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Changes to the website

Hi everyone, just to let you know – we are making some exciting changes to the website. Most of the stuff is happening at the backend so hopefully this will not affect browsing. 1) Migrated the blog from wordpress.com. – no more intrusive ads and more functionality on the way. 2) Installed an amazing blog theme – we are still tweaking …

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Open question/suggestions

Hi everyone, It has been a while since I last posted here. As always I try not to overload this blog with information and I rather focus on quality rather than quantity. As a move towards quality, I am trying to assess potential interest from people in relation to an online course/toolbox for dealing with rOCD. As I understand it, …

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Book available for purchase on iTunes

Hi everyone, Good news. After a long review process by Apple staff the book is now available on iTunes. Here is the link. https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/love-you-love-you-not/id803442922?ls=1&mt=11 What is the difference between the blog and the book? The book is written with a start, middle and an end in mind. It explains a process. Some of the content from the blog has been …

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Happy 2014 – and other news.

  Happy New Year everyone! Hope everyone is doing OK and looking forward to 2014. I have great news in regards to the blog and book. The book is in its last stages and it will be available through iTunes very soon. The book is called “Love you, Love you not: breaking free from relationship OCD”. If there is enough …

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Introductions

Hi everyone, It has been a busy couple of weeks but I am now back writing some posts. I have noticed that many more people have joined the blog subscription roll since I moved it to a .com domain. And many more people are e-mailing me asking similar questions. I will always reply to any emails, even though it might …

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May Update

  Hi everyone! As you might have seen by now, the face of the blog has changed. I am trying to follow up on some requests from people that have been emailing me about the structure of the blog and other add-0ns that might help people to better navigate the blog.Some changes: -I  have bought the domain relationshipocd.com for a …

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Update

  Hi everyone, This is just a quick update to all of those  people that subscribed to this blog. 1) As you have noticed, there have been some changes to the blog’s theme. The reason for this is that I had an email from one of you mentioning that the posts are hard to navigate. I am trying something different …

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2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.   Here’s an excerpt: 4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 13,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 3 Film Festivals Click here to see the complete report.

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The antidote

Hi everyone Not sure if I covered this or not previously but here it goes! A lot of the time when we start our recovery journey we tend to focus on the outcome rather than the process. What do I mean by this? I mean that we set goals such as “I will eliminate OCD from my life” or “by …

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Just one piece of advice

Hi everyone, I know that I have not been posting often and this has been a deliberate decision on my part. But I have not stopped blogging. With limited time on my part, I try to reply to as many emails as I can instead. People around the world email me and I have at least one or two new …

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Feeling sorry for ourselves

I could just not share this today, as I believe that there are at least 3-4 principles in this video that relate to rOCD. Thank you to one of the people that emailed me and typed rOCD and not Rocd or ROCD, in their message. The first form is the correct one. There is no magic bullet for rOCD. It …

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Weekly Challenge No.1

Here is this week’s challenge for everyone. Do this properly for a week and you will see improvement in your ROCD. Please post comments below relating to any experiences or difficulties you have with this during the week. DO NOT ENGAGE YOUR ROCD THOUGHTS. DO NOT PUSH THEM AWAY EITHER. LET THEM BE. BE GENTLE WITH YOURSELF.

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Tip #5 Slooooow Down

ROCD fuels anxiety and anxiety fuels ROCD. And all these are fuelled by OVER-THINKING. I wrote a bit about this in my brain shovel post (tip #3) In order to get better from ROCD and anxiety, we need to recognize when we are over-thinking things too much…and need to SLOW DOWN. Imagine this: Your brain keeps spinning trying to find …

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A success story

Hi again, I am catching up on my emails and here is a shortened success story from a rOCD sufferer. I really like two things about this story (but there are many more!): 1 – The analogy used that when we love something (or someone) that does not mean that we should be thinking about it all the time. 2- …

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A guest post from Holland

Hi everyone,   Lately I have been getting many emails from people wanting to share what has worked for them in regards to improving their rOCD. It is really interesting to get someone else’s perspective other than mine, as it might resonate with other people better. So here it is!   On choosing acceptance  My name is Jel, I am …

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Another guest post :)

Hi everyone, just wanted to share another post from another rOCD sufferer on how they are moving forward with their rOCD. This for me was a very good point: “I wanted to show others out there that regardless of your sexual orientation ROCD does not discriminate.” It is a very good example that OCD is very much an internal process …

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Another good guest post.

