Lifetime OCD Recovery: What is it and how do I get there?Oct 23, 2023
The Lifetime Recovery Stage is where I've been for a few years now, and I coined this term to help people understand that you don't have to spend your life battling symptoms of OCD. You can life a life free of OCD and the mental and physical symptoms that come with it!
So what is the lifetime recovery stage that my programs teach you how to achieve?
Essentially, when you're at that lifetime recovery stage when OCD doesn't bother you anymore. You no longer get intrusive thoughts. You understand how to deal with life's uncertainties and life's imperfections. When stressful situations arise, when somebody in your life isn't acting exactly the way that you want them to, or when you have doubts in your life or a relationships, you respond differently, which has retrained your brain out of the anxiety response.
You're also no longer afraid of OCD coming back.
You understand that you can't predict the future, but no longer being afraid of OCD coming back is actually going to help it to not come back. Remembering that life is uncertain and imperfect, and when you learn how to respond to these situations in a healthy way, you're no longer going to have a inappropriate amount of anxiety and discomfort with life's regular uncertainties and risks.
You are going to feel confident in dealing with life.
You are going to feel confident in dealing with your emotions, and you're going to be very confident with all of the things that previously used to cause you a lot of discomfort. This all comes in learning - what's going on in the brain and why you're experiencing so much discomfort right now and learning how to respond differently. When you take the time to do both of those and you take the time to get yourself to that recovery stage, you will eventually experience all of the things that I just talked about.
How do I get to The Lifetime Recovery Stage?
You need to learn and stop all compulsions. A lot of us know what SOME of our compulsions are, but most people only know about half of them, the most common ones. Compulsions are sneaky! If you don't understand your compulsions, you're going to keep doing them, and each time you do a compulsion, it feeds the OCD cycle! A lot of people can't imagine stopping them, but you can and may need help to do so. You're going to reduce your compulsions little by little over time. In my programs, I help you identify all of them and stop them completely over time.
Look at ERP and the other recovery skills as a way of life.
You make the recovery skills lifetime habits, not just something that you do today and then you quit doing when you feel better. It's no different than our physical health. If I eat healthy today and I exercise, I'm going to get results and I'm going to look and feel better. But if I stop doing those things, my body is going to revert back to not looking and being as healthy because I'm not using the skills that need to keep it that way. Mental health, just like physical health requires regular practice and good healthy habits that you do for the rest of your life.
You stay aware of when life becomes uncertain, or imperfect.
If you stay aware of what your negative coping mechanisms and patterns are, and behavioral patterns that take you back into the OCD cycle or anxiety issues, anxiety cycles, and catch those things really early and apply these new skills versus the old coping mechanisms that weren't helping, you're not going to spiral back down. You keep yourself in that recovery stage because you're aware of your patterns, what works, what doesn't, and you're not letting yourself slide backwards!
You're willing to get help when you feel stuck or you can't do it on your own.
If I was to start struggling with anything in my life, I'm going to try to use the resources and the tools that I have to be able to make that thing better. But if it's not working with what I currently have and know, then I'm going to reach out and find somebody who has the experience to help me. Someone has accomplished that so that they can help me get to where I want to be. Because we all need help! Sometimes we just don't have the knowledge or the tools or the support to get to where we want to be on our own, so we reach out for help. You wouldn't be where you're at today without school or college or parents, or friends or all the ways that you have learned how to get where you're at today. So doing it on your own. If it's working wonderful. Some people can do that, a lot of people can't. So reaching out for help when you need it is going to help you so much.
Just remember, ERP always works when it's done properly. I've never seen it not work, so if it's not working for you for some reason, there is probably a little tweak that you need to figure out how to do in order to get it to work. It's usually a really quick solution. You just have to find somebody who can help teach you what you're doing wrong, make that tweak and it's going to start working for you.
You too can live a life free of OCD. You can get to that lifetime recovery stage like I have, where there is no OCD, there are no intrusive thoughts. Everything is essentially turned back to a normal level, which means you may have a little bit of anxiety from time to time about something in your life that's really uncertain, or you may be unsure about certain decisions, but you don't stay stuck in those places. You make a decision, you move on. You feel confident, you're able to eliminate anxiety from your life. You no longer get caught back up in those cycles of doubt and needing certainty and needing perfection. And you're happy! You're happy with yourself, you're happy in your life, you're happy in your relationships, and I promise you, you can all get there!
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