I saw this review on Amazon for a OCD workbook. I thought it was a great take on OCD. This was written by David M. on 8/27/20.
“I would like to add my opinion about OCD.
OCD is just another Addiction.
We, humans, are wired to do two things – Seek Pleasure and Avoid Pain. Both are basically one thing. To be in the Pleasurable state of existence.
In short, OCD is a self-drugging behavior to avoid pain, so the brain can release feel-good chemicals.
All our systems are wired for pleasure-seeking and escaping the pain. When we find the pleasure or escape the pain- there is a reward- we feel good, euphoria, a relief. Our brains release the ‘Feel-good chemicals- from our own brain’s pharmacy’, the neurotransmitters Dopamine, Norepinephrine, Serotonin, GABA, etc… these are the ones we develop a ‘tough love’ relationship with.
Substances, like drugs and alcohol, stimulate the release of our own ‘pharmacy’, BUT, not only substances do that- Reinforced Behavior does that too, more correctly, thoughts, emotions, and actions that reinforce the ‘feel good’ such as gambling and love addictions, these behaviors release neurotransmitters of reward due to pleasure, are addictive and cause withdrawal when ceased.
As research shown, OCD is related to childhood traumas and the resulting lack of self-love.
When self-love is not around, Fear sips in. That’s just a survival mechanism. The mind say: No self-love? No pleasure? No problem, I will give you something to avoid- that will make me feel good. That thing is Fear/Anxiety- the source of pain to be avoided- so you can feel good about yourself when you managed to avoid it.
OCD is just an upgraded version of anxiety, when the subconscious actually ‘Tames’ you to get that good feeling when Anxiety by itself didn’t result in self-love and relaxation. This process is addicting, making sure you will ‘feel good’ many times throughout the day, keeping the ‘high’.
Ever wondered why compulsions are repetitive because the brain sees it as self-dosing, each action serves a dose, more handwashing, more doses of feel good to make the pain go away, until after 10 times- Doubt which is the measuring tool of how many doses are needed gives a temporary green light, until the next craving.
That is why, Obsessions are basically just Cravings- a Call for Action- “Give me my dose of good feeling! Go and avoid this painful fear!”
Have you ever wondered why other people don’t get inside that loop a person with OCD find themselves of ‘Thoughts/Feelings/Images/Urges’ Because in the same way, a non-addicted person cannot figure why an addict Craves drugs, and cannot ‘just stop with it’. OCD Obsessions are just Craving, that’s why they come unsolicited, that’s why certain situations flare them up, the subconscious mind finds an opportunity to get a dose and evokes an obsession to get the compulsion- the dose of feel good.
Our brains are the ultimate ‘Drug Designers’, and can come with the worst fears to make you do one thing- Dose yourself with Avoidance.
That is why, as suggested for drug addiction, on how to deal with cravings, perhaps one of the best things to do is just sit with it, surf the pain, watch the film the subconscious brain plays. What you see/think/feel means nothing, and nothing about you, it’s a movie played for you. A trick. Feel the urges until they pass, you are stronger than you imagine, and pain should be confronted to be defeated. Obsessions will come as cravings come, they will flare when there is a high chance to get the ‘fix’. But, with time they decrease until they disappear, because you train your subconscious mind there is NO ‘fix’ from those thoughts, stories, urges, and movies.”