My name is Adam Delfiner.
As a young boy I was happy and carefree. My mind was light and my body full of energy. I enjoyed every moment, and life flowed freely. But then, in my teenage years, everything changed.
My mind became heavy, my body felt slow, my thoughts and actions were irrational, and my relationships became strained. These were the side effects of my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, or OCD.
I remember thinking to myself, “I feel like I can’t control myself, like my mind, my thoughts are in control of me. I know what I want. I want to be happy and to be free from this suffering in my head. I just wish that I could be myself and not be the slave to this stuff in my mind.”
Through most of my time with OCD, my obsessions and compulsions concerned themselves mainly with germs.
I was worried that due to some unseen filth on my hands, I would transmit some sickness to my family and friends. I would wash my hands once, dry them, and then feel compelled to wash them again and again, time after time. And as far as drying my hands, I went through box after box of tissues because I felt very uncomfortable using hand towels. Why? Because I knew other people used these hand towels, and I felt like I would again spread some unknown germs to others through these towels.“I was living in an unreal, untrue world, completely separated from the truth of the world.”
My mind was dominated by a sense of dread and even though I had a compelling suspicion that, for instance, washing the soap was not necessary, I felt powerless against the overwhelming disorder in my mind.
Every time I finished washing I would feel a few seconds of relief but inevitably a rush of the same doubts, worries, anxieties, and fears would follow this mocking reprieve. Every bit of relief was a tease to my happiness because these moments only reinforced my compulsions as a break from obsessions. You can imagine how much time I spent in the bathroom everyday.
Because WHAT IF this, WHAT IF that.
The WHAT IFS would riddle my mind, forcing it to check and double check and triple check. How tiring, how laborious.
And how many times did the worries, the fears, the WHAT IFS check out as being valid, being real? ABSOLUTELY NEVER.“I knew I had a problem. I knew I was struggling.”
I remember one day quite well. I finally came out of the bathroom, hands and mind worn down and tired from overuse—my parents asked me to join them in their bedroom. I remember seeing the TV on my right, the Dr. Phil show was playing and he was talking about Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. “Sit down Ad, Mommy and I want to talk to you for a second.”
I knew I had a problem. I knew I was struggling. I knew that they wanted to talk to me about it. And to be honest, it was a great relief because I didn’t want to suffer, but I didn’t seem to have the strength not to.
I guess there was also some feelings of being ashamed or embarrassed by my behavior mainly because it interfered so greatly with the flow of my life and because it didn’t seem that anyone else I knew or came in contact with did the same things or had the same worries. I certainly didn’t understand the mechanics of the disorder I was experiencing. I just knew I was suffering because, well, I was suffering.
So I began a relentless search for relief.
My parents and I began to discuss ways of eliminating this disorder from my life. My first step was therapy. I attended therapy quite regularly for a few years. It had a beneficial impact on my life. However, as time went on I had intense stretches of relapse into the depths of OCD. The relief from therapy alone didn’t seem to be sustainable. Something more was definitely needed. My life remained out of control.“We all want to be happy, healthy, and strong in ourselves without relying on outside influences.”
The next step then was to appeal for medication. As cautiously predicted, this medication had a great affect in the battle in my mind. My mind became clearer. But was it an enduring solution?
Not in the slightest. Why should I need to rely on something outside of myself for happiness? Something was unfulfilling about remaining on medication and in therapy for the rest of my life.
I continued taking medication and attending therapy through my college career at Boston University. From one treatment to the next, my family and I looked everywhere for a more lasting solution. This disintegrated life continued on until finally after years of seeking, my journey reached its fulfillment through the regular practice of Transcendental Meditation.
It was not until I began the regular practice of the Transcendental Meditation technique, that I and no one or nothing else began to take control over my own life. I began to practice the Transcendental Meditation technique regularly and my experiences were nothing short of miraculous.“I literally began to think more clearly and holistically.”
As I continued my practice of Transcendental Meditation my life began to blossom.
Modern neuroscience has revealed that during the practice of Transcendental Meditation there is an increase in brain wave coherence. That is, through Transcendental Meditation the brain begins to work as a whole coherent unit rather than discordant individual parts isolated from one another.
I literally began to think more clearly and holistically. I quickly began to realize the experience of ‘seeing the bigger picture’ in my awareness. Just like a zoom lens expanding to a wide-angle to appreciate the wholeness of life instead of getting caught in the boundaries, lost in the small stuff. I began to attend therapy less and less, eventually stopping completely. And my prescription medication began to taper off until I stopped taking it completely. My regular practice of Transcendental Meditation allowed me to regain control over my life because I began to experience more and more of my own Self, my own life.
I have now found a peace within myself and put OCD behind me.
And having gained valuable experience and insights into the nature of life, myself, and of OCD through Transcendental Meditation, it has become my life’s desire to help others do the same. No one deserves to live life consumed by OCD.
Adam Delfiner hails from Philadelphia, PA and studied communication and advertising at Boston University. He earned an MA and a PhD in Maharishi Vedic Science from Maharishi University of Management, linked right here for your enjoyment.
Adam is pictured here and above with his wife Natalie, their son Gyan, and their pup Cynthia.