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Recovery

OCD

90% better from OCD

Now, I consider myself 90 percent better from OCD.

I am 38 years old and have been suffering with OCD for the past 17 years. When I look back in retrospect on my teenage years, I now realize I had small signs of OCD back then. I remember that I was very obsessed with making my homework perfect and doing a whole math project in pencil and then instead of erasing a mistake I would redo the whole assignment. I remember having the fear that I wasn’t perfect and what people would think of me if I made a mistake. Fast forward to 17 years ago because that’s where my OCD really started to get extreme. The event that triggered my OCD was when my father had his heart attack and almost didn’t survive. I was 21 back then. I then began to get the intrusive thoughts that if I didn’t do something my father would die. For example, if I didn’t put the turning signal in when I made a turn I thought something bad would happen to him. If I put the radio on a bad number (which I have issues with numbers) I would think my father would be injured or fall ill. My whole daily life became surrounded by numerous obsessions and compulsions about my father being ok and focusing and doing everything “right” to keep him alive and safe. This went on for 15 years. I would text him repeatedly throughout the day to see if he was ok. I then, for a period of about a year, went to therapy. I was embarrassed to tell anyone that I was seeing a therapist due to my fear of that negative stigma that I’m so called crazy.

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Podcast

Dr Courtney Paré – Homeopathy and OCD

In episode 89 I interviewed Dr Courtney Paré. Courtney is a naturopathic doctor who specialises in the treatment of mental health conditions, with a focus on anxiety and OCD.

Dr. Courtney Paré

In this episode I chat with Courtney about meditation, what is homeopathy, how homeopathy can work alongside SSRIs, how homeopathy is personalised, the importance of therapy, why intrusive thoughts stick around, being mindful, being compassionate with yourself, and 3 homeopathy case studies. Enjoy!


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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Podcast

Jon Hershfield – When a family member has OCD

In episode 88 I interviewed Jon Hershfield. Jon is a pyschotherapist based in Maryland who specialises in the treatment of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. He is the author of three books “The mindfulness workbook for OCD” and “When a family member has OCD”. And the soon to be released “everyday mindfulness for OCD” which he co-wrote with Shala Nicely. This podcast is packed with tips and advice for the family members of those with OCD. 

Jon Hershfield

In this episode I chat with Jon about stigma within the family, the importance of remaining a family member, why it’s not your fault, the 4 I’s, reducing compulsions as a family, why it’s ok to help them relax and comfort them but not engage in the content of their obsessions, establishing contracts for when reducing compulsions, mindfulness and coping with frustration within the family. Enjoy!


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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Podcast

Ryan Dumont – The Missing Peace: A Patient’s Guide to Recovery

This week’s episode is sponsored by CBT Solutions. They are based in Maryland. Find out more here –CBTBaltimore.com

In episode 87 I interviewed Ryan Dumont. Ryan is an OCD wellness advocate, CEO of Dumont Innovative Technologies, and the author of the forthcoming book, “The Missing Peace: A Patient’s Guide to Recovery” that details a holistic, systematic approach to treat OCD. He also works with nOCD, a sponsor of this podcast.

Ryan Dumont

In this episode I had a good chat with Ryan about his OCD story, how helping others can help recovery, advice for getting the most out of being an inpatient, lifestyle changes, the nOCD app, Ryan’s book, the importance of being patient, not letting OCD decide, making note and keeping track of progress. Enjoy!


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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OCD

Learning to give thoughts less attention

To this day I still get Intrusive Thoughts, but I’ve learnt to pay them less attention

We all have them – little explosions in our minds catching us off guard. Thoughts that are out of character, unusual, maybe even a little disturbing, “Where did that come from?” We ask.

Estimates vary, but the average person has between 50,000 and 70,000 thoughts a day. Our minds are complex beasts and it can feel like we’re at the mercy of some of these thoughts. We’re not good at controlling our minds either; a familiar test – for the next minute you’re not allowed to think of a big pink elephant no matter what. Go… Wasn’t easy was it? And that’s what OCD Intrusive Thoughts can be like. When your mind fixates on a thought or a particular idea and just won’t stop going over it. It’s beyond your control. It’s in control of you – at least that’s how it can feel.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder was fairly well portrayed by Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets. His character, Melvin Udall, had to bring his own plastic cutlery to a restaurant because of a fear of germs and has to use a new bar of soap each time he washes his hands. Hand washing, flicking light switches, counting, avoiding cracks in the pavement… These are almost anecdotal ways that OCD presents itself. Certainly not to be downplayed, for sufferers at the mild or extreme end of the spectrum, these obsessions and compulsions can be one of the most horrible experiences to go through. According to the charity OCD UK, the World Health Organisation has listed OCD as one of the top ten most disabling illnesses of any kind, in terms of lost earnings and diminished quality of life.