Hi everyone, here is another guest post. From time to time, I am privileged to be emailed these inspirational stories of people that would like to share their journey with others. I have underlined and bolded some elements that really stood out whilst I was reading it. Thanks for sharing CG. “I have been suffering from OCD all my life, …

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Hollywood syndrome

  Hi everyone, I have slowly started the book on rOCD and am still corresponding with some rOCD sufferers. I had a very interesting discussion with one of them. I will call this person P. I have asked P to write a list of (misplaced) expectations in regards to her relationship and send it to me. She also kindly agreed …

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Guest post 2

  Hi everyone, Recently, I received an update from someone that I had started helping out a few months back asked her to share her improvement story on this blog. This is not a testimonial to my counselling skills by any means but a testimonial to her perseverance, patience, positive thinking and effort. There is no magic trick here. Here …

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Another post from another rOCD sufferer

Hi everyone. I would like to share an inspiring story from another rOCD sufferer. Her name is Natalie. Natalie’s story was much longer than this and had to be edited to fit the short action format of this blog. I left in the bits that I thought would be useful for other sufferers as positive action points. You will realise …

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Be more optimistic (Guest post)

*This was not written by me. This is a guest post.* Hi, my name is Brandon and I have been suffering from ROCD for just over a year now. I have been with my amazing partner for a year and two months, but unfortunately most of this time has been spent on worrying about my relationship. Sure, ROCD is hell, …

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Negative behaviour #2

  First of all, I would like to congratulate all of those who have made some improvement in regards to their rOCD. I have been getting a lot of e-mails lately about people that apply some of the principles in this blog and to a lesser or bigger extent have moved a little bit forward. This motivates me to keep …

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Roller coaster ride and chronic disease

  OK.I had promised myself and everyone else not to write anymore posts. I guess I will have to take that back as some people have asked me to write about specific topics and I see a need of writing a few more because of some of the feedback and observations of lately. I will start with this one today. …

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Tip #31 3 Mistakes to avoid on the recovery road

So I have more than 30 posts here (did not think that I would get that far!) and I am thinking now if people are really benefiting from these tips. I thought that if you give people the tools, they would be able to “fix” the problem. Maybe it was bit naive of me because they still need to learn …

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Tip #30 Psychological resilience

At the height of my ROCD anxieties, I stumbled upon mindfulness and decided to take a free course at University.  Before I could go on the course, I had to have an interview with the therapist in order to see if the course would be suited for me and most importantly if I was ready for the course. A lot …

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Just one piece of advice

Hi everyone, I know that I have not been posting often and this has been a deliberate decision on my part. But I have not stopped blogging. With limited time on my part, I try to reply to as many emails as I can instead. People around the world email me and I have at least one or two new …

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Revisiting OCD

So that everyone knows that what I have been writing here is not complete nonsense , I decided to steal some paragraphs from PsychCentral – as always I do not advocate spending  a lot of time going from blog to blog and spending a lot of time reading other people’s experiences or discussing your own. The bottom line is that for …

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Tip #16 How can mindfulness help?

There are different ways of defining mindfulness and mindfulness practice. I like to think about mindfulness as a tool that help us realise that our bodies and minds are entities of their own and that we are not at fault for most of the things that are going own. For example, if you have a bad thought that does not make you …

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Tip #15 How can ERP help?

ERP stands for exposure and response prevention. It is one of the psychological treatments of choice for Obsessive and Compulsive Disorders. The idea behind it is to decrease your anxiety levels by exposing you to the things that make your anxiety spike. This sort of therapy normally starts by gradual increase of anxiety triggers e.g. start with the things that …

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Tip #14 How can CBT help?

