OCD and Reading

by Matt B. on December 12, 2014

My dad once told me that I’m the best-read person he knows. I was flattered, but something about the description rang false. He meant: you’ve read a heck of a lot of books. I thought: yes, but I haven’t necessarily read them well.

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The SAT and OCD

by Matt B. on December 5, 2014

I teach SAT to pay the bills. Over the past few months, I’ve learned a lot about how the test works and what it expects of students. In particular, it represents the English language as a set of universal and inviolable rules.

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Bill Brenner writes one of the most well-regarded OCD blogs on the web. In this episode, Bill takes us on his journey through OCD, overeating, and a twelve-step recovery program. Also discussed: Traci Foust, Lou Reed, Jim Morrison, and finding the most interesting parts of ourselves within the pain.

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Causes and Catalysts

by Matt B. on December 1, 2014

In his book Antifragile, Nassim Nicholas Taleb argues that irresponsible bankers and their mortgage-backed Ponzi schemes didn’t cause the 2008 financial crisis. Instead, their shenanigans were only the catalyst – the straw that broke the camel’s back.

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For me, the hardest thing about OCD is the sense that I’m doing this to myself – that it’s my fault that I just spent five hours thinking about whether I subtly (and almost painlessly) fractured my pinky finger. That all of that nausea, despair, and loneliness was self-inflicted.

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Unsolicited Advice

November 16, 2014

OCD isn’t complicated. That probably sounds strange, given that I’ve devoted essay after essay to the many facets of this fucker. But it isn’t – it’s actually fairly straightforward.

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What OCD Has Taught Me About Buddhism (and Vice Versa)

November 15, 2014

A condensed version of this essay appears in Shambhala Sun. In the first of the Lotus Sutra allegories, a man must convince his children to put aside their toys in order to escape a burning house. To do so, the man contrives an even more tempting set of playthings – the three ‘chariots’ of the […]

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