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THOUGHTS

Scrupulosity: When OCD Targets Your Religious and Moral Values

1.14.15

View original article published in Psych Central here. Whenever Marian was exposed to religious issues, she felt overwhelmed by doubt, guilt and anxiety. She had been steadfast in her devotion since childhood. Lately, though, she’d try to avoid anything or anyone that triggered her spiritual obsessions. Her loved ones were puzzled because her commitment had been extraordinary. Conflicting worries consumed her mind and she was becoming depressed. Marian’s example of scrupulosity is one of many variations a sufferer may have with this type of OCD. Sometimes individuals with scrupulosity aren’t religious but feel hyper-responsible to their moral standards. The fact is that once in a while, religious individuals may experience doubts, guilt, re

Being Grateful Despite Challenges

11.26.14

[View original article published in Psych Central here] There are times when we may feel like we cannot be grateful about anything in our lives. Losing a job or feeling burned out can contribute to one’s negative attitude. Experiencing financial losses or not being able to make ends meet can hurt deeply. Enduring physical or mental health challenges can drive us to feel hopeless. Missing a loved one, seeing one’s child suffer, and relationship difficulties could be additional reasons to feel apathetic. The list can go on, but research shows that it’s possible to change our perspective despite life’s hardships. We can change our brain chemistry toward feeling more at peace with ourselves and become more grateful. Consider the following poin

3 Steps To Take When Life Gets Foggy

10.20.14

 [View original article published in Answers.com here] What is your first thought when you wake up in the morning? “I’m ready to take on the day!” But maybe you had a restless night and couldn’t stop thinking about current problems. Perhaps you wish your day never began. All of us experience difficulties at one point or another, and it has been said that what really matters is how we react to adversity. The advice is that we need to confront our difficult experiences with a positive attitude. When we do, things go smoother. But it is easier said than done! Take Lori for example. She was the oldest child of four, and when she was twelve years old, her mom passed away. She missed her mother, and she and her siblin

Starve the OCD Beast and START Making Changes

10.15.14

Once upon a time a young man was walking through the mountains near his home.  A cute little kitten appeared.  It looked hungry and lost.  He decided to take it home.  He took good care of the kitten, but every time he fed it, it seemed hungrier.  One day he noticed it was eating a mouse.  He realized his kitten was ready for big cat’s food. But the problem continued. The more he fed it, the more the kitten wanted.  One day, a friend came to visit him.  The friend was shocked and said,  “What in the world are you doing with a tiger?”  The young man had gotten so used to living with his pet and its demands that he had not even noticed that it had become a tiger! You may have heard similar stories to illustrate how individuals who comply with

What is OCD? OCD Awareness #OCDWeek 2014

10.14.14

If you aren’t sure what OCD is, watch this short video.  It will enlighten you. Source:  IOCDF.ORG

Trichotillomania and Excoriation Disorder

7.13.14

A friend forwarded me the link to Rebecca  Brown’s videos and journal (Trich Journal).  She is a charming young woman who is very artistic and funny and also suffers from hair pulling and skin picking disorders.  I’ve watched some of her videos since I received her information.  Rebecca is doing an awesome job in helping others understand that they don’t have to feel ashamed of their disorders.  She is helping educate people, but most importantly, with her example, she is helping those that suffer. If you have questions about Trichotillomania and Skin Picking Disorders, please go to the Trichotillomania Learning Center website.  I attended their last conference in April and it was very informative.  Some of the material presented reg

What Can Parents Do When OCD Sneaks In?

7.8.14

[View original article published in Psych Central here] Megan felt miserable. She and her family had relocated in the middle of the school year to another city. She was missing her friends and changes were difficult for her. It seemed the problems began one morning when she was getting ready for school. While washing her hair, she thought she had swallowed some of the shampoo. She wondered if it was toxic. She worried she’d get sick and die. She rinsed her mouth incessantly until she felt safe. “Is it poisonous?” she would ask her mom, every day before taking a shower. Her mom would reassure her that it was harmless. But Megan wasn’t satisfied with the answer. She couldn’t take a chance and took safety measures each time. Soon, her worries

Tim Howard, Soccer, and Tourette Syndrome

7.4.14

Tim Howard has been the talk of the town in the past few days.  His amazing talent defending the US goal against Belgium has earned him that honor.  Even though, the US lost, it was an exhilarating game and Howard showed his athletic abilities.  Even if you are not a soccer fan, you can be inspired by his story. He is a great goal keeper and also has not let Tourette Syndrome get in the way of his passion, goals, and vision in life. What is Tourette Syndrome? This is a neurobehavioral disorder that involves repetitive, stereotypical, and involuntary motor and vocal tics.  The tics may occur many times a day every day or intermittently throughout a period of more than a year.  The onset is before age 18.  It is a disorder with symptoms that

Mindset Family Therapy

Amy Cuddy: Your body language shapes who you are

4.23.14

 A TED talk about “Faking it until you become it!” Amy Cuddy talks about the research that has been done regarding non-verbal cues and interactions we have with others.  She also talks about how our nonverbal expressions, thoughts, feelings and physiology affect us. We know that our minds can change our bodies and she decided to find out if our bodies can change our minds.  Her research confirmed that indeed our bodies can change our minds and our lives in meaningful ways!  She tells about her own personal story when she was 19 years old after a car accident.  This TED talk is very powerful and I usually recommend clients to view it. If you experience social anxiety and doubts about yourself, this talk may greatly benefit you. E

Six Ways to Help Your Perfectionist Child Find Balance

4.1.14

[View original article published in Psych Central here] Four-year-old Max would crumple his paper when his drawing wasn’t perfect. He would start over, and often grow angry and eventually give up. His parents noticed his rigidity, but hoped he would grow out of it. When he was seven, the demands on himself and others were still troubling him and his family. His parents were frustrated. Are your children inflexible? Do they set high standards that overwhelm them? Do they complain of not having friends and feeling isolated? Do they procrastinate often? Do they go from one extreme to the other with certain behaviors, such as being studious and responsible academically to not caring at all? Do they beat themselves up and feel like a failure whe

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A guide to help you find relief and happiness in spite of religious or moral OCD (scrupulosity OCD). Learn more about Annabella Hagen's book.
Imperfectly Good - Book by Annabella Hagen

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