Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder in which people have unwanted and repeated thoughts, feelings, ideas, sensations (obsessions), or behaviors that make them feel driven to do something (compulsions).
Approximately 2.3% of the population in the US between ages 18- 54 suffers from OCD, which outranks mental disorders such as: schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or panic disorder.
Typically, a person’s OCD will fall into one of the following four areas: 1.Obsessively checking things for safety to prevent danger/disaster 2. Fearing contamination that can cause disease or fatality. 3.Hoarding, inability to discard worn out and used possessions. 4. Rumination and intrusive thinking about something or someone.
It is OK if you check on your door locks regularly, or wash your hands every time you come home from the street, or perhaps you tend to keep your old dresses or pants in the closet and never throw them away. However, if these mild and rare obsessions consume excessive amounts of one’s time in daily life, cause significant distress and anguish in oneself and others, interfere with daily functioning at home, school, or work – then they become Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
There are two main approaches to treat OCD: pharmacological and therapy. Hypnosis, as a form of therapy, can be used to help ease the symptoms of OCD.
How does hypnosis for OCD work exactly? First of all, let’s understand the mental thought processes of a person suffering from this disorder.
A person with OCD ( especially in the case of checking and contamination fears) usually believes that if you don’t follow certain rule or routine, something bad will happen. This is almost like an algorithm that controls the action in the computer software. If there is X, then Y will follow. In the case of OCD, there tends to be a similar simple algorithm in the mind of a person. It’s a thought algorithm, which predicts one’s action and therefore overall behavior.
Very rarely a sufferer would admit out loud to anyone or even to himself what this “Y” is all about, precisely what this bad consequence from not following “X” -the rule/routine can surmount to. Because the “Y” often tends to be quite illogical and irrational in its base. Here are some examples:
“If I don’t wash my hands today (X), the germs will invade my palms, enter the bloodstream and I will get sick, rot and die (Y).”
“If I don’t step on the lines in the pavement as I walk, I will screw up the order and get anxious, freak out and lose my mind. People will see me go crazy and will laugh at me.”
“If I don’t tap my desk three times before I leave my room, I will have bad luck and have bad day or week.”
“If don’t check electric or gas stove knobs every five minutes at night, my house will explode and I will die.”
“ If I don’t write five examples of OCD algorithms right now, nobody will read my articles, ever.”
As you can see, all of the above examples show a yearning for rules, order and some sort of structure that ought to be followed. Here is one more example from a hoarder:
“ If I don’t pick up this old and used appliance I just found on the street, it will be left alone, unused, and I will feel more sad and out of place just like this lonely object right now. ”
Collecting old used things from the street gives hoarders some sense of order, peace and acceptance.
Let’s look at how hypnosis can help one ease these obsessive thoughts and therefore create well-being and natural sense of peace. Clinical hypnosis works with one simple formula: a trained hypnotist induces a state of receptivity ( trance or focused attention) and programs the mind with affirmations (specific belief statements). Various hypnotic inductions are used to establish such state.
Beliefs like “ If I shake people’s hands, their germs will invade my skin, crawl underneath it causing me illness and death” can be reframed into a new program like: “ Shaking people’s hands is OK, people do this regularly and stay healthy and alive. So will you. From this time onward you feel free calm and relaxed shaking people’s hands.”
Beliefs like “ If I don’t wash the dishes and place glasses all in specific order before leaving my apartment, I will get bad luck.” could be reframed into “ Bad luck has nothing to do with dish washing or placing glasses in a specific order. You let go of this idea, it is useless and has no rational base. You wash your dishes and place glasses neatly as any other person would with no connection to any bad or good luck. It is a mere activity, it no longer bears any meaning.”
These are the shortened versions of programming which could be used to help one overcome obsessive-compulsive thinking. Every person with OCD has a unique set of intricate thought patterns in the form of algorithmic belief statements. Therefore a unique customized programming is required. This programming is created only after the client has communicated his or her belief system about certain obsessive behavior.
In addition to personal programming with positive affirmations, a client is also taught relaxation techniques and self-hypnosis to help deal with tension and obsessive thinking.
To help you ease the discomfort associated with OCD, schedule a hypnosis session with Darryl McCullagh at 07751227738 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org