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Guest Phil10

Becoming obsessed with thoughts - things getting worse (Merged Thread)

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13 hours ago, Phil10 said:

But do you agree these thoughts are pretty awful to have as like many with ocd? The problem is they seem so real and awful it’s hard to dismiss them? 

Its easy to say not dwell on it but with anxiety and ocd that’s what you do. My mind no longer feels my own due to the ocd thoughts. 

Letting a thought just sit there is very hard especially when you have an anxious response from it. The information struggles to get through to me so even therapy might not work right now. All I can hope is one day it gets better as it’s hard to find a solution that works? 

The solution is, stop trying to find one. It's simple. 

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14 hours ago, Phil10 said:

Its easy to say not dwell on it but with anxiety and ocd that’s what you do. My mind no longer feels my own due to the ocd thoughts. 

Letting a thought just sit there is very hard especially when you have an anxious response from it. The information struggles to get through to me so even therapy might not work right now. All I can hope is one day it gets better as it’s hard to find a solution that works? 

No one has said that overcoming OCD is easy, in fact we have said the opposite, that it is hard, and that it will take time.

But it is not hard to find a solution that works, the solution has been described to you many many times.  Its a solution that we KNOW works both from our own first hand experience as well as decades of evidence and scholarly research showing it works.  It's called CBT.  That involves working to stop the compulsions, working to challenge the approach you have been taking and why it doesn't work, working to change the way you frame the situation.  Things won't just "get better", you have to do the work to recover.  

Lets say you break your leg.  After some months the cast comes off.  Your leg is no longer broken, but it feels weak and its hard to use.  You want things to be back to the way they were before your broke your leg.  You sit around waiting for things to get better.  But they don't.  In fact sitting around just makes things worse.  The doctor tells you what you need to do to get better, daily physical therapy.  It will be hard, and painful, but if you do it your leg will get strong again.  So you try it a couple times.  It hurts, you feel tired, your leg is still weak.  So you give up.  And you sit around waiting for things to "get better" and looking for a solution that works.  Meanwhile your leg continues to weaken.  And soon, because you aren't using it so does your OTHER leg.  Your situation gets WORSE not better.  All because you won't commit to the solution that WILL work because it didn't work RIGHT AWAY.  The only way your leg will get better is IF you do the physical therapy.  The only way your OCD will get better is IF you do the mental therapy.  And hey, maybe you need a little assistance, especially at first, so you go to a physical therapist for your leg.  And hey maybe you even need a little help with the pain so you can get through the exercises so they give you a medication you can take.  The same is true of mental therapy.  You can get guidance from a professional to help, especially useful and worthwhile at the beginning.  But you still have to do the work, they can only guide you.  And you can get medication that might help make it easier for you to do the mental exercises, but you still need to do the exercises if you want to get better.

Its up to you whether you want to get better, we can't make you do the work.  If you don't do the therapy, the CBT, it definitely won't work.  If you do it and stick with it, it probably will.  Thats your choice, definitely won't vs probably will.  Yes it will be hard, yes it will be slow, but you have to decide to do it and if you do, the only way you will have success is if you understand and expect that things won't change over night.  That just going to a few therapy sessions won't "cure" you.  You MUST do the work.  It doesn't need to be perfect every time, you can (and almost assuredly will) make mistakes.  But its the solution.  It does work.  Waiting around for another one means letting things continue to get worse.  Thats your choice. 

 

2 hours ago, Phil10 said:

I have booked another appointment with the theripst to see if helps. Not seen her since November and money is tight but feel I need the help. 

Thats great to hear.  But again, don't just go in expecting things to be fixed in a session or two.  Go in ready to listen to what they say, to set up a concrete plan to move forward.  To commit to making changes to create lasting results over time, just like an exercise plan.  Good luck.

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So I had my therapy today.

She focused on one issue this time contamination rather than just a mixture of my thoughts. This may be useful to focus on one but it means I still have these lingering worries about people or gods ect controlling my mind, existence and solipsism?

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4 hours ago, Phil10 said:

She focused on one issue this time contamination rather than just a mixture of my thoughts. This may be useful to focus on one but it means I still have these lingering worries about people or gods ect controlling my mind, existence and solipsism?

As the saying goes, Rome was not built in a day.  Of course you want to be free of all the intrusive thoughts you have right away, thats natural, but you have to accept that recovery is going to be an incremental process, that its basically impossible to tackle all your problems at once.  If you focus only on the negative you won't be able to make progress.  Listen to your therapist, do the work, and accept that everything won't change overnight.

