types Of Intrusive Thoughts
  • What You Can Do
  • Related Mental Health Disorders
  • When to Get Help

Overview:

The majority of us from time to time experience worry, anxiety, stress, depression, grief, and fear. If you are reading this and do not agree that you have never experienced any of the above, you are not being true to yourself.

Sometimes we experience unwanted thoughts like did we shut the door behind us or did we turn off the stove. This annoying thought may get stuck in our heads until we put our minds at ease. Usually, you can ignore it and move on. But sometimes, it just keeps returning.

What are Intrusive Thoughts?

Intrusive thoughts or negative thoughts are thoughts that either lingers on your mind or pop in out of nowhere. They are part of our coping mechanisms. However unwanted lingering thoughts stem from stress, fear, and anxiety. People who have suffered trauma can affect their beliefs about the future via loss of hope, limited expectations about life, fear that life will end abruptly or early, or anticipation that normal life events won’t occur (e.g., access to education, ability to have a significant and committed relationship, good opportunities for work). All these events can manifest intrusive thoughts.

Understanding the Impact of Trauma – Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Services – NCBI Bookshelf (nih.gov)

Nearly everyone experiences Intrusive Thoughts from time to time”.

So why do these thoughts happen and what causes them?

An intrusive thought is not always related to an underlying condition. It may be caused by:

Intrusive thoughts either linger on one’s mind or simply come in out of nowhere.

These thoughts are unpleasant and unwanted and manifest in our minds, sometimes without warning or other times if we dwell on something for long periods that is worrying us.

These thoughts can sometimes be violent, sexual, or simply harmless worries.

Intrusive thoughts usually heighten when you feel, stressed or distressed, typically having an intrusive once in a while is just part of life.

It only becomes concerning if your thoughts because dangerous and uncontrollable.

In most cases, intrusive thoughts do not have any particular meaning. As long as you recognize that these are only thoughts and are controllable and harmless and that you have no desire to act on them, intrusive thoughts are usually not harmful.

However, if they’re happening often, causing significant concern, or interfering with your daily activities, it’s a good idea to talk with a doctor.

I must admit that I do suffer from intrusive thoughts occasionally, especially when I am stressed or depressed but would never act on them other than if they were related to OCD Germ Contamination. Through my learning journey, I am trying to heal. In fact, I have completed my Diploma in Hypnotherapy, and am studying Neuroplasticity.

Intrusive thoughts can range from random images to disturbing and violent ideas like punching someone in the face or hurting yourself.

(Yes I have had thoughts of punching someone in the face, but I would not go through with such a ludicrous idea because (a) my OCD germ contamination thought would kick in of actually physically touching someone, and secondly (b) it is simply a stupid thought).

Other intrusive thoughts are: did I cross-contaminate (did I touch something by accident) and does my thought warrant me to act on my compulsion such as changing my clothes because my daughter’s cat brushed past me? Usually, I try and fight the urge (CBT). Depending on how stressed I am will depend on how successfully I can resist the thought. Most of the time my germ contamination thoughts overpower me, like I said it all depends on my anxiety and stress levels.

I am aware that with OCD sometimes it is hard to fight your thoughts and you succumb to the urge. Hypnotherapy and meditation help with the process of healing.

Survivor of Domestic Violence

Whilst I was enduring emotional and physical abuse, the thought of harming myself crossed my mind, but again I knew I had to prove to the abuser that I would not be broken, no matter how many times he tried and kept saying to myself what does not kill you make you stronger. I decided no matter how low he made me feel I would not give him the satisfaction and would not give up. I decided to focus on building this site and working really hard. He eventually left with his tail between his legs because he knew he was defeated and no matter what he did or said to me was no longer working. I felt rejoiceful that he had lost his battle to destroy me and I concentrated on moving forward by suppressing all my thoughts and all the bad memories by putting the past behind me.

(I am a survivor of domestic violence, the abuser has left the country).

For anyone else experiencing intrusive thoughts, they are usually harmless as long as they can be under control. But if you obsess about them to the extent that it interrupts your day-to-day life, this can be a sign of an underlying mental health problem.

Intrusive thoughts can be a symptom of grief, stress, anxiety, depression, or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

Types of Intrusive Thoughts

OCD thoughts.

