Sick and Tired of Intrusive Thoughts! >:(
OK. Imagine you are a giant ship. Directly ahead is the island called "free of Intrusive thoughts". Many ships visit there and enjoy a period of happiness. As they power past you on the high seas, you notice they have the ability to sail straight towards that island. However your rudder is a little damaged so you can't track straight.
The inability to control parts of our thinking has no cure. Eg it's like stopping a dream. Not possible. However, as you pass by that island of "free of Intrusive thoughts" there is other islands called "hobby", "busy", "diversion" and "motivation" and others. While visiting these islands your Intrusive thoughts fade because your mind is occupied. Physical activity over powers thinking.
My Intrusive thoughts got so bad I set up a large jigsaw on a table in a spare room. Every time I thought of my estranged daughter I'd visit that room, do about 10 pieces of the jigsaw and then make a culpa. I was then free of the thoughts for a few days.
Writing can help. I'm into poetry. We have a thread here "poetry corner- post your poems here". I've posted many, I have over 300.
Youtube prem rawat maharaji sunset
And many more of his videos.
Im so sorry you are experiencing this I understand it’s really hard.
I totally understand the “ want” the want to just make these repetitive distressing thoughts stop……….
The intrusive thoughts just seem to be on repeat and they just won’t go away no matter what you do and while these intrusive thoughts are going on inside your mind our internal nervous system is on high alert causing extreme anxiety to these intrusive thoughts.
It’s a horrible vicious cycle that we go through day in and day out.
How do we stop this so we can just relax and enjoy our life?
I understand this because this was me ….. I was plagued with unwanted distressing intrusive thoughts…
I was so distressed by these intrusive thoughts that I couldn’t function properly on a daily basis.
I seeked professional help starting from a gp through to a psychiatrist I was diagnosed with OCD Obsessive Compulsive Disorder ( it’s an anxiety disorder)……
I also did a 8 week therapy it was an intervention into the OCD In this therapy I was given many strategies and tools that I needed to master my OCD it took perseverance and practice to master the skills I was taught.
But now thank you to this therapy I have mastered my OCD and I no longer get caught up in the vicious cycle of OCD.
I can now treat intrusive thoughts as just that a intrusive thought.
Im not a doctor and I can’t diagnose but
I recommend you see your gp and do a mental health plan together.
Please ask me any questions
Just some strategies that you can work on……… it takes practice and perseverance…..
When you have a intrusive thought instead of putting your attention on the thought put your attention on something in the present moment, when your attention takes you back to the intrusive thought redirect your attention to something in the present moment again…. ( it takes practice)
Practice Mundane attention training eg while your washing the dishes how does the water feel? What can you smell? What can you notice in the room? ( really put your attention on these things)
If the thoughts are repeating over and over……. Try to treat them like a song that’s stuck in your head………..
( eventually we no longer notice the song)
Try not to question the thoughts
Try not to analyse the thoughts
Try not to seek reassurance
Try to resist the urge to perform compulsions.
A compulsion can be mental or physical
Physical compulsion s can be trying to push the thoughts away
Reassuring ourselves can be a compulsion
Googling symptoms can be a compulsion
Physical compulsions are things you do physically (like turning the light switch on and off a certain amount of times)..
Mental compulsion can be trying to push the thoughts away….
Meditation is great try to find a meditation for learning to watch your thoughts…..
look for a guided meditation ( there are some on u tube)
hope this helps….. remember it all takes alot of perseverance and practice.
Thank you for continuing to be a part of our online community.
Obstructive, Intrusive, and consuming thoughts are one of the great challenges of life for everyone; though it’s a huge challenge in OCD, Anxiety, ADHD and severe depression especially. So please know that you are not alone - as I am sure so many of our forum members will be able to attest.
One of the truly great teachers in this battle was the late Thich Nhat Hanh. To his students his advice was "thoughts are guests - you open your house; they may pass through the front door, and they may exit the back door: learn not to serve them tea." The challenge of learning that our thoughts are often irrelevant is a big one, and not undertaken lightly. However it is THE challenge: the one that underpins so much else.
It can be very important to see this challenge as an actual physical practice. Whether it be through journaling and drawing; whether it be through meditation and exercise; or even something as simple as laughing at your thoughts in a mirror- taking the power out of your thinking is very much a physical and mental exercise and like all exercise takes practice. For example: Building the bridge - ". I constantly feel like I'm in one place and people are in another" - is the disconnect there because you are different and separated in reality - or is it because of your beliefs about where YOU are?
This is not an easy thing to work through - some of our greatest spiritual and disciplined minds have wrestled with it for years - but the solutions are always the same. not least of those solutions is patience and kindness with yourself.
Remember that if you need that support KFPDW we are right here for you. Call us - 1300 22 4636; start a webchat here: and always keep in touch with your treating professionals.
Hang in there!
@white knight @Sophie_M @Petal22
Hey thanks so much for your replies. What you have all said is fantastic advice and I will be going through it all thoroughly this week and putting it into effect. I really appreciate the support and I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who has been struggling with this. The more advice and information I can get, the more I have at my disposable to try and work out the intrusive thoughts and gain a better mindset for myself. Wish me luck and I wish you all the best and Hope you are doing well. 🙂
Hello KFPDW, some great advice by those above me.
I have OCD and still have intrusive thoughts, but now they don't worry me as I know none of them will happen,I came to this conclusion because years ago one of my thoughts was to hurt my Mum, who I love so dearlyand would never do so, this thought was a real worry for me.
It suddenly stopped as soon as she was admitted into a nursing home which she never wanted, that I realised was all the pain she needed, so my intrusive thought meant absolutely nothing anymore, from then on, I knew that these thoughts were unrealistic and no matter what, they wouldn't ever happen.
Sure I still have them because of this illness but they certainly don't worry me, I push them away and dismiss them.
Happy to help 😊
Just a tip………… don’t try to work out the intrusive thoughts……….
Remember you aren’t your thoughts you are the watcher of your thoughts…..
Meditation can teach you this ….. I highly recommend it….. I believe it go me over the line.
The more meditation you do the more awareness you will gain……….
Remember practice and perseverance……. Will get you a long way….
Some days will be better than others but eventually the good days will out weigh the bad ones the more you practice your skills the better your days will become.
Really practice being in the present moment…..