We are all well-aware of the multiple mental health disorders due to this current time being more open about voicing important topics like this. We have usually encountered the mental health problems such as ADHD, depression, anxiety, and in this topic, OCD. Obsessive-compulsive disorder or shortly known as OCD is a kind of mental health disorder wherein a person experiences repetitive unwanted thoughts, or any kind of ideas that triggers the person to commit something compulsive. Some examples of these compulsive behaviors are cleaning, washing, and other things or tasks that interfere with a person’s daily routines or other social interactions.
Diagnosing a person with obsessive compulsive disorder must require a presence of the compulsions that requires consuming time and daily disruptions of the person’s daily life, as well as massively impairing the person’s ability or chance to social interact with their peers. According to some researches, it was stated that OCD affects about 2-3% of the people in the United States of America, and among those adults of the percentage, it is mostly women who are more affected than men. Usually, OCD usually starts at the early stages of childhood, adolescence, then in early adulthood. Averagely, the symptoms of OCD are usually visible at the age of 19 years old.
- 1 How can a Person with OCD Help Themselves?
- 1.1 Be prepared.
- 1.2 Accept risks willingly.
- 1.3 Ironically, do not reassure yourself nor ask for reassurance from the others.
- 1.4 Try not to analyze your obsessive thoughts.
- 1.5 Do not waste your time with preventing or disregarding your thoughts.
- 1.6 Do not be an all or nothing thinker or someone who thinks in black and white.
- 1.7 You should always remember that your OCD is your responsibility.
- 1.8 Do not be impatient and try not to compare yourself with other people’s progress.
- 1.9 When you feel any obsessive thoughts triggering you, never run away from your anxiety.
- 1.10 Always choose the harder option.
- 1.11 Always review your therapy assignments.
- 1.12 If your therapist has given you a new assignment but you do not feel like doing it, consult them about it.
- 1.13 Start with your OCD therapy assignments immediately.
- 1.14 Do not get overwhelmed with perfectionism.
- 1.15 Make yourself be familiar with your OCD therapy assignments at the start of every day.
- 1.16 When faced with a difficult task always try to be optimistic about it.
- 1.17 Do not rush your OCD therapy assignment in order to not feel any anxiety.
- 1.18 Tell your therapist if your OCD therapy assignments are not giving you anxiety.
How can a Person with OCD Help Themselves?
OCDs might remain for the rest of a person’s life and will continue to interfere with daily life from time to time which leaves the person feeling helpless. But we must know that the mind is powerful and I think we are powerful enough to manage these disorders and keep them at bay.
In this segment, you will know some advices that could help you with managing your compulsions and obsessions. You must remember that in reading the following advices, consider the fact that every person is different and some advices might work differently for them. Some might work for you and not for them, or some might work for them and not for you.
Obsessions and compulsions do not choose a specific time or place to interfere with your routines again. Do not be shocked or be rattled when your old compulsions or perhaps new ones will suddenly attack. Do not let it throw your day off course. Always be prepared to use therapies or remedies that would work for you. If new compulsions or obsessions disrupts you, make sure to inform your psychiatrist or therapist about it to get immediate help or advice.
Accept risks willingly.
Risking will always be a part of life and there are some risks that are permanent. Which is why you should willingly learn how to accept the risks of your OCD that it might not be healed after all.
Ironically, do not reassure yourself nor ask for reassurance from the others.
Instead of constantly trying to comfort yourself that everything will be alright, you should always think or tell yourself that the worst has already occurred. Constantly reassuring yourself will only put your therapy homework useless and will prevent your improvement. Constantly seeking for reassurance is a actually a form of compulsion despite your constant justifications.
Try not to analyze your obsessive thoughts.
One of the biggest mistakes that a person who has OCD is when they contradict their thoughts. Do not analyze nor argue with your obsessive thoughts.
Do not waste your time with preventing or disregarding your thoughts.
