Breaking the Habit of Reassurance

Anyone with OCD or anxiety knows just how intense their thoughts can be. It can seem impossible to think about anything else in those moments, especially during a full-blown panic attack. After months of desperately reaching out to my husband for help, we both realized a hard truth: nothing he could say would make a difference. Sure, it helped momentarily, but I always went back for more. This is a common issue among OCD sufferers. We like to seek reassurance from our friends and family, only to find that it leaves us wanting even more the next time. It’s a vicious cycle that can add to the stress of OCD.

Breaking the Habit

My husband came up with a game plan that I can put into action even when he’s not around. We knew that during the times that I am physically alone, I can still talk to God. My husband carefully chose quotes and “I am” statements that really pack a punch. He then created printouts that we have placed on the refrigerator. These words have become a powerful reminder that I CAN control my thoughts. The more that I read these statements, the more believable they become. I am gradually learning how to comfort myself in times of need. Rather than needing to constantly hear my husband’s reassurance, I can turn to God and my own strength to overcome those moments of panic.

So Does It Work?

To put it simply, yes! But I would be lying if I said it is always easy. When we first tried this new system, I found myself still running to my husband out of habit. Then, guilt would creep in since I forgot the new game plan. I could easily beat myself up every time I reach out for reassurance, but who needs that extra guilt and frustration? Instead, I like to see it as an ongoing process of learning to trust myself rather than the lies of OCD. And when I still need reassurance, I can turn to the truths that God has promised us.


  • “In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.” -Philippians 4: 5-6 WEB
  • God has created me to be victorious
  • I am blessed, I am strong, I am victorious
  • I can control my thoughts. I can control my mind
  • OCD will not win

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