CBT stands for cognitive behavioral therapy and it seems to help sufferers in many types of mental disorders. It can be a complement to medication or stand alone therapy. I will not go into much detail about CBT as there are entire books written about it. I would rather explain how CBT can help people with ROCD. CBT intends to explain the …

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Tip #12 Meds or no Meds

A few weeks ago, I came across a blog advocating the non-use of drugs for mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety. People that wrote this blog were trying to say that pharmaceutical companies do not have the evidence to support drug use in these types of mental diseases and only have interest in their “agenda”. Funny enough, at the end of …

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Accepting OCD

Hi everyone, As always I am trying to cover subjects that I did not think about covering in previous posts. And sometimes the shortest posts are the best Going back a few years, at the height of my OCD problems, one of the hardest things for me was accepting that I had OCD. I went through analysing feelings to point …

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The perfect partner

Hello, Hope everyone is enjoying the summer and doing a bit of mindfulness… I don’t think I have covered the “perfect partner” issue from a rOCD perspective in previous posts so here it goes.It is also important for me to mention that I am not discussing cases of emotional and/or physical abuse. We are excluding these cases from this discussion. …

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Hollywood syndrome

  Hi everyone, I have slowly started the book on rOCD and am still corresponding with some rOCD sufferers. I had a very interesting discussion with one of them. I will call this person P. I have asked P to write a list of (misplaced) expectations in regards to her relationship and send it to me. She also kindly agreed …

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Falling out of love

It has been a very busy two weeks for me. Work and most importantly family life has caught up with me. My wife ended up in Hospital for a week but she is back home now. Both herself and the baby are OK. This time apart made me realise how much I miss her when she is away. This is …

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Tip #28 Chronicles of Narnia

Not sure if you have seen the movies or read the books (I have only watched the movies!) – Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis. He has written many other books, the one that I think applies to ROCD sufferers is called Mere Christianity. Here is what I think is one of the most important lessons from the book (I …

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Tip #2 True Love is a choice

One thing that Hollywood does not teach us is that true love is a choice. Feelings come and go. It is a biological thing. Not a bad thing but we should not expect feelings to be there 24/7. One of my favourite quotes is “Choose your love and love your choice”. Reflect on this statement for a while. We can’t …

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Why rOCD might be harder to treat today

Hello everyone, busy couple of weeks babysitting the little one in the evenings so that my wife can finish off her MSc (Psychology). I have really lucked out as my wife finds time to keep the household running, work on her dissertation and takes care of the toddler during the day. I am still catching up on a backlog of …

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Tip #33 The 2 (or 3) brains

From some emails that I have received, I realised that some of you have been having problems with acceptance and mindfulness – and how to use these to not engage with your thoughts. I think a big part of the struggle is understanding why you should not engage with your thoughts. Once you understand this, I believe that you can …

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Tip #32 The answer is not in your brain but in your ACTIONS.

The picture above is a scan of the brain and it is self-explanatory.Let us look at one example. Imagine you are driving a car and you have one light that comes up on the dashboard. You can quickly understand what is going on and try to solve the problem. Maybe you are low on gas, oil, etc. Now you have …

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Tip #4 Sleight of hand

Well, don’t ever think that you can be smarter than your brain. It will get you in ways that you have never  thought possible before. I had to learn this the hard way with my ROCD. But once I knew how the trick was done I wasn’t fooled again (at least as easily!). See this video and realise how un-awesome …

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Tip #3 The brain shovel

The lesson that I took from my ROCD experience is that I cannot “out-think” my brain. In other words, if my brain has a problem or is imbalanced, any thinking that I do with it has the risk or not being very good. Using the heart as an example, it is like having a heart attack and then trying to run a …

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Tip #1 Know that the brain is an organ

The brain is like any other organ in the body and is responsible for a lot more things than we give it credit for. And sometimes, like the heart, liver and lungs has a problem and does not function properly anymore.  We tend to forget about this in our society and because most of the time we cannot “measure” the …

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The perfect partner

Hello, Hope everyone is enjoying the summer and doing a bit of mindfulness… I don’t think I have covered the “perfect partner” issue from a rOCD perspective in previous posts so here it goes.It is also important for me to mention that I am not discussing cases of emotional and/or physical abuse. We are excluding these cases from this discussion. …

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Some other old notes

Hi everyone, I was doing some Spring cleaning (not Spring yet) and found some old notes from my therapy and mindfulness sessions. They really helped me to understand rOCD and what the first steps are in getting better. Here they are: OCD looks for areas of rigidity, where we are not very flexible in our beliefs and targets them. Short …

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Some old notes

    Hi everyone, It has been really crazy lately. Loads of emails to reply to (I will reply to everyone when possible), busy at home and extremely busy at work.I have been going through some old OCD notes in preparation for the final draft of the rOCD book and found something really good that I just had to share. …

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Can’t shake it…

Hi everyone. I have finally started working on the book. Working and helping taking care of a newborn baby takes a lot of time but it is well worth it! I have picked some emails that I had not yet replied from rOCD sufferers and realised that there was something that I did not cover… “NOT JUST RIGHT EXPERIENCES” in …