OCD thoughts depending what type of OCD you have. There are Nineteen Characteristics of OCD. With OCD the sufferer that has intrusive thoughts usually actions the compulsions to ease the discomfort of the thought lingering in their head, this could be from checking the door handles and switches to counting or avoiding certain numbers, objects, or people. This is a defense mechanism to protect the sufferer from their fear that if they do not carry out the compulsion something bad might happen.

Sexual thoughts.

Sexual thoughts are usually natural regardless of gender. An Intrusive sexual thought however when it becomes uncomfortable with or shocked by the thoughts and images to the point you are fixated on something, you should talk it over with a professional.

Experts say it’s best to remind yourself that these are just passing, automatic thoughts. They don’t define you in any way.

Violent thoughts.

Violent thoughts of punching someone in the face are harmless as long as you do not act on them.

Sometimes violent thoughts may have dark meanings like harming yourself or someone else. Usually, these thoughts are harmless, even repetitive as long as you have no intention to act on them. These thoughts are very unpleasant and if you feel you cannot cope you should speak with a professional or phone the Samaritans. You can also contact us and keep yourself anonymous if you prefer. These thoughts usually pass in time. But if you find yourself planning to follow your thoughts through, you need to speak with a professional to help to manage your emotions. Talk to a doctor or a therapist.

Negative thoughts.

Negative thoughts can be multiple ideas. An example you have imposter syndrome, you feel like a failure or if you think about something negative will happen because you essentially are manifesting it in your life. The more you think negatively the chances of whatever you are thinking will come true. It is best to rewire my mind. These thoughts should fade as your situation changes. But if they become overwhelming, you could have depression or anxiety. Talk to a mental health professional about how to control your symptoms.

However, science teaches us that In 1949, psychologist Donald Hebb laid out his compelling “assembly theory” of how the brain achieves this feat. It is best summarized by the mantra “neurons that fire together wire together.” Meaning what we reap is what we sow in other words if we continually think negatively eventually what we are thinking will happen. The idea is that neurons responding to the same stimulus connect preferentially to form “neuronal ensembles.”

What You Can Do


The best way to heal is to learn about the brain and our thoughts, learning about our conscious mind and our subconscious mind helps us understand the supercomputers we have (brain), yet, we only use a total of 5% of our entire human mind Keeping ourselves busy and distracting ourselves is a strategy to heal.

At the end of the day, most intrusive thoughts are just thoughts.

The only time they become a red flag or a signal that you actually want to do the disturbing things you’re thinking about is when you feel you are no longer in control.

If they bother you, you can take steps to cut down on their frequency and intensity.

You Can:

  • Evaluate your life and what is troubling you.
  • Recognize your thoughts and label them for what they are.
  • Distract yourself from your thoughts, watch a movie, read a book or do some scripting and write your thoughts down on paper in a journal or online.
  • Release the tension and share your thoughts with others. (There are groups and forums you can join or if your thoughts are overwhelming contact a professional like your doctor or phone the Samaritans.
  • Accept that they will pass eventually.
  • Listen to empowering motivational speakers like Jake Ducey or Dr. Caroline Leaf. Check them out on YouTube.
  • Give yourself time for the intrusive thoughts to fade away.
  • Be prepared for your unwanted thoughts to come back.
  • Learn about your mind and neuroplasticity and how your thoughts can be controlled.

Do Not:

  • Do not act or engage in dangerous thoughts, for example hurting yourself or someone else.
  • Do not be too hard on yourself. Try to question yourself and why you’re having them in the first place.
  • Do not just do nothing in the hope your thoughts will go away. Often distracting yourself from a situation will get your mind occupied with other things and your thoughts become suppressed.

Related Mental Health Disorders.

Sometimes, thoughts go beyond being intrusive.

Related mental health disorders associated with repetitive unwanted intrusive thoughts, could be a sign of OCD. This type of anxiety disorder causes the sufferer to have recurring, unwanted thoughts that they may not be able to control. This may be the compulsion to repeat certain behaviors or actions over and over again.

In contrast, delusional paranoid thoughts, such as thinking someone is always watching you or wants to hurt you, can be a sign of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

If you have these thoughts, talk to a psychiatrist for diagnosis and treatment options.

When to Get Help

If your intrusive thoughts become unmanageable and start to take over your life, you need to seek professional help or as I am doing am learning online, keeping myself busy all the time, and doing extensive research. I will not claim to be the next Paul Mckenna of this world and one day I would like to meet him, but I do believe hypnotherapy and meditation play an important part in the healing process. The issue with hypnotherapy and meditation is you have to keep at it, you cannot just do it once and expect miracles it does not work like that.

