Living with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and having to deal with your fearful thoughts can be extremely difficult. It can be tough for people with OCD to have to experience obsessive thoughts that are intrusive, scary, and difficult to manage. As a result, here is a short list of techniques that a person can use to help manage their OCD and their obsessive thoughts.
The first thing a person must do is not to dwell or focus on the fear provoking thought when it comes. The more a person tries to reason out the thought or focus on the fear behind the thought, the stronger the thought becomes. The next time you encounter an obsessive thought, get into the practice of not dwelling on it.
From my interviews with various psychologists, I was told that a person should visualize a red stop sign in their mind when they encounter a fear provoking thought. When the negative thought comes, a person should think of a red stop sign which serves as a reminder to stop focusing on that thought and to think of something else. A person can then try to think of something positive to replace the negative thought.
A person should keep a small notebook of positive statements that makes them feel good. Whenever they come across a positive and uplifting verse that makes them feel good, write it down in a small notebook. A person can then carry this notebook around in their pocket and whenever they feel anxious, they can read their notebook.
Sometimes, a person may encounter a lot of scary thoughts coming at them all at once. Instead of getting upset, remember that these thoughts are exaggerated and are not based on reality. From my interviews with various professionals, I’ve learned that usually it is the fear behind the thoughts that gets us worked up. Ignore the fear behind these obsessive thoughts, regardless how the strong the fear may be. If you ignore the fear behind these thoughts, then the thoughts become easier to manage.
Another thing to remember is that no one can predict the future with 100 Percent certainty. Even if your fearful thoughts tell you otherwise, the fact is that there are circumstances and factors in every situation that can not be anticipated. We may be ninety-nine percent in predicting the future but all it takes is for that one percent to make the biggest difference.
Although I am a Layman and not a professional, I have interviewed many counselors and I learned that there are many ways to deal with these kinds of thoughts. It is also important to seek professional help if you have OCD. There are ways to deal with your obsessive thoughts and with the proper treatment, people with OCD can live a productive life.
Stan Popovich is the author of “A Layman's Guide to Managing Fear" an easy to read book that presents a overview of techniques that are effective in managing persistent fears and anxieties. For additional information go to: http://www.managingfear.com