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Podcast

Sheva Rajaee – OCD and anxiety in the age of information

This week’s episode is sponsored by The Gateway Institute. They have locations in Orange County, San Francisco and Phoenix. Find out more here – GatewayOCD.com 

In episode 86 I interviewed Sheva Rajaee. Sheva is a psychotherapist at the OCD Center of Los Angeles. Sheva specializes in the treatment of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and other related anxiety disorders. Sheva recently did a Ted Talk called “Addicted to the answer – anxiety in the age of information”.

Sheva Rajaee

In this episode I had a great chat with Sheva about many topics. We discussed the importance of giving yourself permission to have what you need, mindfulness, sleep, exercise and alone time. How increased access to information can cause anxiety, going on an information diet and learning to watch emotions until the urge decreases. We also discussed living with uncertainty, turning pain into growth, gratitude practices and dealing with intrusive thoughts. Enjoy!


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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OCD

Embracing Uncertainty in OCD Recovery

A person’s recovery from OCD requires them to let go of the concept of certainty and embrace uncertainty.

My OCD story. I’ve made this post visible to those I feel know me or won’t judge me. I hope my story will educate those who don’t truly understand OCD.

For as long as I can remember I’ve always been a hypersensitive, worrisome and impressionistic person. I experienced my first OCD symptoms at the age of six. I have memories of myself lying in bed with my eyes closed, having unwanted and intrusive thoughts repeat in my mind. Most of these thoughts involved close family members, who I’d visualise as being harmed and tortured. This made me feel extremely upset, frightened, guilty and helpless.

At the age of ten I began engaging in a bizarre compulsion, one which had me spitting saliva everywhere I’d go. I’d spit mostly on my clothes and the floor, and this would be accompanied at times with a strange swallowing compulsion which I still carry to this day. A lot of my thoughts were still centred on harm and a feeling of entrapment, both of which made me believe I was evil and deserving of some sort of punishment. I felt that If I was to swallow my saliva something bad would happen to me or my family so I tried my hardest not to do this.

I had also become fixated on the number ‘four’. Everything I did was in fours and even to this day I still engage in this ‘four’ compulsion, although I try really hard not to. Some nights I would be doing actions such as turning off the light switch four times, over and over again until I felt I had got it right. It wasn’t a matter of just making sure I had done it four times, I also had to place my hand on the switch in a correct manner, with four fingers on the panel, upright and not downright. Even if I had made the slightest mistake in my hand placements I’d have to start over. This would last at least thirty minutes on average before I felt comfortable enough to move onto another action that requires the same ‘four’ compulsion to get me through my day.

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Podcast

Beyond the doubt course – Jeff Bell and Shala Nicely

Get 25% off Jeff and Shala’s course exclusive for The OCD Stories listeners: Find out more >> 

In episode 85 I interviewed Jeff Bell and Shala nicely about their online course Thriving with OCD: four keys out when locked in doubt.

Beyond The Doubt

I enjoyed my chat with Jeff and Shala as always. We talk about navigating life with OCD, the art of making belief, their triple A attitude: appreciaton, authenticity and abundance. We talked about mindset, being driven by purpose and service, and how surrendering can help in recovery. Enjoy!


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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Podcast

CHRISSIE HODGES – PURE O (PART 2)

In episode 84 I interviewed Chrissie Hodges as a part two. You can find part one of the interview here – Chrissie Hodges Pure O (Part One). Chrissie is a Mental Health Advocate & Public Speaker, Peer Support Coach, Author of ‘Pure OCD: The Invisible Side of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder’. Chrissie was awarded the Hero award at the 24th IOCDF conference in San Fran and is a global ambassador for the Shaw Mind Foundation.

Chrissie Hodges

I had another fun and insightful chat with Chrissie. We discussed many topics including dealing with anger, dealing with people who say “I’m so OCD”, not taking on other peoples thoughts and self care. We also talked about peer support, processing guilt, speaking out about your theme, visualisation, finding what you enjoy, finding out who you are, medical and emotional recovery. Enjoy!

Recovery is fluid, recovery is possible” – Chrissie Hodges


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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Podcast

Chrissie Hodges – Pure O (Part 1)

Ep83 is sponsored by theocdclinics.com (Locations: Dallas Fort Worth, Houston, San Antonio/Austin metro areas)

In episode 83 I interviewed Chrissie Hodges. Chrissie is a Mental Health Advocate & Public Speaker, Peer Support Coach, Author of ‘Pure OCD: The Invisible Side of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder’. Chrissie was awarded the Hero award at the 24th IOCDF conference in San Fran and is a global ambassador for the Shaw Mind Foundation.

Chrissie Hodges

I had a fun and insightful chat with Chrissie. We covered topics such as dealing with personal stigma, Pure O, talking about sexual and violent intrusive thoughts, depression, supports in recovery: exercise, talking with peers and self awareness, using the term Pure O, dealing with an identity crisis, being able to forgive yourself – it’s not your fault, memories, suffering is suffering, and being kind to yourself. Enjoy!


podcast

To listen on iTunes click the button, or go to iTunes and search “The OCD Stories“. If you enjoy the podcast please subscribe and leave a review. It helps us reach more people who need to hear these remarkable stories of recovery!

You can also listen on Android and over devices through most podcast apps, such as Stitcher.

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