Fan me on FB: http://facebook.com/jodiamanlove
Follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/jodiaman
Find out about my online anxiety recovery programs:
Read commentary of this podcast at http://jodiaman.com/getting-rid-ocd-shame/and add to the discussion!
Read transcription of this podcast here: http://jodiaman.tumblr.com/post/125532764254
About a year ago, I made a video about OCD and it caused a lot of controversy because I think people didn't understand it. I've been working with people with OCD for a really long time and I've known a lot of people really close to me that have obsessions and compulsions that lead them to do patterns.
Sometimes they're just doing patterns and it's mildly annoying and other times it is so annoying and overwhelming that it takes up a big portion of their lives.
This causes a huge amount of suffering.
People come and go into this state of being. Often people stay in it for a really long time and it gets worse, and there's less and less they feel they can do in their lives. What I notice about all of these people is that there's something that drives that.
Usually it's guilt and shame.
I understand this because I see this as the root of so many problems in our life -- fear, guilt, and shame. If we really unpack them, these roots are under all of our problems -- all of them. So why wouldn't they be the root of OCD?
What I started to notice when I'm working with people with OCD and OCPD is that there's this guilt and shame about doing their patterns. Then, they get really frustrated, overwhelmed, and hate the fact they have this problem. This frustration and overwhelm is bigger in energy than the original pattern, which makes them more obsessed.
The more we pay attention to something because we're frustrated with it, the more energy we give it, and the more obsessed we get with it. If we can get rid of some of that shame and guilt about doing the patterns, we can cut them down exponentially.
Guilt and shame feeds the OCD. It gives it more power. Many people are angry and get really shamed about it, which increases their anger. They do this before they even realize it, so they just think they have an anger problem.
When I'm working with people, we ultimately want to stop their patterns, but first I want to take away the guilt and shame about doing them. When we take the energy out of the pattern and obsession, people stop them so much easier than when they’re addressing it, trying to get themselves to stop.
Of course some patterns do hurt or harm you, so we want to stop those. But those little patterns that just drive you nuts, like making sure all of the drawers are closed or flipping the light on and off ten times -- you're not hurting anybody. Right now, try to take the guilt and shame out of it and see if you could take the power out of it.
Thank you so much for listening!