OCD Tips by June Canaris, MA, MFT, EdD, Clinical Psychologist
For many types of anxiety disorders, depression and even certain types of mental illness, NIMH, National Institute of Mental Health suggests CBT, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, rather than more traditional psychotherapy. CBT is a form of treatment that focuses on examining thought patterns that cause distress and developing more realistic interpretations of the events. This is a structured form of counseling, individuated with your psychotherapist. This tip is a modified step of what CBT encompasses and should not substitute a psychotherapist’s treatment plan.
When one notices that they’re thoughts have lead to feelings of anxiousness, stress, or any other negative emotion, acknowledge that this train of thought is unhelpful. After such recognition, the simplest technique is to change direction. What does this mean? Well, if you are watching a television show while ruminating, change the station or turn off the TV; if sitting on the couch or your bed, get up and take a walk; if reading a book, put the book down; if in a particular room, move to another room. The point is to change the environment as it may be triggering the thoughts; even if it’s not the trigger, the change will redirect one’s thought patterns; thereby, interrupting the rumination.
-June Canaris, MA, MFT, EdD, Clinical Psychologist
Please note: These tips are not meant to substitute good psychiatric or psycho-therapy rather these tips are to augment such therapies and should be discussed with your therapist.