What’s the best way to beat OCD? Therapy? Medication? Supplements? Meditation?

It’s easy to get into a debate about the best way to solve the problem of any mental illness. You could get into the exact same debate over something like obesity–some will claim beating it’s all about a strict diet without gluten, refined sugars, or caffeine and alcohol; others will insist the focus should be on accepting bodies, not changing them; others will swear by surgery; others will do intensive programs and then swing back to their old ways after the program is done and they’ll say the program doesn’t work; others will encounter poverty and education issues that get in the way; others will blame genes; others will say it’s chronic and a lifelong battle; others won’t engage in the debate and they’ll just focus on getting into great shape and engaging in dialogue around how to get into great shape, and bringing supports into their life to keep moving towards their fitness goals.

I definitely prefer the last category. If you want to reach your fitness goals, focus on them. What do you need to do every day to succeed with your mental fitness goals?

Focusing on the best way to beat OCD is like focusing on the best way not to drown. If that’s your goal, you’ll have to keep trying to drown so you can check if you’re succeeding. Instead, learn to swim. Be a great swimmer. Make swimming part of your life. Enjoy it. What are the swimming skills you want to develop?

It’s completely possible to get over OCD but if you measure success by beating OCD, then you’ll need to keep OCD around so you can beat it. I think it’s helpful to shift the focus to where you want to go and what you want to do instead of OCD.

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