Anxiety is a natural human emotion that everyone experiences. However, some people experience a nearly constant level of high anxiety, which makes it challenging to enjoy life. OCD is a type of anxiety; people have unwanted thoughts that cause them to feel highly anxious and then perform certain rituals (also known as compulsions) to try to reduce the anxiety.
Often times when people feel anxious they try to do whatever they can to make their anxiety go away. It is common for loved ones to give advice such as “don’t worry about that,” “it’s okay, that would never happen,” or “try thinking of more happy thoughts instead.” While these approaches are well intentioned, with anxiety/OCD, they unfortunately in the long term do not work. The reason they are not effective is because the underlying component of anxiety/OCD has to do with people’s difficulty tolerating doubt and uncertainty. Even though the person knows the chance of their scary thoughts happening in real life is either impossible or incredibly unlikely, the thought of “but what if it could?” always returns. That is why the logical/reasoning part of the mind cannot overpower the emotional part of the mind. If reassurance and trying to rationalize with the anxiety/OCD is not the answer, then what is?
This workshop is designed to comprehensively answer that question. The key components of the workshop include the importance of:
Exposure, also referred to as exposure and response/ritual prevention, is the first-line treatment recommendation for anxiety/OCD. Exposures help people learn how to face their fears in a structured, supportive, and empowering way.
Defusion is a term from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), which is a type of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Defusion helps people learn to see their thoughts as thoughts. It is a powerful tool to help people learn to be okay with their thoughts rather than to get stuck in the trap of trying to get rid of them.
Unfortunately we live in a society that often makes people feel shame/embarrassment for their anxiety/OCD worries. Self-compassion helps people normalize and validate their emotions, and also learn to be kind to themselves and their struggles.
Mindfulness is an approach that helps people to be more aware of the current moment and therefore learn to live in the present, rather than getting lost in one’s thoughts. A mindfulness mindset consists of attributes such as being non-judgmental, objective, appreciative, and curious.
The aim of this workshop is to provide parents with a strong understanding of how anxiety/OCD works and specific strategies that parents can use with their child to help them work through and not around their worries. To create an individualized and supportive environment the workshop registration slots are limited to a maximum of ten. In addition, prior to the workshop, parents will be asked to complete a brief survey, so that specific questions/needs can be integrated within the workshop.
The workshop presenter is Kimberly Glazier Leonte, PhD. Kimberly is an OCD specialist, who previously worked at McLean’s OCD residential treatment facility, and Roger Memorial Hospital’s OCD residential, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs. She provides continuing education workshops to help educate therapists on the assessment and treatment of OCD/anxiety. For further background information on Kimberly please click here.
The workshop is conducted on selected Saturday mornings. If you have any questions and/or are interested in attending the workshop please contact Kim at: email@example.com or 978.270.8925.