Living with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) can be a crippling condition…trust me, I know.

Having been diagnosed with Co-Morbid OCD, I have suffered with the condition for approximately 20 years. I have been through some pretty difficult times with it.

Don’t let it control you

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I think the worst part of the condition is the grip that it has over you to complete rituals, no matter how small, which you know in your mind are logically not right but the compulsion to do them just becomes too strong.

You cave quicker than a wet paper bag, and complete the ritual, leaving you feeling that you are a prisoner to the condition.

Over the past 20 years I have learned some tips to be able to manage my OCD.

Management of this condition can have a massive impact on the value of your life. So here goes…

Acceptance

I know you know you have OCD – you would not be reading this article right?

But are you ready to tackle it? To effectively manage it?

You see there is a difference in being aware of your condition and wanting to take action. Chances are if this is something that has got a grip on you, there is going to be a certain level of fear when it comes to looking at breaking free.

Entering the unknown and having faith that if you don’t complete a ritual that the world is not going to crumble.

Be mindful

So if you have decided to take action and that you no longer want your OCD to take over your life then this is the next step.

There maybe some rituals that you are doing yourself that you don’t even know about!

managing ocd_4Take a seat for a day or two and just observe what your actions are. Write them down. Don’t take any action at this point, just view from afar.

You can even ask some of your friends and family (if you feel comfortable) to also give their input as to what they may have noticed.

Stop and listen

You now have your list of rituals you do – perhaps it is a small list, perhaps it is a lengthy one.

There will be a few on there that really bug you and want to stop.

So next time you catch yourself doing a mindless ritual, stop for a moment and just resist the urge – play a game with yourself. I used to do this when it came to washing my hands; I would resist the urge and play a game with myself, almost dare myself not to wash them.

Sit with the feeling and question it. Get into your logical head and almost have a conversation or interview with yourself about it.

Remember that you are in charge.

Ask yourself at this point, what is the worst thing that is going to happen if you don’t carry out your ritual?

Stress management

You may be well on your way to controlling your ritual urges but there will be one time when things get too much, perhaps a stressful situation will arise and hey presto you find yourself getting “back into old habits”.

This is the moment when you need to remain calm and reassure yourself you are not going backwards.  

Stress, or being overwhelmed is a sure fire way to bring back your urges to complete rituals. Things will improve when you ultimately feel safe and that the world is okay at this point. Take a deep breath and relax.

Now this is not going to happen overnight. Practice these tips and have faith in yourself that you can manage your OCD. Managing OCD is the toughest part but it can be done….trust me!

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