OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER (OCD)
treatment with Colin Boylan, LPCC
Does this sound familiar...
You experience recurring intrusive thoughts or images?
You repeat behaviors over and over again that are fueled by an overwhelming urge that you can't seem to control? (though secretly, maybe you’re not sure you want to gain control over these behaviors because they feel strangely satisfying to do them?)
Do you find that in order to get on to the next thing in your day, you have to do this behavior?
Are these intrusive thoughts or repetitive behaviors unwanted, and getting in the way of your normal daily life (or taking up hours of time that could be better spent?)
If you are one of the millions of people struggling with these challenges, rest assured that there is hope.
When you feel as though you have little or no control over certain invasive thoughts, and strong urges often lead you to behave impulsively, it is common to subsequently feel sad, anxious, or hopeless. Although these thoughts and behaviors might be detracting from your overall quality of life, they do not, and should not, define you.
I am here to coach you on effective techniques that will help you achieve a sense of well-being and control over the troubling symptoms you’re experiencing. Together, we will set treatment goals, and work towards them, helping you to recognize and cope with your triggers so that you can control your compulsions and get your life back.
Dealing with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder can be a challenge. The symptoms that accompany the disorder can put a damper on your quality of life and your ability to function normally throughout your day-to-day routine. I’d like to offer a compassionate and helping hand - you don’t have to journey through treatment alone. I understand the challenges OCD imposes on your life, and we’re here to help you get your life back on track.
Here is how I treat OCD, step by step:
The way I start treatment for OCD symptoms is by first discussing your specific case-- how the symptoms are showing up in your life, what has worked for you in the past in reining in your thoughts and behaviors, and what is still getting in your way.
Together we’ll tailor our approach to best suit you, and work to achieve a sense of overall well-being. Successful treatment will render you progressively less distracted by your obsessive thoughts and compulsive urges.
Once we have a treatment plan, I next want to familiarize you with the difference between the mind and the brain. It is important to point out that every troubling thought you have is not an accurate reflection of your personal values and true self. Knowing this, we will use this knowledge as a basis for discerning the difference between deceptive brain messages and the helpful brain messages that act as a “wise advocate” ultimately wanting what is best for your well-being.
Next, we will explore the ways in which the brain functions. Having an understanding about how the brain works will assist you as we practice coping techniques that will allow you to feel like less of a victim to your thoughts. This practice is known as self-directed neuroplasticity, and I have found it to be a very helpful tool in treating the symptoms of OCD.
Once you’ve come to an understanding about how the brain works and we’ve established a pattern of effective coping skills, we will focus on alternative activities, meant to distract from repetitive thoughts and compulsive urges, that you can quickly and effectively practice when you’re struggling to overcome strong impulses to engage in counterproductive behaviors.
Finally, I will help you learn to steadily place less value on your bothersome thoughts, so that you are able to redirect the negative energy towards positive goals and activities that more accurately represent your true self and core values.
Whether you’ve newly developed OCD, or you’ve been struggling with the disorder for years, I can help you restore your quality of life again. I am here to walk alongside you as you journey through treatment. Together we will minimize the disruptions you’re experiencing in your life as a result of your OCD in a non-judgmental, accepting environment. In doing so, you will be less troubled by your symptoms and will find a renewed sense of energy that you can devote to the things you want to accomplish and look forward to in life.