Although I have completed my Hypnotherapy Diploma and have hypnotized myself I have not done it enough times to actually see much of a difference hence I re-iterate that you need to be consistent with it.

The way I deal with intrusive thoughts is by scripting and using my online journal. I feel much better after I have released my energy and often anger either on paper or mostly online.

If you are finding life too difficult to bear and you are getting contact with intrusive dangerous thoughts, contact your Doctor or Emergency Services.

A doctor may refer you to a behavioral therapist, psychologist, social worker, or psychiatrist for further diagnosis and treatment.

Personally, for me, this is my own process of healing, learning, and passing my knowledge to others.

“An Investment In Knowledge Pays The Best Interest” – by Benjamin Fraklin

Remember we have a useful links page and depending on where you are in the world you have your Doctor you can contact or emergency services (112) this is the international number. In the UK we have (999) and for nonurgent (111).

Further Reading

My Daily Mental and Physical Self-Care Routine & How I Manage My Menta – Dr. Leaf (drleaf.com)

Debunking the Serotonin-Depression Theory (with Psychiatrist & Profess – Dr. Leaf (drleaf.com)

The Difference Between the Nonconscious, Subconscious & Conscious Mind – Dr. Leaf (drleaf.com)

The Great Psychiatry Fraud – Dr. Leaf (drleaf.com)

#intrusivethoughts #ocd #negativethoughts #neuroplasticity #neuroscience #hypnosis #meditation #learning

Renata’s Online Health Journal Update 2022!

Renata’s Online Health Journal Update 2022!

People who shy away from people with mental health disorders or disabilities and label people as damaged goods usually have their own demons to contend with”.

I need to vent and let off steam before I blow a gasket.

The last few months have taken a toll on my health. As most of you know I am the Editor of ‘Disability UK – Disabled Entrepreneur Online Journal’ and have come to near enough a standstill with my business because of my health.

My Disabilities are Invisible.

I sometimes am so depressed it takes a lot of effort to do anything, these days.

Renata’s Online Journal Health Report

The following is a snippet of what I am going through.

I am disabled, I suffer from Cerebellar Atrophy, OCD, and Depression so it is no surprise that I have highs and lows. Yet most recently I have been experiencing very bad lows.

I do not have a support system and my GP is as useful as a chocolate fire guard. https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/gp-doctor-negligence-evidence/ To understand my health you will have to understand how the last few months have been for me and what I have gone through and am still going through.

Events 2022.

  1. I have been through war and back with ‘British Gas’, which I have reported to ‘Ombudsman’ who in turn report to ‘OFGEM’. ‘British Gas’ caused me humiliation, intimidation, harassment, and emotional distress.
  2. In another incident I had 40 emails from a credit card issuer (situation now under control), again I have experienced, humiliation, intimidation, harassment, and emotional distress. (They gave me £100 as a gesture of goodwill, with the understanding that if I endure more harassment I will report them to the Ombudsman). I know what they will say but she accepted the £100, which is just a band-aid on a gaping wound.
  3. Most recently my laptop started having a blue screen and eventually died, I have not been able to do anything online for about a week. I have simply used my phone to read and reply to emails and do research. This started making me sink into a very dark place.
  4. I then had a brand new computer and not even a week old I ended up with a BSOD, you just can’t make this stuff up. https://marketingagency.cymrumarketing.com/2022/08/24/lenovo-or-windows-fault-blue-screen-of-death-bsod-2022/
  5. My internet is intermittent, and I am getting the blame game excuse (it’s not us it must be you), this is an ongoing issue in which they gave 3 months of free broadband, but the issues are starting to happen again. Virgin Media Outage in Cardiff, Wales: Current Problems and Outages • Is The Service Down? UK
  6. I have lost clients due to the rise in the cost of living and them not being able to afford their websites. (No help for small businesses I hear your cry, and yes the rich get richer and the poor get poorer).

My health.

  • I am very depressed.
  • My OCD has spiraled off the ricker scale.
  • I have intrusive thoughts.
  • I have no patience.
  • I have panic attacks.
  • I hate noise, anything from traffic to car doors opening and closing.
  • The only way I will interact is online.
  • I do not answer my phone, which no doubt has cost me a lot of business.

