Monday, October 10, 2011

Using EFT for OCD

Why do we perform rituals? Sometimes to celebrate, to soothe and comfort or to honour something or someone, the reasons are varied. Obsessive compulsive anxiety dis-orders such as OCD also have ritualistic elements. Take someone who washes their hands all the time, what do they gain from these repeated actions? I would say, a sense of safety, routine, comfort, security, some sense of control, and many other things that will be unique and meaningful for them.

OCD is a symptom, or a collection of symptoms, mostly due to unfelt pain. Unfelt pain often manifests as anxiety and one of the most common sources of anxiety is an attachment dis-order. If we don't bond early on with our mothers/caregivers we won't feel safe, comforted, loved and secure. In the experiment below, we can see the powerful effects that a strong attachment can provide.

It's very important to honour the defenses or rituals someone has created for themselves in order to feel safe and comforted. Shaming and criticising doesn't work, it often drives the person deeper into anxiety and shame which then needs to be relieved in whatever way they have found works for them. See if any tailenders (objections in the form of emotions, beliefs, thoughts, memories, sensations) come up when you say the following:

I honour my need to feel comforted

I honour how I am meeting my unmet needs 

I accept my need to repeat ... to feel safe

I choose to feel kindness for my need for (name the need, or needs, that you feel most strongly right now)

My behaviours/rituals make me feel ...

Doing ... makes me feel very safe and that feels good

Ritual is the passage way of the soul into the Infinite ~ Algernon Blackwood


sharmishtha said...

ever since i have had my pet kitten i wash my hands so many times that i have to sometimes check if it is becoming OCD LOL. its a very common problem in India, we even have a name for it. one of my grandmother's had it, she used to drive us crazy.

Noreen Barron, MA said...

Do you know what Trisha, I think all of us are on the continuum of something or other! Have a great week xx

sharmishtha said...

i believe so too.

you too have a beautiful weekend. :)

lots of love.