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Featured Obsessions that change a lot

Discussion in 'Obsessions and Interests' started by Full Steam, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member

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    I've read a lot about obsessions and it's seems that most people report a small number that stay relatively consistent for years.

    For me I can get a new obsession at any time that will start draining focus and attention away from whatever else it is I'm doing.

    I can sometimes focus this into a mini obsession around a customer project which is great. (mini obsession is probably not a true obsession, but more like a deep focus and deeper than NT would likely do).

    But then along comes an idea for a new business, or a (self) diagnosis of ASD, and I'm off down a deep rabbit hole with everything else behind me.

    Does that fit any one else's experiences?
     
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  2. Mia

    Mia Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Since the internet, my absolute focus on art has changed, and my spouses on music has changed a little as well. I find that I go off on tangents and learn different things on a regular basis, which lead to other things, then I want to understand more and watch you tube for awhile.

    Many of the aspies on the site have particular focuses but also other things that they become interested in. Think that the long term interests come and go and I return to them eventually. Usually its when I hit some sort of snag and have to problem solve it that my interest wavers for awhile. But, there is so much to know.

    Last week I fixed my car's remote starter, taught myself how to make vegetarian sushi, made a drawing salve to remove a splinter, took apart a can opener and fixed it, reread parts of the golden bough and emma and some of tennyson. I think of these activities as normal parts of my week. So there is no fixed interest that people do all the time, throughout their lives without some interruptions; sometimes our other interests happen for awhile. One of the things I've begun to understand here, is that people do have lots of interests and other exclusive ones, but I don't think it's absolutely carved in stone.
     
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  3. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member

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    That sounds just like me.

    My whole day is online (web design & digital marketing) and the opportunities for going off one tangents are endless.
     
  4. hiraeth

    hiraeth solitude is an art V.I.P Member

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    I'm like the "one thing for several years" type and it is rather annoying sometimes, possibly the exact opposite of you. :p Balance is good. Too much of one thing always gets old after a while but taking a break and doing other things never seem to reach the same level of engagement because I still think I am "engaged to the other thing" or whatever. "Most people" I seem to observe are somewhere in the middle. I would guess that the most ideal kind is probably to have both long term / stable as well as short term / brief intense burst of energy special interests.
     
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  5. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member

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    My obsessions have lasted for a max of 2 week's and then, I cannot even stand to think of them.

    I do have a long term one, that actually I never thought was one before: but I am obsessed with colours and they must match. It seems mild enough, but I get into a major stress when I want a particular colour and cannot get it. Currently it is red. I so badly want a long red winter skirt. I turned a red dress that my husband hates, into a shorter skirt, so there you go.

    I was obsessed with ebola, to the extent that I could not get it out of my head and went really weird when others said the word, but I used the information that I gathered, to help others to not panic. Now, though, I can barely remember things about it, which tends to happen with short term obsessions.

    Around that time, that my husband suddenly said in frustration: for goodness sake, you have more obsessions than I have hot dinners; get over it girl, what is going on?! And so, aspergers became a new obsession lol

    Because I now am fully aware of them, I can control them a bit better; I can sense when I am going into an obsession and pull back.

    In my 20's, I was obsessed with Princess Dianna and the Victorian era and had not even heard of aspergers.

    When I first came on here, Full Steam, I too was asking questions like yours, because I needed justification for what I believed was "wrong" with me. Less so today, because I know that I do have aspergers.
     
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  6. Clintos

    Clintos Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    My Obsession this week/month is a book called NeuroTribes The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity. I get a delusion that maybe it will help me understand myself, thus, allowing me to become a better person in one way or another.

    My delusion is that I can become a psychologist one day because i've been observing immitating and analyzing people since i was 3 years old.
     
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  7. tmponze

    tmponze New Member

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    I tend to have long standing obsessions along with minor ones every now and then. I've always been obsessed history and the polar regions, but I tend to find some odd thing like ugly fish coming in now and then.

