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Invasive Thoughts

Monday, June 24, 2013

There are many variables that have to be dealt with to remake your life into one that is healthier physically, emotionally, and nutritionally. To deny the existence of these variables will delay your growth.

One such variable is call obsessive compulsive disorder. There I am. I used to have thoughts that would, in effect, take possession of me. Sure, in your opinion, I should be able to control all of my thoughts—because you can. I can control most of my thoughts; however, many of my thoughts are like a run-away train, nothing is going to stop them except meditation. Medicines help, but they are not always long term. I would like to share a thought that I had and sometimes have: A person is crossing the street at a stop light and they are directly in front of me. I, then, pictured what would happen if I was to run them over. This thought, basically, is what got me diagnosed as having Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. I know many people who have had the same disturbing thought or one very similar.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD): What is it? According to WebMD, OCD is “a type of anxiety disorder, [it] is a potentially disabling illness that traps people in endless cycles of repetitive thoughts and behaviors. People with OCD are plagued by recurring and distressing thoughts, fears, or images (obsessions) they cannot control. The anxiety (nervousness) produced by these thoughts leads to an urgent need to perform certain rituals or routines (compulsions). The compulsive rituals are performed in an attempt to prevent the obsessive thoughts or to make them go away…The symptoms of OCD, which are the obsessions and compulsions, may vary.

Common obsessions include:

• Fear of dirt or contamination by germs.
• Fear of causing harm to another.
• Fear of making a mistake.
• Fear of being embarrassed or behaving in a socially unacceptable manner.
• Fear of thinking evil or sinful thoughts.
• Need for order, symmetry, or exactness.
• Excessive doubt and the need for constant reassurance.

Common compulsions include:

• Repeatedly bathing, showering, or washing hands.
• Refusing to shake hands or touch doorknobs.
• Repeatedly checking things, such as locks or stoves.
• Constant counting, mentally or aloud, while performing routine tasks.
• Constantly arranging things in a certain way.
• Eating foods in a specific order.
• Being stuck on words, images or thoughts, usually disturbing, that won't go away and can interfere with sleep.
• Repeating specific words, phrases, or prayers.
• Needing to perform tasks a certain number of times.
• Collecting or hoarding items with no apparent value.” (
ulsive-disorder, para. 1).

Does this mean everyone that displays some of the above have OCD? No. Going back to check to see if a door is locked is a good idea unless you are want to invite unwanted visitors into your home. Checking to make sure you have turned the iron off is a good idea unless you are intentionally trying to burn the place down.
There is one compulsion that is mostly missed: shopping. I really wish this did not describe me to a “T.” According to Owen Kelly, PhD. (2010) “…The characteristics of compulsive shopping disorder include:
• Preoccupation with shopping for unneeded items.
• Spending a great deal of time doing research on coveted items and/or shopping for unneeded items.
• Difficulty resisting the purchase of unneeded items.
• Financial difficulties because of uncontrolled shopping.
• Problems at work, school or home because of uncontrolled shopping”
rder.htm, para. 2

I can’t afford to be this way. I have asked family and friends to help me get past this obsession when they notice I am displaying it. First, I purchase things because it makes me feel better or good. Then, I can’t wait for the item to arrive. If they do not have a tracking system on the internet I will not buy from them. Since joining SparkPeople, I have lost a little weight. Recently, I ordered my old size which was too large. Instead of returning the item, I hoarded it with no intent of passing it on or returning it.


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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I find it interesting to read your blog. I don't have the problems you do, but I have been diagnosed with clinical depression, possibly with some bipolar tendencies. I find the one thing about buying and spending money. I have run up my credit cards to the point that I don't know if I will ever get them paid off. I promise myself I will put them up and quit using them. That never happens. Thank you for all the info. Thinking about you and wishing you the best. These types of diagnoses are often misunderstood. Hope you the best in your efforts to get control
    1789 days ago
    Sending happy thoughts your way!
    1790 days ago
    I have OCD as well and so does my son but we are under good control.
    1790 days ago
    Bettie--I am glad you blogged on this subject, which may likely touch on many peoples lives ............. in various degrees. I formerly strived for 'perfection' and my hubby kept helping me ................... Plus I know that perfection and peace do not necessarily keep the same company. So I have worked on finding a healthy balance ............ As for spending, a couple years back, I got the Quicken program and entered every purchase made and all living expenses. This really curbed spending, certainly excess spending and created an awareness of where money was being spent. Anyway, emoticon for sharing.
    1791 days ago
  • SKATER787
    Bettie, I have a lot more stuff than you do. Much more. I sold a few items through ebay and Amazon. I would have done more but I spent a lot of time at work. I'm very dedicated to my work. I need to shift some of that focus to do more sellin. Thanks for bringing up this blog. Also, I like to think that people who have a lot of stuff, they just have more varied interest. Nothing is all good or bad. There must be some good points too.
    1791 days ago

    Comment edited on: 6/24/2013 6:28:29 PM
  • SKATER787
    Sell a few items on ebay to get started. See if you can spark the OCD in your favor. Much better to be a seller than a buyer. Good luck.
    1791 days ago
  • KERRYG155
    I think everyone has some of those thoughts or issues. Pretty sure my daughter may have more than one. I am really glad you are working on it all and that you have a family that supports you. Again, great info.
    1791 days ago
    Thanks for sharing. I see myself in several of these traits, and only recently realized that they were symptomatic of OCD. Wishing us all good luck on our journey to wellness.
    1791 days ago
  • JULIA_211
    I see myself in "many" of the symptoms you mentioned above. I started noticing them when I stopped drinking almost 13 years ago. I thought it was withdrawals. Very interesting.

    I'm glad that you're getting treatment and I wish you well "always" on your health-journey!
    1791 days ago
    Always wishing you the best...

    no judgments here.....

    I think we all have moments where we picture certain things....I know I do.
    1791 days ago
    Thank you for sharing and for the first time I ever I have seen a window into OCD. Best wishes to you on your journey.
    1791 days ago
    Interesting....Thanks for sharing and best wishes on your journey to better health...
    1791 days ago
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