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11 hours ago, Phil10 said:

So I had my therapy today.

She focused on one issue this time contamination rather than just a mixture of my thoughts. This may be useful to focus on one but it means I still have these lingering worries about people or gods ect controlling my mind, existence and solipsism?

Your therapist can't focus on everything in a single session, it will take time. Also remember that these symptoms are emerging because you're highly anxious at the moment. As your anxiety decreases, the different manifestations of your OCD will all decrease too. This is what I'm experiencing at the moment. 

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18 hours ago, malina said:

Your therapist can't focus on everything in a single session, it will take time. Also remember that these symptoms are emerging because you're highly anxious at the moment. As your anxiety decreases, the different manifestations of your OCD will all decrease too. This is what I'm experiencing at the moment. 

Thanks she had previously let me discuss all my issues

I spent an hour chatting about contamination I mean I felt a bit better but only a small amount.

I am really struggling with the existence thoughts right now I feel ill with it feeling somebody else controls my thoughts it seems absolutely awful. Nobody can prove it really I mean it’s unlikely but I still feel very awful. I became obsessed with solipsism for months and it’s been replaced by this worry now. Does anybody else worry about this stuff? I worry every choice I made as preplanned and all this free will and lack of control of the mind seems to troubling me. 

I know it seems trivial I have another few weeks before I see the theripst how can I take my my mind off it I mean night time is my worst time usually? 

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18 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

Nobody can prove it

This is the key point.  Nobody can prove it.  Worrying about it, dwelling on it, spending time focused on it is not going to change that.  You can't force the thoughts to go away. The harder you try to NOT think about them, the more you will think about them.  You can make the choice not to care about the thoughts though.  If the thought happens, you let it happen, you let it just be there, you don't engage with it.  You don't have to respond to it.  You don't have to ruminate on it or analyze it or do anything with it.  If it happens, it happens, you continue to get on with your day.  Eventually your mind will stop surfacing these thoughts IF you don't react to them.  You need to take the attitude of "so what". Every time the thought pops in to your head, so what?  Who cares?  You don't have to.  

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18 minutes ago, dksea said:

This is the key point.  Nobody can prove it.  Worrying about it, dwelling on it, spending time focused on it is not going to change that.  You can't force the thoughts to go away. The harder you try to NOT think about them, the more you will think about them.  You can make the choice not to care about the thoughts though.  If the thought happens, you let it happen, you let it just be there, you don't engage with it.  You don't have to respond to it.  You don't have to ruminate on it or analyze it or do anything with it.  If it happens, it happens, you continue to get on with your day.  Eventually your mind will stop surfacing these thoughts IF you don't react to them.  You need to take the attitude of "so what". Every time the thought pops in to your head, so what?  Who cares?  You don't have to.  

Yes but that’s very hard.

I don’t know why the thoughts trouble me I mean do they not trouble other people? 

It makes you feel it’s hard to live your life as such as you feel alien and like you have no control so it’s hard to let go of it

I mean I am sure in a few months it will be something else my theripst said my mind is always looking for something and there is lots of philosophical ideas around. The issue is I still feel slightly troubled by solispism so these worries can linger I mean I sort of dismissed that idea but it was only when I said it’s prob not true I finally let it go.

I mean it would be quite mad if all the millions of people in the world were controlled like robots but perhaps it’s as likely as finding aliens on mars? Perhaps I could rate the thought? 

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My latest externaialism thought is freaking out about being alive or existing 

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36 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

I don’t know why the thoughts trouble me I mean do they not trouble other people? 

Yes you do, its called OCD.  This is what OCD does, it makes you feel doubt and anxiety about random thoughts, then you focus on them, start performing compulsive behaviors to try and eliminate the anxiety, and in the end just make the thoughts dig in deeper.

As for the second question, no, for the most part people (particularly those without mental illness) are not troubled by these thoughts.  To the extent that they even consider them, they realize that wasting the amount of time and energy you have worrying about them is pointless.  Yes its harder for OCD sufferers to dismiss these thoughts as it is for non-OCD sufferers but thats just the unfortunate reality.  You can continue talking about how hard it is, or you can change your behavior so it stops being so hard.  Again, yes I recognize its more difficult for you, but you still have a choice, you can still choose to dwell on this or you can choose to take the steps needed to overcome OCD.
 

40 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

It makes you feel it’s hard to live your life as such as you feel alien and like you have no control so it’s hard to let go of it

 I mean I am sure in a few months it will be something else my theripst said my mind is always looking for something and there is lots of philosophical ideas around. The issue is I still feel slightly troubled by solispism so these worries can linger I mean I sort of dismissed that idea but it was only when I said it’s prob not true I finally let it go.

