OCD and Perfectionism

John Neyman Jr
Dr. John is a counselor and therapist to ADHD children and their parents

OCD manifests different types of symptoms and perfectionism is a part of it.

Perfectionism is defined to be as the intense feeling that things must be done just right or that they must be done with all certainty. An example of perfectionism which turns to be unhealthy is the feeling that obsessions and compulsions must be properly executed or that they must be always right. This happens when one believes that if he acts with accordance to his compulsions unwanted events like death of a relative will not make him sad.

Unhealthy perfectionism also frequently occurs in the OCD patient’s checking symptoms.

If one does not perfectly feel that he has closed the doors or unplug the appliances he may tend to go back over and over again and check those. This unhealthy perfectionism also happens when there is a fear of fire because of the thought that the kitchen stove was not put off before leaving the house. This can only worsen the condition of an OCD patient and may result to lowered self confidence and trust.

Unhealthy perfectionism also may result to obsessions. When a thought keeps bothering an individual he may in turn have a keen monitor oh=f his thoughts over and over again which gives him an obsession to it. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder patients usually believe that they have the complete control over their thoughts and compulsions. Without noticing this becomes their obsessions.

There are various tips and recommendations that can help one in avoiding unhealthy perfectionism in OCD. One of the existing therapies that can avoid this type of perfectionism is the Cognitive Behavior Therapy. This helps in restructuring behaviors that can be helpful in assessing and evaluating the symptoms of the OCD patient. The therapy is a good tool for evaluating the beliefs of the OCD patient which are irrational. Another tip in avoiding the unhealthy perfectionism is by learning and or practicing to give up or eliminate control over obsessions and compulsions. An OCD patient must be given ERP or exposure and response therapy. OCD patients are required and asked to be engaged in activities and exercises that may give them the capability to give up and lose their control. Once control over the symptoms is lost the patient will then develop and build self confidence among them. It is also recommended that the patient must have a mindful bearing. This mindfulness is characterized by being a little focused on thoughts.

Believing that an OCD patient has less control over his thoughts, his compulsions and obsessions may as well be reduced including his stress.

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