Have you ever wondered why some people bite their nails, pull their hair out, pick at skin or feel compelled to continue with habits that range from mildly annoying or embarrassing to being seriously detrimental to their health? Why do these issues affect some people and not others? Have you had a diagnosis of Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)? Or, do you simply need to control habits that are intrusive, annoying or just plain embarrassing? After all, however mild or severe your symptoms, they can certainly cause a great deal of distress, fear, guilt, shame and embarrassment.
As the symptoms progress, you may have even come to feel socially awkward or excluded or feel the loneliness that comes with knowing that other people ‘just don’t get it’. This can lead to vicious cycles, perhaps to an escalation of the problem, multiple symptoms and ultimately to despair.
Whatever answers you gave to the questions in the first paragraph, you will be relieved to hear that you can learn to manage and even overcome altogether these compulsive behaviours using the very latest brain-based and researched techniques. These techniques employ a combination of psychotherapy, hypnosis, and deep relaxation called Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT).
What’s more, this is a comparatively quick course of treatment, and we expect to see you for around 4 to 12 sessions depending on what you want to achieve. Everybody is different, and we work together to uncover the lasting changes that you are ready to make.
Clients who have experienced this form of therapy have reported that it less anxiety-inducing than some other forms of therapy that they have attended previously. For many, this is because the patterns of ‘work’ that we engage in are fairly structured, direct and predictable. These qualities make this form of therapy particularly conducive to the treatment of OCD or OCD- like symptoms and habits.
Now, let’s get back to the problem for a minute or two. Some of the most up to date research has shown how intricately linked our motor activity is to our ‘mental’ functioning. In John Ratey’s book ‘A user’s guide to the brain’ he explains that these powerful links between motor function ( what our skeletal-muscular systems do) and ‘mental’ functioning are now being found in some classic conditions such as Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and Tourette’s syndrome and also in some seemingly unlikely presentations such as rheumatic fever and even toe walking! Fascinating stuff!
Repetition plays a huge part in the process of maintaining these symptoms relating to the OCD spectrum however mild or extreme. What we have done before becomes embedded, and we are compelled to repeat behaviours however detrimental they may be to our functioning.
The good news is that repetition can also be extremely effective in the mastery over these negative symptoms. Thanks to the discovery of neuroplasticity in the early ‘90’s we can now be certain that these patterns can be successfully managed, controlled and even eliminated altogether.
There are many fascinating discoveries ready for us to explore in our therapy sessions.
One concept that I can share with you now, is that brain-based research has revealed that for us to ‘feel’ safe the brain will look to repeat patterns of experiences that have ensured our survival in the past. If biting your nails, or making sure all the labels are facing the same way in the cupboard have supported your ongoing survival then you are programmed to repeat these experiences and possibly excessively.
Understanding these internal processes linked to the brain is so important in embedding new patterns that can eventually help you to control or even eliminate these negative behaviours altogether.
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy does what it says on the tin. Finds the reasons, then focuses on the answers. Unlike some other therapies, in the Solution-Focused Brief Therapy model, we will not dwell on the reasons or catalysts for such behaviours, the therapy works quickly to resolve these issues wherever possible.
You may or may not be taking medication. If you are, it is important that you continue to follow the advice of your GP or Clinician. This will be discussed in your, no-obligation Initial Consultation. Solution-Focused Brief Therapy with Hypnosis can be used in conjunction with your prescribed medication as a complementary therapeutic course of treatment. For those who are not on medication, it may be the only form of treatment you need in learning to overcome your OCD or OCD related symptoms and behaviours.
Learn how we can break free of negative cycles of behaviour and begin to form new patterns and neural pathways today!
Michelle Morris JULY 2020