When one submits to the needs and concerns of others, he or she risks him or herself to be taken advantage of. In fear of this risk, people with OCPD take an aggressive approach to having their own needs and concerns satisfied first.
People with OCPD are preoccupied with finishing first because their all-or-nothing thinking causes them to be fearful of being the nice guy who finishes last.
Inside every person with OCPD, there is a very good heart. As children, most OCPDers were delightfully obedient, doing everything that they’re supposed to do (orderliness) with so much heart and excellence. Being able to do this and fulfill their duty as a good, considerate child provided them with a sense of joy.
But with age, these children discover bitterly that the world does not appreciate their devotion. They learn that sharing only leaves them with less, being honest only leaves them more vulnerable, helping others only wastes their scarce time, and that “nice guys finish last.”
When their all-or-nothing thinking leads them to believe that they have been allowing themselves to be treated like a “doormat” to the rest of the world for far too long, many oppressed OCPDers abandon their identity as a considerate “nice” person and take upon a new badass identity (such simplification of the infinite number of different options down to two extreme options is another classic example of all-or-nothing decision-making).
Though people with OCPD are in fact good-hearted people who are just scared, all that the rest of the fear-free world sees is selfish people.
STRENGTHS OF THOSE WITH OCPD WHO OVERCOME THEIR FEAR OF BEING TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF
- You are such a selfless and considerate person – Instead of feeling anxious about their portions being hunted down by you, people trust you and feel relaxed around you. Your selflessness is so great that it influences others to be selfless as well.
- You are a person of strong integrity – Regardless of whether or not you get a reward out of it, you do good because you know it is the right thing to do.
SO WHAT NOW?
HOW TO CO-EXIST WITH THE OTHER (OCPD):
Understand that your all-or-nothing thinking gives you a distorted perception of reality. Challenge yourself to think of the middle-ground every time that your mind gives a warning or a conclusion about others taking advantage of you. While you are with your good friends, stop yourself from thinking that every act between you and them is a deal or a transaction. When you do get the short-end of a deal, ask yourself first if the amount of your loss in that deal is really important enough to make a fuss about it. If it isn’t important enough, try to forget about it and move on without keeping track of your losses.
HOW TO CO-EXIST WITH THE OTHER (OTHERS):
Understand that your OCPD friend is the way he or she is because of fear, not because he or she does not know how to be selfless. Therefore, being selfless to your OCPD friend in hopes of teaching him or her how to be selfless is a lost cause. The best thing you can do for your OCPD friend is to show him or her that you are a trustworthy person, that his or her fear does not need to extend towards you. Continuously failing to appreciate his or her selflessness will cause your OCPD friend to trust you less and less. More than anyone else, your OCPD friend really needs encouragement and appreciation for even his smallest acts of selflessness. If you sense that your OCPD friend is having all-or-nothing thoughts about being taken advantage of, help your friend find the middle-ground in his or her assessment of the deal at hand.
HOW TO LET GO OF YOUR FEAR OF BEING TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF (OCPD):
Understand that your all-or-nothing thinking was responsible for teaching you a false lesson in life. Despite how convincing your mind was in its extremely pessimistic assessment of your past acts of selflessness, the world did not walk all over you like a doormat. Begin today acting against that all-or-nothing thinking and allow yourself to be reeducated.