It has occurred to me that having obsessive compulsive disorder or OCD can possibly lead one to being self-centered. Because I have this disorder I sometimes find myself thinking that it has lead me to be self-centered insomuch that too often I focus on myself.
When other people mention their physical or mental problems I sometimes act with surprise because I realize that other people also have problems. I am not the only one with a problem. This may seem like an obvious conclusion, but to me it is not obvious because I am too busy thinking about my OCD. I sympathize with the struggles of others, but nevertheless I can be somewhat surprised by them.
This is what having OCD can do to you. You can become very wrapped up in yourself and your own little world. This is not a healthy thing to do, but I believe that the disorder makes you do it. It is the nature of the beast.
In order to overcome that egocentric state of mind I have to make an attempt to try to realize that everyone struggles with something, and that my efforts to show empathy have to increase. I think I was more empathetic when I didn't have OCD. The nature of the disorder definitely makes you think more about yourself.
After all, you are obsessing (hence the name, obsessive compulsive disorder.) As a matter of fact it would be a good idea to reach out more to those with physical or mental problems as a means of therapy. It is not only a good strategy, but you can help someone in the process. I don't think it is self-serving, or that it constitutes a hidden agenda.
It is important not to become so focused on yourself that you lose sight of those who could use your help. Those who suffer from certain mental disorders, which by their very nature make you more self-centered, may have some extra hurdles to overcome, but the act of reaching out is definitely worthwhile.