SoCal OCD Conference

Are you interested in learning more about OCD either for yourself or for a family member? You may be interested in attending the OCD Southern California Annual Conference. This conference is unique because it was developed both for professionals and for those affected by OCD. It’s a wonderful chance to get questions answered and learn…

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Thinking about thinking: Personalization

                                Oftentimes for people who are anxious, when something doesn’t go just the way they intended, the thought that follows is “What did I do wrong?” In personalization, the thoughts are similar:  “What did I do to offend that person? …

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Breaking the Anxiety Cycle: Changing Behavior

                          Changing behaviors is all about noticing what you tend to do in anxiety provoking situations and learning to do something different. The more you can learn to tolerate anxiety provoking situations without avoiding or running from them, the less anxious you’ll be.…

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Breaking the Anxiety Cycle: Changing Thoughts

  To change your thoughts, you need to identify automatic thoughts and core beliefs. An automatic thought is what you say or think automatically like “that bee is going to sting me”. That thought alone doesn’t inevitably lead to anxious feelings and avoidance behaviors. You need to break your thought down and figure out what…

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Breaking the Anxiety Cycle

                                In a previous post we talked about the 3-Component Model which explains how your thoughts-feelings-behaviors work together to increase anxiety. The next few posts are about actively addressing the three components to help lessen anxiety. That means going all…

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Emetophobia: Fear of Vomit or Vomiting

                          It’s flu season, which means for us it’s also emetophobia season.  Typically around this time is when we see an influx of patients who have a fear of vomiting.  Often it’s school-aged kids, but not infrequently we have adults with this issue…

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It’s the holidays! Why am I anxious?

                          Every year around this time my family looks forward to Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s, celebrating time with family and friends, the birth of Christ, and the hope associated with the beginning of a new year. While November through January are often…

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Thinking about Thinking: Mind Reading

                            “I just know he hates me.” “They all think I’m an idiot.” “She’s just doing that because she feels sorry for me, not because we’re friends.” “He using me because he thinks I have money.” When we examine metacognitions, one we…

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Thinking about Thinking: Emotional Reasoning

                          As we continue thinking about thinking, let’s examine emotional reasoning: “Thinking something must be true because you “feel” (actually believe) it so strongly, ignoring or discounting evidence to the contrary.” This is a common thinking pattern we often see with phobias.  For…

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Thinking about Thinking: Overview

                            In the next few blogs, we’re going to examine a few cognitive approaches that people often utilize but are actually detrimental to their lives.  Here’s a few examples of these ways of thinking: “I never do anything right, and even if…

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My Anxiety is on Autopilot

You’ve probably had the experience of hopping in your car and suddenly you are at home without realizing how you got there. We call this autopilot and it’s kind of a surreal feeling. Rather than taking the autopilot route home could you have: evaluated traffic for a more efficient route? observed the scenery along your…

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Intentional use of Relaxation

Before we ease into relaxation mode, lets recap some basic anxiety information. When you feel anxious, it often means there is a perceived danger which leads to a  thought/feeling/behavior cycle known as the “3-Component Model”. Relaxation techniques are tools, not solutions Relaxation affects the feeling component (physical or emotional). Remember that relaxation is not a…

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Relaxation: Are you doing it wrong?

Just relax. It’s one of those mantras a lot of people with anxiety tell themselves, but is that always the best move? And does it work? If you experience anxiety, you likely perceive things as more dangerous (physically, emotionally, and/or mentally) than the average person. This causes your fight or flight system may “turn on”…

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Three Components Model of Anxiety

When you feel anxious it often means that there is a something in your environment that seems dangerous. That something (e.g., object, person, thought, or future event) is called a trigger. Triggers are connected to anxiety, but do not cause anxiety.  We know it is not causal because not everyone feels anxious when experiencing the…

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Worrying: Let it go, let it go…

I worry so much, I worry about my worrying. It sounds ironic, right? But for those who struggle with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), this is likely a familiar sentiment. GAD is often marked by: • Worrying even when everything is going well • When one ‘crisis’ is over, another appears • Because of the worry,…

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Are you an Anxious Christian?

How often have others told you “If you truly believe that God is in control, then you don’t need to worry”? How many times have you re-read Matthew 6: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life…”? And after these experiences how often do you feel like a failure by not living up…

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The 24th Annual OCD Conference

  Dr. Hsia will be speaking at the International Obsessive Compulsive Foundation conference in San Francisco this July, 2017. He will be on a panel with several other distinguished clinicians and researchers, discussing how OCD treatments can and need to be adapted to better fit diverse populations. As Dr. Hsia has a significant background in…

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3 Things you Should Know About Panic Disorder

1.     You’re not actually going to pass out, have a heart attack or go crazy – it just feels that way. The hallmark of panic disorder is strong physical sensations that may feel like one is having a serious physical problem, such as a heart attack. Often, because of these sensations, people avoid places where…

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The Basics of School Refusal

Getting through school refusal

With the beginning of a new school year, the OC Anxiety Center has seen more children with school refusal come in through our doors. “School refusal” is a general term with a myriad of causes. Is it a fear of embarrassing oneself in front of others, a dislike of academics, a bully at school, or panic disorder? These are just a few possible causes for …

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