Obsessive or compulsive?

An obsession is a persistent idea or impulse that continually returns into consciousness, often associated with anxiety and sometimes with distress. It is a condition of intrusive and recurring thoughts.

Door handleA compulsion involves not thoughts but actions. It is a strong, often irresistible, impulse to perform an act. That act may be one that is irrational or even seems contrary to free will.

There are times when someone can be troubled by perfectionism, indecision, over-conscientiousness, concern with detail, rigidity, and inhibition. When a person is affected by a neurosis characterized by persistent intrusion of unwanted thoughts (The obsessions) or the performance of actions that they cannot stop (These are the compulsions) it is often termed obsessive-compulsive disorder or OCD.

Checking the doorOCD is associated with a tendency – an increasing tendency, often – to dwell upon the unwanted, recurring thoughts and to perform repetitious rituals, especially as a defence against the anxiety of inner conflict


What is OCD?

And how can hypnotherapy help?

OCD is a combination of obsessive, recurring thoughts and a compulsive, often irresistible urge to perform an action – an uncontrollable behaviour, in fact. Inability to perform the action – even an attempt to avoid doing it – can lead to distressing thoughts and consequent physical symptoms.

Hypnotherapy is used to treat the beliefs that lead to or perpetuate OCD symptoms. Often those with OCD feel that the condition is controlling their actions, their lives and themselves. Hypnotherapy offers a psychological treatment which places the client back in control.

Hypnotherapy can help change compulsive behaviour and focus on the thoughts and beliefs that underlie obsession.

Many people do say they are controlled by OCD: they live to act compulsively. Hypnotherapy can promote a wonderful achievement of control over behaviour. It can also be very effective with the recurring, obsessive thoughts that can be so distressing. Therapy will provide an opportunity to separate and understand what you think could be true (The power has been left on, the door unlocked or the tap running, for instance) and what is Switchactually the case: power off and safe; door locked and house secure; water is not running.

Hypnotherapy can provide benefits at two levels – both by consciously thinking in different ways and through new or changed feelings and emotions in the subconscious domain.


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