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[Sticky] Self-Help Strategies for Living With OCD  

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PsychNG Services
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01/03/2019 10:42 am  

Although treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) usually entails consulting with a qualified mental health professional, there are a number of OCD self-help strategies that you can start using right now to help cope with your OCD symptoms. 

Get the Facts

Perhaps the most important OCD self-help strategy is to learn as much as you possibly can about your illness. OCD is a chronic illness that requires day-to-day management of symptoms instead of focusing on an ultimate cure. Having a chronic illness requires that you become an expert on your condition and getting informed is the first step. 

Learn to Cope Effectively

If you have OCD, you know that OCD and stressgo together. While there are a number of ways that people choose to cope with stress, not all coping strategies are equally effective in managing OCD and stress. In fact, some coping strategies can do more harm than good. An essential OCD self-help tool is to learn good coping strategies for dealing with stress like getting enough sleep, eating well, exercising, meditation and sticking with your treatment plan.

Get a Handle on Worry

Like stress, OCD and excessive worry often go hand in hand. This worry can focus on the theme of your obsessions, the consequences of your illness or it can relate to everyday matters such as paying bills or performing well at work. Unfortunately, worrying can often consume quite a bit of energy and make it difficult to relax. Learning techniques for coping with worry, such as analyzing the probability of what you're worried about actually happening and deciding how to cope with the worst-case scenario should it happen, is a valuable self-help strategy.

Practice Relaxation Techniques

Given that stress and worry are major triggers of OCD symptoms, one of the best ways to boost your OCD self-help skills is to learn and practice a number of relaxation techniques. Deep breathing, mindfulness meditation, and progressive muscle relaxation can be very effective additions to any OCD self-help strategy.

Get Moving

Most of us are familiar with the many physical benefits of aerobic exercise, including reduced cholesterol levels and lowered risk of heart disease and diabetes. However, there is growing evidence that exercise such as running may be an important OCD self-help strategy for reducing the frequency and intensity of OCD symptoms.

Practice Being Mindful

Originating in eastern spiritual traditions such as Buddhism, mindfulness emphasizes a non-judgmental awareness of bodily sensations, sights, sounds, thoughts, and emotions. There are a couple of ways in which mindfulness can help you cope with OCD. First, being mindful of distressing or disturbing thoughts may act as a form of exposure to feared obsessions, similar to a person who is afraid of dogs spending time with a dog to lessen the fear. Mindfulness may also help you become less invested in your thoughts and help you to realize that a thought is just a collection of words or images and is nothing to fear in itself.

This can help to reduce thought-action fusion, a psychological process that can make OCD symptoms worse.

Explore Alternative Therapies

Alternative medicines such as herbal remedies have been growing in popularity in both Europe and North America. Many people with anxiety disorders such as OCD have tried alternative therapies at one time or another.

This topic was modified 9 months ago by PsychNG Services

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2 weeks ago

PsychNG

Most people who see therapists are not dangerous, violent or even eccentric.

The same way people visit doctors when they aren’t sick — they might want a checkup, test, or advice — therapy is not exclusively for people with diagnosed mental health conditions.

#MentalHealth
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2 weeks ago

PsychNG

It’s okay to say that you’re not okay. Yes, that’s right. Your feelings and emotions are valid.

Thank you @akahnnani for this message.

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4 weeks ago

PsychNG

Most people find super it awkward to talk about #mentalhealth.
.
If someone has a physical illness or breaks an arm, we’ll ask how they’re doing, be supportive; offer to do things for them and give our sympathies. .
When someone has mental health issues, often we shy away and let them “deal with it” on their own, or try rationalise things for them; “you’re fine”, “it’s not as bad as you think”. Imagine saying that to someone with a broken limb or terminal illness! .
Because mental illness is invisible until it is spoken about, and so it far too often stays invisible. But it is REAL. As real as bone-break. .
People may struggle with their mind at some point in life, and if you are thinking you can’t do anything about it, that is FALSE!
.
.
Simply asking someone how they’re feeling or if there’s anything they wanna get off their chest could literally turn their day from miserable to bearable, from lonely to hopeful. .
Hoping that just ONE person will read this and ask someone in their life how they’re doing. And that maybe, that person’s load will feel just a wee bit lighter.
#mentalhealthmonth
#mentalhealthminute
#talkaboutit
#seekhelp
#itsokaynottobeokay
#Therapy
#therapyworks
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2 months ago

PsychNG

When it comes to hope and optimism, think of Nigerians, who has consistently been ranked among the most optimistic nations in the world.

In Nigeria, almost everybody lives on a miracle. People believe that no matter what their circumstance is right now, it’s going to turn around. You even see it on billboards on city buses — the most common one is "No Condition Is Permanent."

Also, a good number has to do with the support system. You know, we have extended families — Wecall our cousins my brothers and sisters. We don’t see them as cousins. So you’re responsible not just for yourself but for your whole clan of people.

Life in Nigeria is incomparable to other nations. Unlike other countries where you can get arrest for playing loud music, you go to Lagos, the first thing that shocks you is the noise,the animation, how insanely lively and boisterous and loquacious it is — like a thousand voices in your head at the same time. It feels more alive.

A strong sense of connection to other people is important for mental health.

Hope and optimism are key things learn and relearn for the sake of mental health.

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2 months ago

PsychNG

Rough patch, a bad day, a major setback. Sometimes, it seems like one thing goes wrong after another. And another, and another.

Sometimes an unexpected challenge or an obstacle might come your way, and you find yourself stressing out, worrying and not knowing what to do. And, some days, you just have nothing. Zero motivation, no creativity. All of a sudden, you’re being plagued with self-doubt.

You think you have to be strong all the time.

You think you’re not allowed to cry, to admit that you’re not okay.

It’s okay to not be okay.

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#PsychNG
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