So there is a knock-on domino effect when people are so robotic and irritating to the point if I could shove my fist down the other end of the line or across the computer screen, I would.

I am not in a good place right now because I am struggling to stay positive and optimistic. I have been studying neuroplasticity and I should stick with it because something I thought about, the next day materialized. Therefore I need to heal and start caring about myself rather than neglecting myself.

I plan to write a book about my life, this will no doubt open a can of worms, not only for me having to recall things that I would rather not remember but for the people that have done me wrong. My book will mention all the highs and lows and perhaps it may help people to avoid the same mistakes I made, in my relationships, and in my career, not only how everything over the years has affected my health and how I am trying to heal.

“I want to make a difference in this world and help people like me or worse off than me”.

I may not physically want to interact but a virtual connection I am fine with, although I won’t be doing anything for a few weeks because I need to recover from all the trauma I have had to endure over the last few months.

This all goes towards documenting my health so that it all gets put on the NHS database. There is a reason behind my madness.

It saddens me that the people I have reached out to on a personal level, who said they were going to get back in touch never have. I assume that they have reached their own conclusions and do not want to interact with someone that has disabilities. I suppose they see me as damaged goods, but labeling someone in such a way is not only hurtful but incorrect because we all have something going on in our lives thus we can all be labeled the same way. In fact, it will be hard to find a person that has not been screwed over in some way or another and how it affected them mentally. Usually, people who shy away from people with mental health disorders have their own demons to contend with and cannot handle yours. I do not see myself as damaged I see myself as someone who can overcome obstacles and then write about them. Just because I am having a bad day today does not mean I will be having a bad day tomorrow. No two days are the same. Yes, I have disabilities but there are millions of people in the same boat as me or worse off. You need to find the strength to make your story your superpower. Everyone has a book waiting to be written. There’s No Such Thing As Being “Damaged Goods” In A Relationship—Here’s Why (bolde.com)

I am like a bear with a sore head at the moment, as a consequence, I avoid talking over the phone as much as possible. When I do have to call people, as an example the other day, I nearly bit an IT engineer’s head off when I was having trouble accessing my site. I did apologize afterward about my outburst but I have a very short fuse and my temperament is not great, I can come off at times as being rude, (I try not to be, but cannot help it if people push my buttons). However, I also get very obnoxious, patronizing, and condescending individuals and all I want to do is punch their faces. I am no good at interacting physically, which is fortunate.

I have reported ‘British Gas’ to the Ombudsman and have to wait on an outcome. I feel very lethargic and am finding it hard to be optimistic right now. I should stay positive but is hard when I have to deal with some things that cause my health to worsen. It is as if I make one step forward and two steps back.

My OCD has gone through the roof and where I was making progress the last few months have basically thrown all my hard work away. Having a mental health disorder like depression which causes an onset of intrusive thoughts causing you to have compulsions to ease the anxiety. it is a vicious circle. and that is why I do not interact physically.

#onlinediary #onlinejournal #scripting #journalling #blogging #pip #depression #stress #anxiety #ocd #mental health #obsessivecompulsivedisorder

Impact of Energy Prices On Vulnerable People

Impact of Energy Prices On Vulnerable People.

Vulnerable people are being hospitalized because their energy supplies are being cut off because of nonpayment and arrears.

Some vulnerable people need energy supplies more so than the normal healthy person, this could be oxygen tanks, to mobility equipment.

Vulnerable people are being hospitalized after having gas and electric cut off (msn.com)

I have always known that large corporations do not care about people. If you look at the bigger picture, if you or I murdered someone we would go to jail regardless if we did it ourselves or hired someone to do it for us. So why is it that world leaders can start wars and get away with murder?

The whole point of wars is to raise inflation, people tend to panic buy, by worrying about price rises. But for organizations such as utility providers that are on a gravy train getting compensated by the federal reserve, they do not care about your well-being either.

It is all about the sheer greed for money and power.