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Antibiotics

When doctors treat infections, have you ever considered why in most cases they prescribe a course of antibiotics that could last more than a week? And you have to take them more than 2 or 3 times a day? The simple answer is that in order for the drugs to be effective, they have to reach an x dose for …

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Introductions

Hi everyone, It has been a busy couple of weeks but I am now back writing some posts. I have noticed that many more people have joined the blog subscription roll since I moved it to a .com domain. And many more people are e-mailing me asking similar questions. I will always reply to any emails, even though it might …

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Tip #29 Q&A

Some of you have emailed me asking some very pertinent questions in regards to ROCD. Most of the questions overlapped between individuals. As someone pointed out in a previous post, it could be beneficial to have access to the same “answers”. So here is a general summary or overview of my answers based on my own experience with ROCD: How do I …

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Tip #24 What we should learn through ROCD

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

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Tip #22 Some links worth visiting

This week, I have decided to give everyone a break from this blog and recommend some other links. The first link is related to ROCD research that is going on in the  psychological community. It is about a group based in Israel led by Dr. Doron. They have done extensive research on the causes and mechanics of ROCD. They also …

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Tip #13 Lies and more rOCD lies

A ROCD brain is like Pinocchio. It likes to tell a lie here and then by sending false messages. The only difference is that it has no nose to grow and thus making it very difficult to spot the lies. Sometimes, we can see a nose growing when our anxiety increases… Some of the ROCD brain’s favourite lies are: “If I am …

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Tip #7 Where are you now?

A big part of getting better from ROCD is making a plan on how to get better (I will cover this in a later blog!). But before we start this recovery journey, we need to understand where we are. The reason why we need to do this is simple. It will help us decide the next steps to take. Not …

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How to get better from rOCD

“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions”. Dalai Lama I do not like to consider myself cured from rOCD. I prefer to see myself as symptom free most days and that rOCD has helped me develop a healthier relationship with my wife. Going through the rOCD journey has helped me realize that I had a lot …

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Roller coaster ride and chronic disease

  OK.I had promised myself and everyone else not to write anymore posts. I guess I will have to take that back as some people have asked me to write about specific topics and I see a need of writing a few more because of some of the feedback and observations of lately. I will start with this one today. …

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Falling out of love

It has been a very busy two weeks for me. Work and most importantly family life has caught up with me. My wife ended up in Hospital for a week but she is back home now. Both herself and the baby are OK. This time apart made me realise how much I miss her when she is away. This is …

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Tip #9 Misery loves company

One of the most difficult things for people with ROCD is that in most cases they have to battle not only ROCD but anxiety and depression as well. So it is a triple fight. Sometimes even other forms of OCD.And this can be a very hard process. So give yourself a break. The good thing is that by tackling anxiety …

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Tip #8 How long is a piece of string

For those that are not familiar with the expression “How long is a piece of string?” this expression normally implies that the answer is hard to tell, find out or very complex for varied reasons.  For example if someone asks me: “How long will take me to recover from ROCD?” I would have to reply: “How long is a piece …

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Tip #6 Consider your options

When it comes to us, “ROCD people”, we like to dwell on the symptoms of our condition and replay different options and scenarios in our minds. We do this in hopes to find a solution or answer that we never seen before. And this goes on and on and on…… This is not a very good way of moving forward …

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Tip #11 Focus on action not results

One thing that we might not realise is that our focus as ROCD sufferers should shift from results to action. I will explain this further: We have ROCD. We want to be better or get cured from ROCD. It is only natural. But at the same time we are building this expectation into the brain – getting better or getting …

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Tip #10 Tough love

*For the benefit of our non-native English speakers ROCD friends* Tough love is an expression used when someone treats another person harshly or sternly with the intent to help them in the long run. Wikipedia  (Not really the picture but I thought it would be fun to have a play on meanings…). Now for the more “serious” stuff… Ask yourself this question. How …

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Tip #18 Building your own ROCD prison pt.2

In the previous post, I talked about how important it is to understand how our unrealistic expectations affect our ROCD. This post will cover the subject of comparisons in relationships. What do I mean by comparisons? I mean benchmarking your relationship against other relationships. Sometimes in ROCD, we look for clues that our relationship is a “good” relationship and it …

