27 July 2014 - 16:21
I've posted this in this forum as I know that many are struggling with their intrusive thoughts and wanted to share what I've learnt.
Trying to work out why we are getting the thoughts won't help only make the OCD. But basically OCD tends to pick on our worst fears and the more that we try to analyse them or the reason for having them the worse the OCD becomes because we are giving the thoughts importance.
What does giving thoughts important mean? As soon as we react to a thought, whether it’s ruminating about it, analysing it or performing any other compulsions we are giving it importance.
The average human has more than 70,000 thoughts a day, most of them pass unnoticed but of those that we do notice it’s because we’ve deemed them to be important enough to deal with. And in the case of OCD we give importance to things that really aren't important or an actual danger by saying to ourselves 'What if...?' when what we should be saying is 'So what'.
So every time that we recall or analyse that situation we are giving it importance, but if when we get those thoughts we don’t react to them by performing any compulsions then the thought gradually loses it’s importance and stops coming to our attention.
OCD isn’t rational and therefore trying to rationalise a situation doesn’t work instead it ends up causing more doubt and anxiety. Instead of trying to rationalise we need to just acknowledge the thought and let it pass without reacting to it by performing any compulsions and that includes over analysing, ruminating and rationalising, because as soon as we perform any compulsions we are giving the thought importance. That is to say that because we’ve reacted to it we assume that it must mean that the thought is important enough to need dealing with which just isn’t true.
It’s not our thoughts that are the problem it’s the way that we react to them and the meaning that we attach to them that causes the problems. So in order to deal with our OCD we need to learn to change the way that we react/overreact to our thoughts.
They are simply thoughts, not even OCD thoughts or bad thoughts just thoughts, so try not to attach any meaning to them.
I hope that this helps those of you who are struggling at the moment with your intrusive thoughts