Where're My Keys? Here They Are. Er, Where're my Keys? (also titled: I Don't Have OCD, I Swear)


Look, I have never been diagnosed with OCD, but I have found that as I get older, I have weird things that need to be "just so" or I get all wigged out.  Here are a few:

My car keys--I KNOW I just pulled them out of the ignition and put them in my purse.  That doesn't mean I won't check, double check, and re-check for them before I actually lock and close the door.

Locking the house at night--Again, I KNOW I just turned the knob to lock up.  I clearly remember doing it...but there I go again, padding through the house in my lovely nighttime attire to check one last time before bed.   (And sheesh, it's not like a deadbolt is going to keep someone out who really wants to get in.)

Making the bed with freshly washed sheets--The only time I ever strive to make the bed absolutely perfectly is right after I've washed and dried all the bedding.  And then, it doesn't matter if I'm going to get into said bed mere minutes after making it...it must. be. perfect.  Hospital corners?  Check.  All pillows accounted for?  Check.  Top sheet folded over just so?  Check and double check.  Weird.

Labels out--Yeah, I like to see what's in my cupboards, so what?  Is it so wrong that I also prefer everything to be arranged by size, brand and type of food.  Is it?  IS IT?

OK, enough about me...what are slightly OCD things YOU do?  (Please, make me feel better!)

Posted by The Naked Redhead

17 comments:

missedita said...

When I leave the house and lock the door, I always have to turn the handle and make sure that it's locked. My mom has a 'before I can leave the house' tick also - she always turns this one light on and off three times before leaving, so I blame my door thing on her.

Aside from that, I have this 'if I think about it' policy. It's like, if I'm zipping through my Google Reader, and I see something and a bit of my brain goes, 'Oh, hmm, that's interesting' but I keep going, that little bit of my brain goes, 'Ok, I'm still thinking about it and I'm not going to give you peace until you go back and look at it.' Same for text that I passed by, only having half finished. If I think about it, I have to go back and finish reading it before I can put my attention towards anything else.

Alexandra said...

I've just arranged the clothes in my closet. By color. Rainbow order. Is that OCD enough?

Alison said...

I have to turn the door knobs to make sure that they're locked. And I have to test public bathroom locks a few times.

My clothes have to face the left and are sorted by style (dress, sweatshirt, short-sleeved...) and color-coded. I've also been known to obsessively lint roll myself.

My strangest quirk involves spreadsheets. A lot of spreadsheets. I have one scheduling every class I'll take until I finish my B.S. There's one listing every book I've read in the last 3 years--Title, author, number of pages, and date finished. Then, there's one for my budding domestic goddess. I have the multi-colored Fiesta dishes, so I have a spreadsheet listing every dish I have, color, and quantity.

My great-grandmother used to label EVERYTHING with the date that she bought it or when she had last changed the batteries. I blame her for my behaviors.

The Naked Redhead said...

@missedita--I do the reading thing, too! It drives me batty, but my mind will not let it go.

@Alexandra--NICE. It may be OCD, but it's still awesome. :)

Jason said...

If the lights are off in a room with multiple light switches all switches MUST be down. I've stubbed many a toe walking across a dark room to make sure of this.

That Kind Of Girl said...

Whenever I'm the last person at work and lock up alone, I quadruple-check the locks and throw myself against the door like a friggin' moose to make sure it isn't somehow magically still open.

I have a labels-out kitchen too. I always get amused thinking that if it somehow ended up on TV (Hoarders, anyone?), the entire shelf running along my ceiling would be a blur of edited-out labels.

Also, and I hope this is a common one, if I flex a muscle on one side of my body (squeeze my toes together, wink one eyes, tense a tendon in my neck, etc.), I have to flex the opposite muscle on the other side in exactly the same way, then usually end up alternating back and forth until they both feel "equally squeezed".

Actually, you know, when I write that one out, it sounds totally nutso. I'm pretty good about controlling it when I'm around other people, though. For a few months when I was 18 or so, it gave me an annoying facial tic that made me look really, really sarcastic all the time.

The Naked Redhead said...

@Alison--I'm kind of envious of your spreadsheets.

@Jason--That totally makes sense. I get that way about the screws in the light plates...they need to be horizontal.

PicsieChick said...

Anyone walking into my quite-messy home would not guess that I have any kind of OCD, but here's the goods:

clothing faces right, organized by type and by rainbow colour

cutlery drawer - each type of cutlery of the same size must be stack and not mixed up with each other

books organized by genre, author and size on my bookshelf

CDs (the ones that are actually put away) in the case with label horizontal, on the shelf in alphabetical by artist, then chronological order

we give out a lot of candy at Halloween, putting together a lunch bag of the assortment for each child. to make sure each child gets pretty much the same amount of candy, I create a spreadsheet every year - even counting the number of items in the bags of candy sold by weight.

there are possibly more, but I think I have incriminated myself (or am I bragging?) enough by now.

Hugs and butterflies,
~T~

Lara said...

oh my god. okay...