I mean it would be quite mad if all the millions of people in the world were controlled like robots but perhaps it’s as likely as finding aliens on mars? Perhaps I could rate the thought? 

This is all more compulsive behavior.  Ruminating, analyzing, etc.  
You DO NOT need to solve these questions.  You DO NOT need to spend even one second analyzing, debating, ruminating on them.  You can CHOOSE not to spend time on them.  Yes it will feel hard at first, but you can do it.  A smoker feels the NEED to smoke, but they don't actually have to.  You feel the NEED to analyze these thoughts, but you don't actually have to.  It's up to you which path you take, but posting more about your specific worries is just a compulsion. Its not going to help.

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5 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

My latest externaialism thought is freaking out about being alive or existing 

More OCD.  You don't have to engage these questions.

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3 minutes ago, dksea said:

Yes you do, its called OCD.  This is what OCD does, it makes you feel doubt and anxiety about random thoughts, then you focus on them, start performing compulsive behaviors to try and eliminate the anxiety, and in the end just make the thoughts dig in deeper.

As for the second question, no, for the most part people (particularly those without mental illness) are not troubled by these thoughts.  To the extent that they even consider them, they realize that wasting the amount of time and energy you have worrying about them is pointless.  Yes its harder for OCD sufferers to dismiss these thoughts as it is for non-OCD sufferers but thats just the unfortunate reality.  You can continue talking about how hard it is, or you can change your behavior so it stops being so hard.  Again, yes I recognize its more difficult for you, but you still have a choice, you can still choose to dwell on this or you can choose to take the steps needed to overcome OCD.
 

This is all more compulsive behavior.  Ruminating, analyzing, etc.  
You DO NOT need to solve these questions.  You DO NOT need to spend even one second analyzing, debating, ruminating on them.  You can CHOOSE not to spend time on them.  Yes it will feel hard at first, but you can do it.  A smoker feels the NEED to smoke, but they don't actually have to.  You feel the NEED to analyze these thoughts, but you don't actually have to.  It's up to you which path you take, but posting more about your specific worries is just a compulsion. Its not going to help.

True but I feel I have no control over my thoughts so I feel like a puppet on a string and no free will it’s not a case of I want answers it’s more a that I am what I feel and I believe what I think. Whether it’s contamination or existence. 

So yes not sure I even need answers but I do feel sick and ill with the thoughts becuase my head has bought into them. They feel true it feels like my mind is controlled? Why because I had the thought.

This seems to be how my ocd is presenting itself at the moment seems strange but whatever I think I believe it 

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It just seems pointless if I was a puppet on a string no matter what I do it’s  already set in stone it’s quite an awful way to see things 

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1 minute ago, Phil10 said:

True but I feel I have no control over my thoughts so I feel like a puppet on a string and no free will it’s not a case of I want answers it’s more a that I am what I feel and I believe what I think. Whether it’s contamination or existence. 

So yes not sure I even need answers but I do feel sick and ill with the thoughts becuase my head has bought into them. They feel true it feels like my mind is controlled? Why because I had the thought.

This seems to be how my ocd is presenting itself at the moment seems strange but whatever I think I believe it 

You have two choices:
1. Accept that this is OCD, decide you want to get better and CHOOSE to act accordingly.
2. Continue as you are.

Thats it.  Thats all there is.  These are your two options.  If you want to get better you have to choose to do things differently.  You have to choose to accept the advice we (and your therapist) are giving you.  You have to choose to stop saying "True but...".  You have to choose to stop giving in to "What if...".  
You have to choose.  

Right now you are making the choice over and over to continue to engage with the OCD.  You are making the choice not to listen to or accept the advice from myself, Polar Bear, etc.  These are choices you are making.  Until you choose differently there is nothing more to say.  And if, by chance, your latest fear is true, that your thoughts and actions are somehow outside your control, well then nothing we say here will change things for you either, so again there is really nothing more to say.  

I hope you will listen this time.  I hope you will take in what has been said.  But only you can make the choice.

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8 minutes ago, Phil10 said:

It just seems pointless if I was a puppet on a string no matter what I do it’s  already set in stone it’s quite an awful way to see things 

There are four possible scenarios:

1. You have NO control over your actions, you keep doing things as you have been.
2. You have NO control over your actions, you CHANGE how you have been doing things.
3. You HAVE control over your actions, you keep doing things as you have been.
4. You HAVE control over your actions, you CHANGE how you have been doing things.

