Episode 25: Q&A from August 9, 2021

Episode 25

Q&A on OCD

August 9th, 2021

In this episode of Purely OCD, Kelley and Lauren answer questions from viewers. Let’s get to those questions. But first, a word from your hosts:

Kelley: I so love punching OCD in the face

Lauren: It’s like one of my favorite pastimes actually

Lauren and Kelley start by talking about obsessions, compulsions and the obsessive compulsive cycle in OCD, generally.

Question 1: How can I get out of ruminating?

  1. Recognize you’re ruminating
  2. Build awareness (e.g. through meditation)
  3. Come back to the present moment

Oftentimes you’re going to catch yourself mid-rumination rather than before it starts. That’s totally ok. Congratulate yourself “Good for me! I caught myself!”

Question 2: I’m buying a house and can’t get excited. I keep fixating on the what if questions. Is that common with OCD?

Kelley and Lauren talk about the fact that if a person’s primary concern is with something that many people might have concerns about (e.g. buying a house) then they would likely be more appropriately diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD).

Lauren and Kelley discuss the (somewhat arbitrary) distinctions between OCD and GAD. Side note: They also discuss this in the episode on Mental Health Obsessions.

Kelley and Lauren also talk about the differences between Problem Solving and Rumination. given that the former is useful and the latter is not.

Question 3: How do you approach unwanted images while meditating?

“You just accept the hell out of them! You just are like “Oh look, there’s an image. There it is. There is an image. Ok well, that’s, thank you brain! I’m actually trying to focus on my breath right now, so I’m gonna bring it on back. But thank you.” And the image doesn’t have to go away, it’s just about noticing that the image is there without making it the central point of your attention”

Lauren Rosen, LMFT

Kelley and Lauren talk about how they’ve accepted the presence of upsetting images.

Mindfulness meditation can be very helpful for those with OCD.

Lauren: I have a brain that’s sticky so I notice “Oh wow, this is now an image in my mind …”

Kelley: I love when that happens 

Lauren: Like “wow”

Kelley: I’ll be carrying this for another week or so

Lauren: Welcome aboard passenger. 

Kelley: Have you met the others?

Question 4: Every time someone I love goes out of the house I do these routines and I tell them every possible way they could die because it makes me feel like I’m protecting them from that actually happening. Am I the only one and what can I do?

First off: No, this person is not the only one.

Lauren and Kelley talk about obsessions people have related to the idea that if they don’t do something then something bad will happen. They also discuss concerns people have about feeling guilty if they don’t give all of the disclaimers.

The work is to not confess 

Compulsions are sort of an insurance policy. You know that they’re not likely to be necessary but you do them anyway, just in case

It’s hard to recognize that we really have so little control over much of our lives. We like the idea that we have the ability to control something. It’s containing but then you spend so much time and energy trying to secure certainty when certainty doesn’t exist.

Question 5: Does having thoughts about harming someone mean that you’re a bad person?

There’s no such thing as good or bad thoughts. 


Like what you’ve heard? We’d love to hear your feedback. Head over to your podcast app of choice where you can comment and like the podcast in order to help build our audience and spread awareness about OCD. While you’re there, subscribe so you never miss an episode.

Sign Up for Updates from Us

Subscribe below to receive info on our latest news and episodes

Disclaimer: This information is meant to be general information not unique to any individual. Before following any guidance or advice found on this site or in the Purely OCD Podcast a visitor or listener should always consult with their own licensed healthcare practitioner. The Purely OCD Podcast and Website are not therapy or intended as a replacement for therapy. They are for educational purposes only.

Leave a Reply