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Tip #17 Building our own ROCD prison

It is said that we are the makers of our own prisons. It could not be more true for people with ROCD. Without knowing we slowly build the walls of our mental prisons by using different “bricks”. I will talk about two particular bricks: unrealistic expectations and comparisons. I am sure there are a lot more but these two seem …

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Tip #21 Take some time off from ROCD

For me, getting better from ROCD means thinking and focusing less and less on our anxiety and discomfort on our daily lives. And slowly enjoying life with our partners more. But in order to do this we need to learn how to take some time off from ROCD.  I will start with bad ways of taking time off. If you …

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Tip #20 The radar

Your brain is always looking for signs danger and possible signs of trouble, ESPECIALLY in people with anxiety and ROCD. Let’s look at this example: You have been in a relationship for some time. ROCD kicks in. Your boyfriend or girlfriend buys you a present. Your anxiety kicks in because this means things are getting serious and you start to …

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Tip #19 The nagging feeling

One of the problems that many people face when dating or are in a relationship is that they are looking for the wrong type of love. The type of love that Hollywood sells. You meet “the ONE” and everything is perfect. You will never have any doubts for one second  and everyone else in the world does not exist. Needless …

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Tip #24 The emperor’s new clothes

 Starving for attention The truth is that with ROCD, the content of the thought does not really matter. IF it wasn’t that particular thought it would be something else to annoy you. The ROCD brain is always looking for something to captivate and hold your attention. And it uses the content of the thought to do that. The brain just …

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Tip #23 The chicken and egg

I can’t think of a better example than the story about the chicken and the egg to describe what goes on with anxiety and ROCD. What comes first? ROCD thoughts or anxiety? If we could go back to the beginning of our personal story maybe we would be able to tell… Anxiety can take many shapes in the body, mind(thoughts) …

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Tip #27 Extinction vs Instinct

OK. Let us start with a question. What is the end goal when treating rOCD? Think about this for 1-2 minutes. I will give my answer at the end of this post but explain the answer first. I would like to share with you today an excerpt from an excellent article from Dr. Steven Phillipson, one of the most knowledge people in …

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Tip #26 Treat the disease not the symptoms

One of my biggest mistakes, when I was going through my ROCD period, was to try and fix the symptoms and not the disease. The issue never was trying to find an answer to a question or questions but rather being able to accept uncertainty and becoming happy with it. The only certainty that exists is the one that we make happen …

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Tip #25 The pink elephant

There is a very interesting exercise that is sometimes played in psychology classes. It goes something like this: Imagine a pink elephant and then Try  not think about the pink elephant for as long as you can… Are you still thinking about the pink elephant or have you managed to erase it from your mind ? You could try this …

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Tip #31 3 Mistakes to avoid on the recovery road

So I have more than 30 posts here (did not think that I would get that far!) and I am thinking now if people are really benefiting from these tips. I thought that if you give people the tools, they would be able to “fix” the problem. Maybe it was bit naive of me because they still need to learn …

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Tip #30 Psychological resilience

At the height of my ROCD anxieties, I stumbled upon mindfulness and decided to take a free course at University.  Before I could go on the course, I had to have an interview with the therapist in order to see if the course would be suited for me and most importantly if I was ready for the course. A lot …

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Tip #28 Chronicles of Narnia

Not sure if you have seen the movies or read the books (I have only watched the movies!) – Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis. He has written many other books, the one that I think applies to ROCD sufferers is called Mere Christianity. Here is what I think is one of the most important lessons from the book (I …

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Tip #32 The answer is not in your brain but in your ACTIONS.

The picture above is a scan of the brain and it is self-explanatory.Let us look at one example. Imagine you are driving a car and you have one light that comes up on the dashboard. You can quickly understand what is going on and try to solve the problem. Maybe you are low on gas, oil, etc. Now you have …

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Revisiting OCD

So that everyone knows that what I have been writing here is not complete nonsense , I decided to steal some paragraphs from PsychCentral – as always I do not advocate spending  a lot of time going from blog to blog and spending a lot of time reading other people’s experiences or discussing your own. The bottom line is that for …

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The wound – Follow up on weekly challenge

I had a great question today about letting thoughts be. Other people have asked me about this before and it is hard to explain this concept without you having it experienced first – alike to an electric shock. So I will do my best with the use of imagery and something that anyone can relate to: You have a wound. …

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