BullionVault

Hidden Secrets of Money – Mike Maloney. – CYMRU DIGITAL MARKETING BUSINESS JOURNAL (cymrumarketing.com)

Politicians kicking the can down the road: Liz Truss: No more sticking plasters to fix the energy crisis (msn.com)

Liz Truss vows to act ‘immediately’ and will help millions ‘within a week’ with their ‘energy bills’ if she is elected as PM – London Business News | Londonlovesbusiness.com

OFGEM the ombudsman for energy suppliers is the government. The energy suppliers and the governments work hand in hand. Ofgem is supposed to work with people and not against them: However, Samantha Allen, chief executive of the NHS in the North East and Cumbria, hit out at Ofgem for halting energy supplies for vulnerable people who haven’t paid. Risks to clinically vulnerable people (northeastnorthcumbria.nhs.uk) Do you see that OFGEM is on the side of the energy supplier and not the people?

It will be interesting to see if what I say is true, because I have reported British Gas to OFGEM and I have until October 14th, 2022 to get a response.

The MPs are getting richer and the rest of us are getting poorer.

So it is no surprise there is an investigation going on how MPs have claimed taxpayer’s money to pay for the energy bills.

Ministers’ claims for gas, electricity, and water came to just over £195,000 in 2021–’22, according to an analysis of data from IPSA.

It also showed since 2019 that MPs have claimed just over £692,000 to cover these utility costs, with £538,000 alone going on heating bills.

Suella Braverman, favorite to be named home secretary if Ms. Truss wins the leadership contest, has claimed £7,160 for household utilities since the 2019-’ 20 financial period.

Education secretary James Cleverly, predicted to become foreign secretary, billed taxpayers £4,142 in energy and water bills at the same time.

Among senior Labour MPs making the claims was the party’s deputy leader Angela Rayner, who has been handed £2,318 to cover energy and water bills since 2019.

MPs claimed almost £200,000 from taxpayer to heat second homes (msn.com)

You have to bear in mind that these people in power have never experienced poverty for themselves, they have never had to worry about keeping a roof over their heads or putting food on the table let alone finding money to pay bills.

It is ironic that the same people go around preaching how someone should budget their money and send you to places like stepchange .org when you already have a clear picture that you do not have enough money coming in to cover your bills. So how can these charities help other than to give donations?

It really rattles me that the people at the top preach to the rest of us about money yet they are the ones causing us to get into debt.

Note From The Editor

Think of it this way the world is overpopulated, and the governments are forking a shed load for vulnerable people and people with disabilities. The governments (UK are in trillions of debt to the EU for Brexit, so where is the money going to come from to clear the UK debt?

I am now on par with managing my money after months of sheer heartache with British Gas. This cost of living, British Gas, and my creditors have caused me to dive into a deep state of depression and some days find it hard to function properly. If Covid was not bad enough and I lost a lot of business now I am having clients dropping like flies because they cannot afford to run their websites any longer. I do not see the government helping small businesses, do you?

I do try to keep myself busy and I try to learn something new every day. Talking to people does not help (not for me anyway), what advice can someone give, if they are not more qualified than me, or know my personal circumstances?

Knowledge is Power“.

I am not saying do not talk to someone, in fact, I advise you to talk to a friend, family, or colleague, especially if life is becoming unbearable. Even go as far as talking to your GP (Doctor) but if it can’t wait phone A&E or ER.

What I find is venting my thoughts on this site helps. It not only helps me but can help someone else like me.

You do not have to use your real name just set up a Gmail email and register on here to also vent. In fact, I have even got categories called “Online Journal General” and “I Need To Vent”.

My final recommendation is not to stop paying your bills altogether, but instead, pay what you can afford while at the same time reducing your energy usage. This will hurt the energy suppliers’ profits. I have elected to pay monthly by bank transfer rather than direct debit, this gives me greater control over my bank and does not give energy suppliers a license to help themselves.

How To Reduce Your Energy Usage Home & Business – CYMRU DIGITAL MARKETING BUSINESS JOURNAL (cymrumarketing.com)

#energyprices #vulnerablepeople #mentalhealth #ofgem #enerysupply #energyproviders #vulnerabledeaths

PIP Personal Independence Payment Delays And The Repercussions On Mental & Physical Health.

PIP Personal Independence Payment Delays And The Repercussions On Mental & Physical Health.

Disclaimer Scotland: People in Scotland will no longer be able to make a new claim for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) from August 29 when the benefit will be replaced by Adult Disability Payment (ADP) in all 32 council areas across the country. At present, 13 local authorities are now offering ADP to adults over 16 and under State Pension age living with a disability, long-term illness or a physical or mental health condition.

