This is an interesting topic for me. Magical thinking seems to have different meanings depending on the context. It can be repetitiveness in OCD, feeling like you have to do something ‘x’ amount of times or ‘y’ won’t happen. It can be thinking that ‘x’ will happen, so you have to do ‘y’ over and over again to prevent it. When in reality, it’s irrational to stress over these actions. Unfortunately, the brain of someone with OCD makes it difficult, if not impossible to stop these thoughts and actions.
I do have a lot of magical thinking. I’m aware of those thoughts, even as they cruise through my head on a regular basis. Just being aware of how my brain behaves has helped this a lot. I view my magical thinking as woven within many of my obsessions.
Before I had knowledge of what was happening, and how it was happening, magical thinking was a big part of my daily life. From checking to more checking. Usually revolving around my safety. The difference between then and now, is that I don’t let those thoughts control me.
Over ten years ago, I had a lot of obsessions about religion, which I personally classify as magical thinking for myself. I’m not religious, yet I fell into this magical way of thinking about demons.
I became fascinated by demons, and that fascination fell right into the OCD trap. I obsessed over them being around me, being controlled by them. I bought books, studied them, getting prepared for something that never happened. “What if they do exist? I better read up on them.” The difference between this behavior being OCD and not schizophrenia, is that I was aware even then that those thoughts were not rational. They just fell into my head and since I didn’t know I had OCD, I just let them run around saying whatever they wanted. It was like knowing I was thinking about it too much, but being unable to stop it.
As some themes with OCD tend to do, it ran its course. I probably became hyper focused on something else and the demons just took a backseat. I look back on this time of my life and think it was all ironic, like my head was trying to tell me something was wrong.
When I realized I had OCD, my actual demons were put in the spotlight. The demons called obsessions and compulsions. The thoughts that caused so much grief. I started focusing on those instead, and it made a world of difference.