I picture my OCD as something completely separate from me. I think of it as a black dot about the size of my fist. It is not a part of me; it is only in my vicinity, and when it is, it has a horrible influence.
But I have learned that I am stronger than the black dot. I am in charge of it, not the other way around. My OCD/black dot takes itself very seriously, and so it absolutely hates to be belittled. It is also masculine, somehow, someway.
So, when my thoughts start to go to ugly places (these days, this usually only happens at night before I fall asleep), I recognize that my OCD/black dot is in the room with me, and I make it put on a tutu or something else that makes it feel ashamed, and then I give it specific instructions for where it needs to go. I mean this literally. Most nights, I banish my OCD/black dot to the balcony outside my apartment.
It has to listen. (Which still amazes me sometimes.) (P.S. It’s ERP that helped me realize my immense power.)
In fact, sometimes it’s so ashamed of the tutu I force it into, or of any number of strange and childish dot-sized outfits I make it wear, that it doesn’t even want to be on my balcony where others could see it, so it crawls down the block to hide in the nearest doghouse.
Weird. I know. Believe me, I know.
But it works for me.
Do you have any weird methods to keep OCD beneath your heel?
For (lots!) more about OCD and ERP, click here.
Image credit: Josh Rokman