    As far as obessesive behaviors, one of the worst is things being organized in certain ways. My bookshelf has to be organized by subject and subdivisions of subjects. If I get a new book, I have to leave it on the counter until I have time to organize the entire bookcase and fit it in. If different subjects are in physical contact it will upset me all day.

    The other obsession I have is repeating words. I always have a word that I like the sound of and have to fight the urge to say at random throughout the day.
     
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  8. Clintos

    Clintos Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I'm unorganized with my books, I just throw them all around me and in the closest, lol.
     
  9. Diagnosed2015

    Diagnosed2015 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    My "obsessions" can change as quickly as my focus; I'm not sure if it's due to Aspie or ADHD traits. If I'm trying to understand a "how" or "why" issue, I will often not let the matter "drop," unless I can tell I'm being annoying, and then I'll keep wondering about it secretly.

    My 'compulsion' is over-thinking, and I can't focus on a single issue most days. It takes a great deal of concentration to watch a movie and/or follow the plot, especially if something distracts me. For instance, watching a series of movies I usually don't watch, I have to "remove" the creatures and special effects and concentrate deeply on the plot (and usually don't find the movie as funny or great or deep as others who are watching).

    If I see something that intrigues me, I'll start researching it. If I find a new way to clean something (I'm not compulsively neat or cleaning), I might do it because I find it "fun," for a while, until I mention or see something else. I know I'm distracted by sirens and lights, but instead of following firetrucks (which I did when I was a reporter), I'll just look out the window and "want" to go, but I don't.

    I can switch obsessions quickly; when I get bored with them (or sometimes I just forget about them). Other things might come to mind when I watch someone else becomes inpatient or obsessive over something. I'll either tell myself that I'd find something else to do, or I'll start wondering why I'm thinking about it at all, since it's someone else's issue.

    Sorry for the ramble; that's Aspie & ADHD traits :)
     
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  10. NickG

    NickG New Member

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    I do go through obsessions and they can last quite a long time and then I'll quite quickly snap out of them and pick up something new. For a long time it was photography, it was more then a hobby it was an obsession, knowing all the details, taking many copies to cover all eventualities, editing to precision, filing things in particular ways, saving two copies of everything. Then I moved onto philosophy, my most recent one is cooking, I plan a menu a month ahead with a new recipe for every day that I have never tried before. I get obsessions with magazines, blogs, books, order all the ingredients two weeks in advance, count and measure and separate everything. I have a list of every recipe I had on which night since October 2014. I can't make the same recipe more than once. It's hard work now I'm working, but I used to be able to manage it :( This is the first time I've held down a job and it's getting out of control :(

    It's actually causing a problem as I have to go to my mum's for Xmas and I wont eat what she cooks (except on Xmas Day, and then I only eat particular bits), so I'm trying to do a menu - but I don't want to choose a new recipe in case it doesn't work out right (they often don't), but at the same time I don't want to make something again because I've already done it. Holidays are always stressful as it all seem like such hard work :(
     
  11. Diagnosed2015

    Diagnosed2015 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    You might be dealing with OCD re: over-thinking. I deal with OCD, ADHD, and other issues, so I have hundreds of thoughts (similar to yours) racing through my head at any given time.

    I will keep all documentation for at least 7 years, and have to go through a "purging" of files each year -- as I destroy them. I keep backups of all files on my computer(s), until they are so obsolete they can't be used. I've been called a "virtual hoarder" because I keep orders and confirmations of anything I purchase, even if it's a pizza delivery.

    I was "challenged" to cook something (for a pot luck dinner) that "didn't come out of a box," because I claimed I only ate food I could microwave or eat out of a can or box. I obsessed for weeks, asking opinions, looking for recipes. Each recipe called for something in a package, can, or box (such as evaporated milk or a packet of gelatine, etc.), but to me, that still required "boxed" food.