If 1 or 2 are true, it doesn't matter, your controlled either way.
If 4 is true then you have the power to make things better and you make that choice.
If 3 is true then you have the power to make things better but you waste it because you are afraid of 1 or 2 being true.

Doing nothing because you might be controlled by something else is illogical, it means you continue to suffer even if you have the power to change it.
Doing SOMETHING even though you might be controlled by something else is the ONLY logical course of action, because it gives you the only possible outcome for happiness in the case you are not controlled.

Under no scenario does it make sense to continue doing what you are doing.  None.

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For me, the suggestion Phil that you are being controlled is just another theme of OCD - in this case magical thinking. 

I used to have magical thinking; I was afraid to view the church spire at night in silhouette, for example. Now I was a senior chorister in that church at the time, very comfortable in and around the church where I spent two evenings a week practising, 2 services a day on Sundays, and often a wedding on Saturday in the summer. 

I was only about 12  and didn't realise this was OCD at work, but nevertheless applied logic and considered the rationality of my fear. Effectively I now know I was carrying out what in CBT for OCD is called a "behavioural experiment". This judged my belief that there might be a negative consequence to my seeing the church spire in silhouette at night against the possibility that I was just worried that that might be true. 

The experiment showed I  was simply worried that it might be true and there was no evidence whatsoever to suggest it might be true.

From that moment on the obsession evaporated and no longer bothered me - a perfect outcome. 

This shows how an individual - and even a 12-year-old boy - can apply CBT principles and make significant change to their OCD thinking and behaviours. 

Now of course you might say that is not much of a distressing issue against the obsession of being controlled. But I had a couple of other magical thinking obsessions too at that time - fear of stepping on the cracks in paving stones ; and fear of the consequences of not periodically carrying out a time-consuming counting ritual. 

Having discovered the behavioural experiment CBT method, I successfully applied that same thinking to both of these obsessions, and the compulsive urge to carry them out evaporated. 

So for me, this method of challenging our obsessional thinking is a massively useful tool and comes with the recommendation of both Roy the kid and Roy the senior :)

 

 

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14 hours ago, taurean said:

For me, the suggestion Phil that you are being controlled is just another theme of OCD - in this case magical thinking. 

I used to have magical thinking; I was afraid to view the church spire at night in silhouette, for example. Now I was a senior chorister in that church at the time, very comfortable in and around the church where I spent two evenings a week practising, 2 services a day on Sundays, and often a wedding on Saturday in the summer. 

I was only about 12  and didn't realise this was OCD at work, but nevertheless applied logic and considered the rationality of my fear. Effectively I now know I was carrying out what in CBT for OCD is called a "behavioural experiment". This judged my belief that there might be a negative consequence to my seeing the church spire in silhouette at night against the possibility that I was just worried that that might be true. 

The experiment showed I  was simply worried that it might be true and there was no evidence whatsoever to suggest it might be true.

From that moment on the obsession evaporated and no longer bothered me - a perfect outcome. 

This shows how an individual - and even a 12-year-old boy - can apply CBT principles and make significant change to their OCD thinking and behaviours. 

Now of course you might say that is not much of a distressing issue against the obsession of being controlled. But I had a couple of other magical thinking obsessions too at that time - fear of stepping on the cracks in paving stones ; and fear of the consequences of not periodically carrying out a time-consuming counting ritual. 

Having discovered the behavioural experiment CBT method, I successfully applied that same thinking to both of these obsessions, and the compulsive urge to carry them out evaporated. 

So for me, this method of challenging our obsessional thinking is a massively useful tool and comes with the recommendation of both Roy the kid and Roy the senior :)

 

 

Thanks yes it may be a bit of magical thinking going on. I don’t really get what that means with ocd though. But yes it’s defo ocd at work here. Challenging the thoughts is hard perhaps writing it down will help challenge them. 

But yes I hope it gets better soon the existence questions really trouble me but I guess as I see with all ocd whatever the topic the anxiety seems to be the same. 

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15 hours ago, dksea said:

There are four possible scenarios:

1. You have NO control over your actions, you keep doing things as you have been.
2. You have NO control over your actions, you CHANGE how you have been doing things.
3. You HAVE control over your actions, you keep doing things as you have been.
4. You HAVE control over your actions, you CHANGE how you have been doing things.

If 1 or 2 are true, it doesn't matter, your controlled either way.
If 4 is true then you have the power to make things better and you make that choice.
If 3 is true then you have the power to make things better but you waste it because you are afraid of 1 or 2 being true.