Most people don’t like complaining and will not make a formal complaint about anything let alone the DWP, because they believe it would be a waste of time and could cause a knock-on effect on their other benefits.  For those that do complain and, after many months of pursuing, end up giving up.  The ones that are determined come away with a pathetic apology and feel they have hit a brick wall. They accept the mediocre admission by the DWP or Atos, Capita, that these organizations made a mistake and nothing else happens, their mental health is simply disregarded without a second thought.

ANN ABRAHAMS – REPORT

However, the most recently released report reveals that a tiny number of people pursue their complaints further and end up being awarded large sums in compensation. The report is called ‘Small mistakes, big consequences’ and is written by Ann Abrahams, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman. Ann Abraham should be a name that should stand out as well as your local MP.

Remember nothing happens quickly after all these people are not in a hurry to find money to put food on their tables, only you are”…

(The report can be downloaded using the following link: Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman Small mistakes, big consequences HC 6 (publishing.service.gov.uk)

MEDICAL EVIDENCE

Your illnesses and disabilities should be corroborated with medical evidence and letters from GPs and consultants. This payment is to help with your daily living and is not an alternative to being a benefit bum and living off benefits. This payment is for people who truly deserve the extra money because of their disabilities. The reason why the Government is clamping down is because of too many fake, lazy individuals that see this as free money.

DELAYS

Delays are causing people to become ill through worry and stress. https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/stress/what-is-stress/ Hundreds of thousands of disabled people are having to wait for £300 million of vital support, according to a new analysis from Citizens Advice.

Citizens Advice said: “PIP, which can see people with an illness, disability or mental health condition receive up to £157 a week, is a lifeline for millions of people, yet the government is playing with people’s lives and their health.

There are currently around 327,000 Disabled people on the waiting list, with an average waiting time of five months. Citizens Advice projects this means £300 million of payments that would be awarded are being held up, after all the government needs to look after themselves first before thinking about the other half of the population. You are not their priority, although you should be.

“Waiting for this payment is having a huge impact on people’s lives. Delays in assessment mean that support is held up, forcing people into impossible choices as they try to make ends meet.”

STATISTICS

  • People are facing humiliation as 1 in 5 people have needed to go to a food bank in the last 3 months who have also had an issue with PIP. Many of those waiting for a decision will also be eligible for the £150 disability benefits cost-of-living support payment but are unlikely to get it before October’s mammoth energy price hike.
  • There are more people coming to Citizens Advice for help with PIP than with any other issue in fact an astonishing 41% more than any other issue.
  • Around 150 people are contacting advisors at Citizens Advice every hour for one-to-one help, and its webpage on “How the DWP makes a decision on PIP claims” had 27,700 page views last month, up 56% year on year.

CITIZENS ADVICE

Citizens Advice is calling on the Government to take urgent action to relieve pressure in the system and help get money to people who desperately need it. It is calling for an emergency plan from the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions to urgently tackle this backlog, including reducing the number of claimants required to have a medical assessment, which is the main reason for these delays – and extending the award period so people have to reclaim less often.

The severe PIP assessment backlog is not just affecting new claimants but also those seeking reassessments or needing extensions to their claims. These lengthy delays are having a substantial impact on their applications for other benefits such as blue parking badges, bus passes, and Motability vehicles.” https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/bus-passes-for-the-disabled/

Backlogs in the disability benefit assessment system are having significant knock-on effects on disabled people’s ability to live independently, new evidence has shown.

These delays are also causing further turmoil for disabled people whose support needs have increased and believe they should now be entitled to higher PIP payments.

The evidence has come from the Benefits and Work website, which has heard from a string of existing PIP recipients who say the delays are causing tremendous emotional distress and significant problems.

In March, Disability News Service (DNS) reported how the backlog of disabled people waiting for a PIP assessment had more than trebled in the last five years, from 88,500 in October 2016 to nearly 312,000 by December 2021.

DNS has also reported on similar problems with the Access to Work system, with DWP figures showing the number of disabled people waiting for decisions on their applications has more than quadrupled in a year from just 4,890 in March 2021 to 20,909 in March this year.

One of the ways the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is dealing with the lengthening PIP assessment backlog is by providing temporary (3 months), short-term extensions to PIP claimants who are waiting for their benefits to be reviewed.

Editors’ Opinion – “Do they not have enough unemployed people to do a bit of paperwork? How about outsourcing the work would be another idea and finally only appraise the people that have medical evidence to corroborate their illnesses”?

The Government is purposely dragging its heels in order to save money.

