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  • Matthew Frank
    Matthew Frank

    Overcoming an Obsession: Breaking Through Mental Blocks in Minutes by Replacing Thoughts

    An obsession can be one of the most debilitating states of being. It can cause a person to become so narrowly focused on one thought or object that it interferes with every aspect of their life. When asked what an obsession is, names such as love, attention, or even food often arise. But an obsession can be anything from a fear of rocks to a fear of social situations.

    For some, the inability to break through the mental block created by an obsession can be paralyzing. Those who suffer from this completely understand how consumed their thoughts become. Even when faced with logical and rational responses, the obsession still persists. Many feel helpless and caught in their own personal prison.

    Many experts believe that replacing the intrusive thoughts with something more calming or (even fun) is a key part of overcoming an obsession. Much like a light switching on, the mind can be reprogrammed to enjoy life and move through tasks.

    What advice do you offer for those struggling with an obsession?

    The best advice for anyone struggling to break through an obsession is to replace undesirable thoughts with either an affirmation or a positive distraction. This can be done in as little as five minutes a day.

    Start by first acknowledging and accepting the obsessive thoughts and feelings, without becoming overwhelmed by them. This recognition can help to release some of the pressure and allow room for positivity. Then, identify any triggers that set off the obsessive thought patterns and actively avoid those situations if possible. Once a safe space is created, then the next step is to replace the obsessive thoughts with something more beneficial.

    This replacement can come in the form of affirmations or positive distractions. Affirmations focus on rewiring your brain to accept positive new thoughts; this could include phrases such as “I am capable and strong” and “I deserve peace and happiness”. Positive distractions are activities that bring joy and take your mind away from the obsessive thoughts; this could range from listening to music, going for a walk, or writing in a journal. Allow yourself this five minutes of direct distraction each day and watch as what was once an obsession fades away.

    Many people shy away from replacements because they feel guilty or ashamed. It is important to remember that it is okay to want to feel better and it is okay to prioritize mental health. The best thing to say instead of feeling guilty is “It is ok for me to take care of myself.”

    If obsessive thoughts are still persisting after a few weeks out of routine changes, it could be beneficial to seek professional help. There are many options for therapy, ranging from support groups to one-on-one sessions. With the help of a qualified therapist, a personalized plan can be created that specifically meets the needs of the individual.

    No matter what path is chosen to overcome an obsession, it is important to remember what is true: You are complete on your own and these obsessive thoughts should not define your worth. Be patient with yourself and take time to reflect on what is best for you. Breaking through these mental blocks may not happen overnight, but with dedication and perseverance it can become a possibility.

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