- definitely have the labels facing forward
- I force myself to finish using a bath product before I get a new bottle out of the closet and add it to the shower. (this keeps clutter down)
- shoes off as soon as I get in the house and put back on the shoe rack
- bed has to be made in the morning
- try to have dishes washed before bed
- there really is a place for everything and everything is in its place
-clothes have to be facing one way my closet

I could go on.

and about checking your keys before you get out of the car... you know how you automatically put on your seatbelt to the point that you don't even think about it? I had to force myself to trust myself that I would put my car keys in my purse. (Oh, and I also keep a spare in my wallet! Ha!)

I really don't think these things are all that bad. For one, if you get in the habit of keeping things tidy and putting them away after you use them, it makes real clean-up time less stressful. It also keeps the chaos to a minimum. I'm sure the people who check and stay organized have probably had the awful exprience of locking their keys in their car or losing something very important to them. The sting of loss and the humbling of a mistake was a teaching moment where you don't want to experience that again. Some people never learn from thier mistakes... us OCD-ers never want to make them again.

magnolia said...

i do the key thing, too, but that's probably because i locked my keys in my car three times in one week when i first started driving. i also started carrying nine keychains for three keys so that i would never be able to forget that the keys were in the ignition (they hit me in the knee the entire time i drove).

my school supplies have always had to be organized a certain way. i must have a certain brand of pen, a certain style of notepad, a certain type of highlighters (in the same six colors). i don't like to switch ink colors in my journal; i like to carry the same color through the entire book. i have been known to spend 15 minutes looking for a properly-colored pen before spending 10 minutes writing about how nothing special happened in a given day.

i prefer not to think of this as OCD. i am just really, really meticulous.

RMb said...

i do everything on this list. i'm very very anal about stuff: its like the radiohead song "everything in its right place".

i have to tidy up my house before i leave it (i HATE coming home to a mess). this applies for bed time as well.

i perpetually worry about leaving my bank card at the check out counter. i have to check my wallet when i'm walking away from the register, when i'm in the parking lot, when im in the car, when i get home & once i'm inside putting my purse away.

i have to clear my call history & my txt history at least once a week. i'm kind of afraid my husband will think i'm hiding something...

@alison: i too am jealous of your spreadsheets.

Laurel said...

I totally do the bed thing too! I almost never make my bed unless I've just washed my sheets, and then everything has to be perfectly even, straight, tucked in, and folded exactly right.

I'm not that way about my car keys, but if I've got something important, (ie, super-big paper for school, student ID for getting into activities, that kind of thing) I will check about three times until I force myself to relax and quit it.

Also-
My clothes are meticulously organized. Everything goes from left to right and HAS to face right. Coats and sweaters are arranged from heaviest to lightest. Shirts are arranged by color and shade, down the rainbow. Pants go from darkest to lightest. It gets even more complicated than this but I'll just give you that much. :D

My backpack for school has a strict organization too. Each pocket holds different things, and those things are arranged so the heaviest is at the back.

I don't think it's quite OCD, it's just that some parts of our lives are easier when we have them a certain way.

The Naked Redhead said...

YES! I'm just gonna call you all my little band of anal-retentive nutjobs. Love it. :)

rsparks said...

I NEED to have the volume on the TV or car stereo on an even number. Odd numbers make me uncomfortable.

Herself said...

Oh. God. Here's where I reveal too much and 'someone' sends someone to commit me.

Right -

When counting, I NEED everything to add up to eleven. If I'm counting money, somehow I need to make it all add up to some form of 11, like 44 or 111. I once was on a bus with 12 windows and I couldn't make them into 11. I got off at the next stop.

I alphabetise my books, by author. I alphabetise my very large DVD collection. I also have spreadsheets with inventories of them on my laptop should anyone borrow anything. Its like a little OCD rental system.

I eat food by a strict ratio system. If I'm having a burger and fries, for instance - I have to mentally calculate throughout the meal how many fries (approx) I can eat so that I'll have the right burger bites : fries ratio by the end.

I make lists incessantly. For every occasion. I have several holiday packing lists depending on what type of trip it is. I have one called "Weekend, Non-Formal" - you get the idea.

I CANNOT leave my toast to pop by itself. I have to use the manual popper. Same goes for the microwave. I cannot let the beep happen automatically. I have to stop the microwave myself.

I presume someone has traced my IP address and the Asylum people are on the way. It was nice knowing you all. :) PS. I'm 22. This can only get worse.

NatalieCottrell said...

Oh, there are so many OCD ticks I could list off, but the most out of control is checking, and rechecking, and rechecking....oh, and rechecking that my alarm is set for the correct time about twenty times before falling asleep. Never ONCE have I mis-set my alarm, but I still double check the time and that the little dots are in all the right spots (indicating correct time of day - AM or PM - and that the alarm is, in fact, active). This can take up to half an hour of my life daily.

christel42 said...

Wow. Y'all are nuts! And so am I. My biggest & oddest OCD issue is with dish towels. You know, the one you hand on the handle to the oven? I have to fold and straighten it about 50 times a day, and GOD FORBID if it's even slightly off balance! Plus, it must be clean, or at a minimum fresh. I must use one every day. My boyfriend has just become accustomed to it after 4 years of co-habitation. I blame my parents. They have way more OCD issues than I, and they totally do the same thing with the dish towels.

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