“This is Evil, a Disgrace, and a Shambles”.

Vicky Foxcroft, Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people said:

“With the cost-of-living crisis hitting disabled people particularly hard, it is shocking this government has not got a grip of the PIP backlog, which has been going on for months now”.

“Short-term fixes aren’t enough anymore. Disabled people deserve so much better than this; Tory ministers need to get a grip on this backlog, especially given the impact it is now having on other benefits for disabled people.

“A future Labour government would invest properly in disabled people, ensuring they had the support needed.”

A DWP spokesperson said:

“We closely monitor the progress of PIP cases awaiting assessment and take all steps possible to ensure claimants receive the vital support they require”.

“We can and do make in-house decisions on award reviews without referral to assessment providers where necessary and use a blend of phone, video, and face-to-face assessments to ensure support is given as quickly as possible.”

People Who Suffer From OCD

Daily Living Descriptor 6 – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

The Upper Tribunal has recently made a decision (CPIP/3760/2016) about how people with OCD can claim points under PIP.

BACKGROUND

The PIP Regulations say that people who can’t do an activity listed in one of the PIP descriptors safely, repeatedly, to an acceptable standard, and no more than twice as slowly as a non-disabled person, shouldn’t be counted as being able to do that activity for the purposes of PIP. (I keep a note of my health online and so does my daughter. I think as a sufferer of OCD the form does not actually cover all the different types of OCD). https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/category/renatas-online-journal/ & https://disabledentrepreneur.uk/category/zena-online-journal/

Therefore there has been some confusion about people with OCD, who usually can do an activity perfectly well, but have to do it over and over again or in particular ways or at particular times.

(Assessors who are not specialized in diagnosing OCD or any other illness should not have any input about the claim – just because they have passed e-learning does not make them any more qualified than you or me).

The PIP descriptors and the regulations didn’t deal with this sort of situation very well and so lots of people with OCD lost out on awards. Now the Upper Tribunal has looked at the issue and made a judgment that will help people with OCD to earn points for PIP.

WHAT THE UPPER TRIBUNAL DECIDED

The Upper Tribunal case was about a person who took a very long time to get dressed because their OCD meant they had to repetitively try on lots of different outfits until she found one she was happy to wear. The DWP argued that this long time didn’t count for the purposes of PIP because it was just the person’s choice to try lots of clothes on. The Upper Tribunal, however, held that because the person’s hesitations and repetitive behavior were ‘the consequence of her health condition’, she was entitled to points because it took her more than twice as long as a non-disabled person to dress. But the UT did say that if the longer time had not been a consequence of her health condition, she would not have been entitled to points.

This decision is important because the principle that delays in being able to complete a task because of the consequences of a mental health condition like OCD can be applied to all descriptors, not just dressing. So a person with OCD who can eat perfectly well but who takes an hour to eat because of obsessive rituals about arranging the table, or a person who can wash perfectly well but who does so eleven times three times a day, could claim points under those PIP descriptors.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU

If you have OCD for example and have obsessive rituals or other behavior which means that you take much longer to do activities of daily living like cooking, eating, dressing, and so on, then you now can use this Upper Tribunal decision to strengthen your argument for claiming PIP.

Note that you will still have to be able to show that you have been diagnosed with OCD or a similar mental health condition and you do in fact have behavior that means you take much longer than a non-disabled person to complete daily living activities. Good strong evidence from people who know you will be needed.

You will also have to show that your behavior is a consequence of your mental health condition and not just your own preferred way of doing things. Showing that you can’t change the way you do things even if it is against your interests will be useful – eg that you miss appointments because you can’t get there in time owing to a dressing ritual.

DIFFERENT TYPES OF OCD

OCD is a very complicated illness it is not just about washing or checking or taking too long to shower, dress or cook food. It may be the fear of germ contamination (as I have). I know logically we are surrounded by germs but the thought of contracting something or being harmed through direct contact with an unsanitized area does not bear thinking about. I am cocooned in my own surrounding where I can keep my intrusive thoughts under control as best I can. My disabilities are not just OCD, they are Depression, Social Disconnection, and Cognitive Impairment (Cerebellar Atrophy) to name a few.

TIMING

As with everything, it all takes time and you are not a priority.

Upper Tribunal decisions take time for your claims, mandatory reconsideration, and appeals, and it may take some months before DWP and assessors finally make the decision.