    I finally decided on meatloaf stuffed with spinach and feta (which was a huge hit at the dinner), but then everyone started giving me suggestions of "no box" food, which could have been: "A PB&J Sandwich" (to me, it was in jars or boxes), Spaghetti and meatballs (again, to me, no box), Scrambled Eggs (box/carton), Popcorn (made the old fashioned way), etc.

    I clearly obsessed and over-thought, because it was a "task" to figure out. As soon as it wasn't a challenge, I had no problem coming up with "I could have done...."
     
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  12. jayraytee

    jayraytee Well-Known Member

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    In grade school I obsessed over finding fossils, spent hours upon hours in creek beds picking through pebbles. Even did the same thing on the play ground because it was covered in pea gravel.
    Then I switched to drawing animals, until felt I had conquered that to my own satisfaction, then I switched to drawing people until I was satisfied with my work.
    Then I switched to computers/programming.
    Then I switched to obsessing over a couple of music groups, collecting everything I could find about them.
    Then I switched to genealogy which I continue to obsess over because it is a puzzle that can never be finished. It continues to peak my interest and yet I am always happy when I break through a barrier or find new data.

    I typically stay focused on one thing for long periods of time, sometimes years, but I can switch when I feel the puzzle lacks a challenge or has been solved.
     
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  13. texkag

    texkag New Member

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    I have developed a handful of obsessions over the years that I have cyclically switched between. One is always dominant but others are a matter of need. I am a full time carer for my wife and have obsessed over her condition at times for example, or over the care system etc.

    This is one thing that is not explained clearly in the autistic literature. I was under the impression that obsessions were fixed for years and so doubted that I had Asperger's for many years.

    I have discovered, however, that I need one overarching obsession to turn to when I'm depressed and stressed. I have a constitutional craving to go deep into an interest, to really get lost in it. Without this, I don't think I would cope. I would crash.
     
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  14. Clintos

    Clintos Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I use to draw ninja's chopping the head off of other people in fine graphic detail and then got kicked out of school at a young age of 5.
     
  15. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member

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    Why do you consider that a delusion rather than a goal?
     
  16. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member

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    I may have been wrong about all my obsessions being short term,.

    reading through all your experiences I realised that I was utterly obsessed with motorcycles for about 15 years. I just thought I was really into bikes, but I guess I always knew that "really into" was much deeper than most.

    I've not had a bike for 6 years now and not likely to in the near future as I have 3 young kids, but it's only this last month I started selling my bike gear.

    Which took up a whole wardrobe.
    And which I brought with me from the UK when I move to Australia 6 years ago.

    My party strategy was always to find another biker and talk about bikes all night, which is usually possible.

    I've also been into computers and in particular the internet for about 32 years. I think that may count too, but it's hard to say as it's my job too.


    I've got to say I'm finding reading all your threads and posts far more helpful right now than the "authority" sites I started with. I'm still getting an "AHA that's why you did/do this" every day at the moment.
     
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  17. kris

    kris Well-Known Member

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    I've been really into sewing since I was 8 or 9. That Hasn't ever changed and is now my day job. But other obsessions (some of them have been pretty expensive) come and go pretty quickly for no apparent reason.
     
  18. WereBear

    WereBear License to Weird V.I.P Member

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    When I am interested in something, I research the behind off of it. The Web has only made this more gratifying :)

    Cats, nutrition and health, polar exploration, psychology; these have been steady for the last 16 years, some for far longer.
     
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  19. Clintos

    Clintos Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Thats a good question, the more I read the more I seem to comprehend and it seems to me more like a goal. Unfortunately my psychiatrist in my head seems to mention that I should not read to much so that I do not burn my self out and that university/college is real hard work. I read between the lines and it's like he is saying it is not possible for a person like me to have a degree. My belief is is I spend the next 10 years reading about autism and psychology that there is no reason why I can not be where I imagine myself should be.
     
  20. invisible

    invisible Active Member

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    I have one or two big ones that I've had pretty much my whole life and then I have small ones that come and go. Those usually last anywhere from a few days to a few months. Sometimes they return after a while.