Instead of gaining the positive effect when you try to not think about your thoughts, it will only give you so much stress instead. This is why you should think about your compulsive thoughts even more. It may seem difficult and it will only cause too much distress, but the more you think about your thoughts, the lesser you will think about it in the future.
Do not be an all or nothing thinker or someone who thinks in black and white.
Do not be overly critical about yourself. For example, do not think about one slip up or obstacle immediately means that you are a complete failure. Just simply try not to let one slip up overwhelm you so much and remind yourself that you can always try again.
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You should always remember that your OCD is your responsibility.
Do not try to involve other people with trying to therapize you with your OCD unless your therapist prescribes you to. The people you try to involve to comfort or motivate you will not be always there unlike you, you will always be there at the end of the day.
Do not be impatient and try not to compare yourself with other people’s progress.
Always remember that every person has their own pace in their life or whatever journey they are currently in. Just try to focus on your own development and never compare yourself to the other because it will only give you more pressure instead of helping you heal on your own pace.
When you feel any obsessive thoughts triggering you, never run away from your anxiety.
The only way to overcome the fear and be able to see what is beyond it is by facing fear itself. Running away from your thoughts will only make them catch up to you even more. Regardless how scary it may seem always try to face it and overcome it.
Always choose the harder option.
When you are given the options when it comes to alleviating your compulsive thoughts, always choose the harder option. This means that you must always choose the confronting option. Once again, always take note that confronting or facing your compulsive thoughts not running away from it.
Always review your therapy assignments.
Even if you already know the ropes around your OCD therapy, you still must learn how to assess yourself with the help of your assignments by reviewing them. You may think that you have already mastered them but nevertheless, do not overlook them and always try to review yourself to get better results.
If your therapist has given you a new assignment but you do not feel like doing it, consult them about it.
As a patient, you are given the right to always speak freely about what you are going through and you have the right regarding your own therapy. The purpose of OCD therapy assignments is to train patients with enduring anxiety.
Start with your OCD therapy assignments immediately.
Do not wait until you are ready. Procrastination is the greatest feature of a person with OCD. So, this is a sign for you to get up and do your homework because the perfect moment of doing them is when you start doing them.
Do not get overwhelmed with perfectionism.
Being a perfectionist is also another feature of a person with OCD. There will be times when you find yourself thinking that if you do not do your homework immediately, you will never recover from your OCD. Always remember that you should not force yourself to do tasks or your homework if you are still not feeling it. There will be also another possible thing that could occur is when you start thinking that you should do your homework perfectly. Instead of recovering from your OCD, you are actually just putting yourself more into more compulsive thoughts. This is why you must remember to take it easy, do not pressure yourself, and allow yourself to be human.
Make yourself be familiar with your OCD therapy assignments at the start of every day.
You may have been in this OCD therapy assignment for a long period of time, that still does not mean that you should not let yourself be familiarized with the content of your assignments. With the help of familiarization, you are slowly exposing yourself to an anxiety-inducing stimuli and will gradually help you with building your tolerance to the anxiety being triggered.
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When faced with a difficult task always try to be optimistic about it.
Difficult things happen all the time and it is up to us with how we should face it. Instead of overthinking about how this difficult task or assignment would only make you feel more stressed and will only make your condition worse, think of it as like a new opportunity that will help you get better and you are just simply levelling up from your previous assignments. These difficult circumstances in life will train you to be better and be stronger.
Do not rush your OCD therapy assignment in order to not feel any anxiety.
When doing your OCD therapy assignment, you should always remember to take your time and not rush yourself. Rushing yourself when doing your assignment will not give you a chance to review it and will not feel the effects of it. Getting over your anxiety or the task that is inducing it is not the goal because OCD therapy assignments is meant to raise a moderate level of anxiety and retaining it.
Tell your therapist if your OCD therapy assignments are not giving you anxiety.
Since the goal of OCD therapy is to induce anxiety and train the patient to be strong enough to tolerate it, you must always assess how you are feeling when doing your assignments. If you do not feel any anxiety, consult your therapist about it to fix the issue.
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