Doing nothing because you might be controlled by something else is illogical, it means you continue to suffer even if you have the power to change it.
Doing SOMETHING even though you might be controlled by something else is the ONLY logical course of action, because it gives you the only possible outcome for happiness in the case you are not controlled.

Under no scenario does it make sense to continue doing what you are doing.  None.

Yeah I mean I had a breakdown in 2016 and I never wanted to get out of bed felt like giving up and felt I needed pushed around to get by. I get what you are saying I can’t give in to the ocd and I have to believe I have my own mind. 

Logically it would defeat all science and purpose of life. Life would have no meaning if it was all controlled. And if there was a god why would I be telling everybody? Is everybody controlled? Is it just me? 

I seen a video on YouTube which says it takes a lot more to believe stuff doesn’t exist than does.

Some of my ocd has become a little abstract I’m worrying about more questions that few ask, my compulsions are failing again very little litriture of this online. It’s like an ocd bully continues to beat me down. I’m guessing you don’t believe the world is all preplanned and controlled? Perhaps this theory can be placed in the flat earthers list or did a celebrity really die conspiracy theory. And logically not every conspiracy theory in life can be true and so many lack evidence and are only based on lack of 100% certainty. 

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21 hours ago, Phil10 said:

Thanks she had previously let me discuss all my issues

I spent an hour chatting about contamination I mean I felt a bit better but only a small amount.

I am really struggling with the existence thoughts right now I feel ill with it feeling somebody else controls my thoughts it seems absolutely awful. Nobody can prove it really I mean it’s unlikely but I still feel very awful. I became obsessed with solipsism for months and it’s been replaced by this worry now. Does anybody else worry about this stuff? I worry every choice I made as preplanned and all this free will and lack of control of the mind seems to troubling me. 

I know it seems trivial I have another few weeks before I see the theripst how can I take my my mind off it I mean night time is my worst time usually? 

Phil, OCD is about control and afraid of losing it. Of course you're afraid that you're not in control because it's the nature of your condition. I worry about this stuff too. The more you allow yourself to think about it, the more anxious you will be. Accep that it's OCD and stop ruminating, that is the only thing that will help. 

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5 hours ago, Phil10 said:

Logically it would defeat all science and purpose of life. Life would have no meaning if it was all controlled. And if there was a god why would I be telling everybody? Is everybody controlled? Is it just me? 

I seen a video on YouTube which says it takes a lot more to believe stuff doesn’t exist than does.

Some of my ocd has become a little abstract I’m worrying about more questions that few ask, my compulsions are failing again very little litriture of this online. It’s like an ocd bully continues to beat me down. I’m guessing you don’t believe the world is all preplanned and controlled? Perhaps this theory can be placed in the flat earthers list or did a celebrity really die conspiracy theory. And logically not every conspiracy theory in life can be true and so many lack evidence and are only based on lack of 100% certainty. 

Phil, this entire post is more rumination, more compulsion.  You keep describing your thoughts and how you continue to think about these questions.  You need to stop trying to answer them.  You need to make a choice.

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On 24/01/2019 at 00:40, dksea said:

Phil, this entire post is more rumination, more compulsion.  You keep describing your thoughts and how you continue to think about these questions.  You need to stop trying to answer them.  You need to make a choice.

Yes I can’t seem stop these thoughts going round my mind it’s a daily thing right now need some tips to beat these thoughts? 

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We have told you many, many times what to do, Phil. 

You can't directly stop the thoughts. You can slow down and stop compulsions, which equates to not paying attention to the thoughts. Over time, the thoughts will decrease.

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13 minutes ago, PolarBear said:

We have told you many, many times what to do, Phil. 

You can't directly stop the thoughts. You can slow down and stop compulsions, which equates to not paying attention to the thoughts. Over time, the thoughts will decrease.

I am finding it difficult. When I’m working I feel fine but I can’t be at work all day? I’m at my worst at home then public transport I feel anxious. When I’m sat at home doing nothing it’s when it hits me at its worst 

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I also have had thoughts that ocd can lead to becoming a vegetable state or memory loss or losing your mind. How likely is this?

When I have these thoughts I feel strange like everything is off. 

Im blaming not recovering from ocd on the fact I fear someone controls my mind so it’s an excuse to not get better.

Pehaps someone has gone through similar? I feel like a set of scales on one side is existence fears and the other side is contamination fears. I feel I need to worry about something this is the issue. I’ve almost learned to worry?

Edited by Phil10

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What you are doing is not working Phil. You keep posting about your situation, over and over again. You ask for help and support. We give that to you. You go back to posting about your situation. Round and round you go.

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