Originally Posted by Mosesman
Hey everyone. I deal with a variety of obsessions which come and go in waves. A lot of them have to do with religion and the most common one involves me departing from my religion - which is a huge part of my identity. I think that is why it is targeted by my OCD. In any event, I have recent come "back" after some time away from religion but now feel the obsessions coming on as I try to live the lifestyle which it teaches (I'm Catholic by the way). I want to live out my life as a Catholic but I really don't want to have to put up with the anxiety and obsessions. If anything, I want to show people that religion can be sane and reasonable, rather than governed by feelings. The problem is, I've been searching for ways to get rid of the obsession/anxiety - which usually is in the form of a unbearing weight or bodily unease - and these can lead me down unhealthy paths. Do you guys have any suggestions for ways to diffuse the mental static and move on with my life?
Thanks a bunch.
Hi, I had pure O very badly when I was 14, and it lasted from then until I was 16. I was being bullied and having the worst time of my life then. The social anxiety also manifested at this time. I'm still dealing with social anxiety but the pure O symptoms (unwelcome horrifying images/fear) is virtually healed. I started seeing the school counsellor halfway through high school which helped a little bit but not a lot, tried a few different shrinks and tried clonazepam (didn't help one bit in my situation). At the end of high school I was introduced through the school counsellor to a psychiatrist who also did therapy. I went to her describing all my symptoms and after a few sessions she convinced me to try an anti-depressant, which improved my symptoms SIGNIFICANTLY. Once that first layer was gone, we started goal focused therapy.
Before taking anti-depressants I vaguely remember being a blushing, shaking, sweating girl, and everything was just so much worse. The main themes of my unwanted pure O visions were satanic/anti-religious images, and doing sexual stuff to people that I would never want to do that to. It was just lovely. Not!
So I am more comfortable going outside, at least comfortable enough to actually do it, and actually have always found it hard to stay inside for a long time. Going outside even to sit in the backyard and absorb a little sunshine makes me feel better. I love nature, and feel closer to it than most people. So I like to be near it whenever possible, preferably away from other people.
In summary things that have helped me get over my pure O are:
-Moving/doing some kind of physical activity like cleaning the house, walking, bicycling, etc.
-Anti-depressants combined with therapy (goal focused therapy was really good for me and might be for you too, ask about it if you can)
-Nature, the company of animals and plants
-Art (I've channeled my emotions into some weird abstract pictures and found it helpful)
-Journalling (I like trying to find the root cause of my fears, writing what good things happened, things I like about myself, goals, venting)
-Watching documentaries or reading biographies about people I can relate to, learning stuff about the mind on TED talks, the vlog brothers, etc.
-Relaxing mellow music, like this cute soothing instrumental by Lullastone.
-And self help books like This Is How by Augusten Burroughs
Hang in there!