Living with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is like waiting for your worst fear to come true while doing anything to try and prevent it from happening. Imagine Your worst fear. Now imagine what you’d do to prevent that from happening.
I did the following activity at the International OCD Foundation Conference in 2018 to illustrate how OCD takes over the mind. Give it a try:
Set a timer for 1 minute and list as many offensive words as possible. Say out loud what words you wrote down.
What did you notice about your experience? When I did this activity, I looked around to see if anyone else was looking at me, thinking they somehow knew what I had written down. I did not volunteer to share what words were in front of me and I couldn’t wait to get rid of the paper!
What happened to you?
I was in control of what I wrote down and in control of my own participation in the activity. I did not like writing offensive words and I certainly did not say them out loud! As soon as I could, I tore up the paper and threw it out.
People with OCD cannot control their intrusive thoughts, often do not share them with the people they love.
Try this activity. It’s a compassion builder. How long can you go without ripping up your paper?
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