BRAIN FOOD: Are you suffering from ... Anal retention

BRAIN FOOD: Are you suffering from ... Anal retention - We all know Freud was obsessed with toilet training. One theory was that children who did not master the art of elimination got, well, constipated. This turned a normal child into an obsessive and tidy adult preoccupied with petty details. Every office has an anal retentive. They're the one with the matching sharpened pencils lined up on their desk and the iron in their briefcase. They spellcheck e-mails in their Inbox, pick the lint off their airplane seat and go through everyone's expenses with a calculator. At home, anal retentives organise soup cans alphabetically and label drawers. They may be constipated socially as well - ie, they're not exactly a barrel of laughs. Certain drugs can loosen them up, as can cognitive behavioural therapy, but no-one wants an anal expulsive accountant.

by HELEN KIRWAN-TAYLOR - helen@kirwantaylor.demon.co.uk
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

We all know Freud was obsessed with toilet training. One theory was that children who did not master the art of elimination got, well, constipated. This turned a normal child into an obsessive and tidy adult preoccupied with petty details. Every office has an anal retentive. They're the one with the matching sharpened pencils lined up on their desk and the iron in their briefcase. They spellcheck e-mails in their Inbox, pick the lint off their airplane seat and go through everyone's expenses with a calculator. At home, anal retentives organise soup cans alphabetically and label drawers. They may be constipated socially as well - ie, they're not exactly a barrel of laughs. Certain drugs can loosen them up, as can cognitive behavioural therapy, but no-one wants an anal expulsive accountant.

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