I had a bad intrusive thought moment yesterday. I stumbled into a trigger, of course, and I was fine until my OCD picked up on the fact that it was a trigger. I was immediately dragged into intrusive thought hell. I clawed and scraped to hold onto the the edge of reality, I was desperately practicing my CBT strategies when a funny thought popped into my head. It dawned on me that my OCD never goes away, even when I feel fine. It's always there, waiting for me to let my guard down. Then it dawned on me, my OCD is just like Cato from the Pink Panther movies.
If you're too young to have seen, or possibly even know what they are, the Pink Panther movies are comedies about a bumbling French police inspector, Clouseau, played by peter Sellers. One of the recurring gags is that he's instructed his servant Cato to attack him when he least expects it to help keep him on his toes. At least once per movie, Cato does this and the most incompetently hilarious battle ensues.
It dawned on me that as miserable as I feel with intrusive thoughts, that my relationship with OCD is similar to to Clouseau vs. Cato. Whenever I'm at my most vulnerable and unsuspecting, that's when OCD loves to strike.
One of my strategies is to find ways to treat my OCD humorously. If I can find a way to think about it as comic, despite the horror show in my head, it helps take away a little of its power. Any advantage I can get, I'll take.
Try it. The next time your intrusive thoughts are getting the better of you, watch this clip and think, "hey OCD, you're just Cato."
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