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henzep 03-02-2014 07:42 AM

Bacopa - how to manage fatigue and what im learning about my OCD of 17 yrs

I have been taking Bacopa on and off for a few years to help with OCD issues. I would give it up only because it made me lethargic, only to take it up again to help with anxiety. It seemed like a bad compromise each time and so I decided to tackle the anxiety first. After a lot of mindful effort, I am now finally living without compulsive behavior after over 17 years (I am 28 now), and I have decided to try Bacopa again. I have been taking 2 capsules of Himalaya, twice daily for the past week, and it has gone well so far. I just wanted to share some of the ways I am dealing with the fatigue the herb causes and some of the things I am learning about the disorder that used to plague me.

I think the herb gives a leg up, only if you do the leg work. I think it is working better this time around because I know how to manage myself better. I had to get rid of the compulsions first, and understand the root of the problem. I had severe issues with social anxiety which compelled me to undertake compulsions. Once I got rid of the compulsions, the herb put me in a mindful place to investigate the mental habits clearly. I am listing some of the things I have learned:

1. I had a bad mental habit of "reliving" the past, or "projecting" a situation, or future, with regards to my social problems. Indulging in these scenarios, was in one form or another, stimulating, and repetitive, almost hallucinatory. I think as bacopa seems to regulate dopamine, these habits have stopped being as frequent and overwhelming. They are not addictive so to speak anymore. I think this "process" was essentially part of my "default brain network". It became entrenched in my daily thinking. As bacopa put me in a mindful place, I was able to then investigate the cause of these habits and understand myself better. I have had to make some type of philosophical logic part of my character now to not take part in these elaborations and Bacopa has made me trust myself more.

2. I stopped meditating, or atleast understood it better. I had created a division in my consciousness whereby I was literally censoring thoughts, or trying to watch them like a tyrannical supervisor. It made no sense, because who is watching who? I cannot possibly have two people in my head, one who is mindful, and another, who is mindless. Doing so allowed me to trust my own voice and thoughts. And even start enjoying myself. Sometimes I feel like a little kid being silly in an empty theater with no rules. It helps me to feel secure in my own skin, and bacopa has given me the confidence to be myself. That it helps with word recall, only makes my narrative richer. Self-talk apparently helps with regulating emotions as well, and practicing it regularly is helping me to reprogram myself. The philosophical logic has helped me to shape this narrative as well.

3. I am always learning something or the other. It's important to not just occupy yourself, but to figure out what the hell to do with my life now and work hard for it.

Some of the ways I am dealing with the fatigue are as follows:

1. Over the past week, the fatigue has faded steadily. However, I do need to take some extra steps. I usually take Bacopa with milk and guavas. Not sure if the milk is helping but the guavas have a lot of vitamin C (100 grams only has 400% RDA) which definitely uplifts mood. I take it when I wake up, and then later again in the evening. I usually exercise for 30 mins after waking up, but I have not since I started this regimen one week ago only because exercise makes things better anyway. I think exercising will also be a good way to overcome the fatigue, and I am looking forward to it. I also eat some probiotic yogurt now, which is probably good for the long run.

2. I fixed my posture. I had forward head, round shoulders, etc. It improved breathing from my diaphragm and also helped with my sleeping. I think forward head posture contributes to apnea. I also use a mouthguard at night just to be safe.

3. I take fish oil for breakfast. It helps uplift mood as well. Barleans ultra epa-dha is amazing.

4. A cup of coffee usually before working out, to help me get off my ***. I have been taking 2-3 cups over the past week, which definitely doesn't help with mood in the long run. It ruins sleep as well, which is crucial.

5. I eat well, and I eat at home. Anything stimulating for anxiety disorders, like MSG, even whey protein, is bad.

I hope this is helpful to someone as it is helpful just writing about it. Thanks for reading.

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