Unfortunately for you, this causes considerable stress on your mental health and pressure on your finances. You can either suffer and do nothing other than wait or you could complain.

If your appeal is taking longer than expected you have grounds to contact the ombudsman.

If you have been treated unfairly and given the DWP and Tribunal time to respond and they have not within the timeframe then you need to start getting all your evidence together to build a case. You can take it even further and take it to an Ombudsman (Last Resort).

You can read the full judgement herehttps://www.gov.uk/…/ml-v-secretary-of-state-for-work-and-p…

USEFUL LINKS:

PIP delays leave disabled people hundreds of millions of pounds out of pocket – Citizens Advice

How do some claimants get thousands of £££ in DWP compensation (benefitsandwork.co.uk)

How to use DWP for compensation? – LegalBeagles Forum

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upper_Tribunal

http://www.justice.gov.uk/about/hmcts/tribunals

adminappeals@hmcts.gsi.gov.uk

Suing DWP for compensation … — Scope | Disability forum

Complain to us: getting started | Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO)

FINAL THOUGHTS FROM THE EDITOR!

If an organization or entity causes you to become unwell because of their actions, they should be held responsible and should pay for damages.

If people are becoming mentally and physically unwell because of the Government’s actions then the claimants should be awarded compensation.

If you have been affected by:

  • Emotional Distress (causing, stress, anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts, and making your mental illness worse).
  • Indirect Discrimination (entity assuming because you have an invisible illness you are classed as normal).
  • Harassment
  • Intimidation
  • Humiliation (having to go to food banks or being pitied because you are disabled).

Consequences

If your illness gets worse because of an entity’s direct action and in the cases of auto-immune diseases you can relapse because of stress: https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/living-better-with-ms-guide/triggers-that-can-cause-ms-flares. then, you have under the human rights act the right to take further action. https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/advice-and-guidance/what-direct-and-indirect-discrimination

Flawed System

The PIP system is flawed, it employs people who are not qualified in the field of the illness (one needs to be a specialist in the field and should undergo years of training as well as qualifications to determine what the claimant is suffering from). The system is designed to degrade people and to make them unwell. The more people that become unwell the more money Big Pharma makes and that is how the world goes round.

Making a Complaint

Do exhaust all avenues of complaint procedures before contacting the ombudsman and do collate as much evidence as you can. If you have a blog or social media page share it with the people I have mentioned in this article. People usually take notice if you have a professional site and you know what you are talking about.

If you want our help and need a letter we can send you a template with all users, names, and addresses and you fill in the blanks. Our template letters are £5.00 and you will get a download link once the payment has been processed, if you want us to write the letter for you it will cost £25 per 1000 words. Your privacy and data will be safeguarded with a non-disclosure agreement.

PIP Mailing Address is:

Personal Independence (2), 2 Mail Handling Site (A), Wolverhampton., WV98 18B

Tel Number:

0800 121 4433 ( be prepared to wait 45 minutes to be put through)

Email:

contactus@capita-pip.co.uk

** Just to explain when I spoke to PIP today over my daughter’s award the woman said that my daughter or I would have to submit evidence by post. Knowing they had an email I said could it not be done electronically (I bit my tongue about saving the environment) and the woman I spoke to blatantly lied and said there is no email address.

The amount of time I had to wait to be put through could easily cause someone who has multiple sclerosis or any other auto-immune disease and suffers from bad stress and anxiety to easily relapse. Furthermore, I do not know who they employ because I had to spell Alemtuzumab out even though I clearly told the woman the word can be found on www.lemtrada.com.

I am not looking forward to the assessment my daughter is due to have because if they make my daughter perform like a circus monkey that will mean I will have to intervene. My daughter documents her health in her online journal on this platform. I am not looking forward to having to deal with these people.

Contact Us For a Template Using The Form Below:

Further Reading

DWP admits wrongly rejecting disabled people for benefits at record rate | The Independent

People who claim PIP or were denied benefit payments could be owed £13,000 due to rule change | The Sun

‘I’ve recently had my PIP benefit claim turned down – how can I appeal it’ – Mirror Online

Thousands of people ‘wrongly’ denied PIP disability payments after surging in DWP appeals – Mirror Online

#dwp #pip #personalindependencepayments #invisibledisabilities #indirectdiscrimination #humanrights #equalityact #ocdandpip #emotionaldistress #humiliation

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