There is more to compulsions than meets the eye
Professor Christine Purdon, PhD., C. Psych.
What do we really know about compulsions? Surprising little, because there have been almost no systematic studies of the phenomenology of compulsions. Interesting findings emerge when we ask people detailed questions about their compulsions as they are being performed. Using experimental, diary, and interview methods, we have explored such factors as how people with OCD frame the goal of their compulsions, what causes them to repeat the compulsion within an episode, and how they make the decision to terminate the compulsion. These data may help us understand the persistence of compulsions, and have implications for treatment that align well with current evidence-based approaches.