This Piece of Placeholder Content labels Obsessive Thoughts Pure-O
All humans experience unwanted thoughts. However, non-clinical persons, or those who do not have OCD, are able to easily dismiss the thoughts as uncomfortable, weird, or just something their brain does. What distinguishes Pure-O from a fleeting unwanted thought is the anxiety that becomes affixed to these thoughts which then creates a significant amount of distress to the sufferer. Pure-O sufferers often report that their thoughts make them incredibly anxious and they can’t get them out of their head. Thus, what ignites the symptoms of Pure-O is not the experience of intrusive thoughts but actually one’s reaction to them. The more one dislikes experiencing the intrusive thoughts and tries to repress, control, or fight the thoughts, the greater the frequency of intrusive thoughts one will experience. It is the very act of trying to not to have a bothersome thought that guarantees its resurfacing.Pure-O is rooted in the faulty assumption that humans have control over their thoughts, which we do not. The human brain has evolved to be constantly spinning around, trying to find interesting problems to solve, and to search for threats to our safety or existence. The brain is particularly interested in thoughts that contain uncertainty. When a Pure-O sufferer’s brain lands on a thought or question that is unacceptable to the person having the thought, the fear network of the brain is alerted that something is wrong and needs to be done about it IMMEDIATELY. This fight or flight experience is what causes the sufferer a great deal of distress.
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