Mike Dadson, Clinical Counsellor: On Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Prominent Langley Clinical Counsellor, Dr. Michael (Mike) Dadson, Says Diagnosis, Treatment of OCD Helps Canadians Live More Rewarding Lives

Dr. Michael (Mike) Dadson is a Canadian Certified Clinical Counsellor practising at the Gentle Currents Therapy and Neurofeedback clinic in Langley, British Columbia.

Dr. Dadson treats and diagnoses for the purposes of treatment a wide range of mental health issues, such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and anxiety disorders. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is considered an anxiety disorder and is fairly common, negatively affecting the daily lives of thousands of Canadians. Compulsive behaviour may not meet all the criteria of OCD but can still be problematic for people causing destructive behaviour such as addictions, risky sextual behaviours, gambling problems and financial hardship. People need to know that these challenges can be effectively treated by a competent well-trained therapist.

According to Mike Dadson:

“OCD is one of the most difficult mental health issues that people can have. It is not only an inner state of mind, but it is associated with uncontrollable, repetitive actions that seriously detract from people’s quality of life.”

What Is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)?

According to The American Psychiatric Association:

“Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a disorder in which people have recurring, unwanted thoughts, ideas or sensations (obsessions) that make them feel driven to do something repetitively (compulsions).”

The most common categories of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) are:

  1. Obsession with Contamination | Compulsive Cleaning
  • Most of us have seen the memes on social media with OCD jokes based on one misaligned tile, a small, annoying speck, a painting hung just slightly crookedly. These are all examples of Perfection or Organization-related OCD.
  • While most people have a natural love of symmetry, an OCD sufferer will spend inordinate amounts of time and energy in the alignment of objects, and go as far as to count grains of rice.

2. Obsession with Symmetry / Perfection | Compulsive Organizing, Straightening, Counting

  • Most of us have seen the memes on social media with OCD jokes based on one misaligned tile, a small, annoying speck, a painting hung just slightly crookedly. These are all examples of Perfection or Organization-related OCD.
  • While most people have a natural love of symmetry, an OCD sufferer will spend inordinate amounts of time and energy in the alignment of objects, and go as far as to count grains of rice.

4. Obsession With “Forbidden” Thoughts | Compulsive Rituals, Prayers, Symbolic Actions

  • Many people with OCD are constantly disturbed by unwanted and sometimes immoral, “abhorrent” thoughts which they are unable to stop, causing them anxiety.
  • Symbolic, ritualistic, or religious actions may offer temporary relief from the anxiety, resulting in behaviours such as compulsive praying, mantras, or superstitious rituals.

3. Obsession with Doubt / Harm | Compulsive Checking:

  • People with this type of OCD have an overwhelming fear of making a mistake or causing some disaster and so are driven to compulsive checking.
  • An example of this type of OCD is people who compulsively check that the stove is off, or constantly worry that their door is not locked. They may unlock and re-lock the door a number of times before leaving their homes.

According to HelpGuide:

“Like a needle getting stuck on an old record, OCD causes the brain to get stuck on a particular thought or urge. For example, you may check the stove 20 times to make sure it’s really turned off because you’re terrified of burning down your house, or wash your hands until they’re scrubbed raw for fear of germs. While you don’t derive any sense of pleasure from performing these repetitive behaviors, they may offer some passing relief for the anxiety generated by the obsessive thoughts.”.

Mike Dadson recommends self-inventory for anyone wondering if they should seek treatment for OCD:

“Many of us have mild, moderate and severe obsessions but these may not meet the full criteria of OCD. In order to know if you have a clinical case of OCD you need to seek out a certified, competent, well trained health care provider.  If obsessive thoughts or behaviours have been complicating, hindering or harming your relationship with yourself and others,  you will benefit from an honest, exhaustive self-inventory.

Ask yourself: ‘Are my rituals and compulsions elaborate and involved? What is the content of my anxieties? How “sticky” are my recurring thoughts? Is this affecting my ability to attain my full potential in life?”

Clinical Counselling with Dr. Mike Dadson:

In some ways, and for some people in Canada, life actually is becoming simpler. Many people are driving less, interacting with strangers less – in short, leaving their homes less.

For Canadians with OCD triggers such as locking doors or turning off the stove, their disorder may have become less of a problem due to Covid19 lockdowns, since restrictions have meant they are leaving their homes less often.

Others with different OCD triggers, such as fear of contamination and disease, daily life may have become more terrifying with the very real threat of a new virus impacting public health and taking lives. On the other hand, a trip to any local grocery store for most Canadians at this time involves many hygiene measures which, prior to 2020, would seem tailored to an OCD sufferer’s preferences.

Dr. Michael Dadson is committed to helping his OCD patients adapt to our “new normal,” as their challenges are specific to the condition and in many ways are unlike the (also very real) challenges faced by those who do not suffer with the condition.

5 Links for Further Reading to Learn More about OCDAPA Dictionary of Psychology

1. APA Dictionary of Psychology

2. Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic

3. What Are the 4 Types of OCD? – MedCircle

4. NIMH » Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

5. What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder?

Dr. Mike Dadson’s clinic Gentle Currents Counselling and Neurofeedback is currently open for in-person clinical counselling and Neurotherapy treatments. Secure online counselling sessions are also available by appointment in case you prefer to stay at home. 

GentleCurrentsTherapy.com Home Page Screenshot - Clinical Counselling office of Dr. Mike Dadson in Langley, BC Canada

Dr. Michael Dadson, Ph.D. 

Jeanette Dadson, Neurofeedback Therapist

Gentle Currents

Counselling and Neurofeedback

Belmont Centre

#109 20103 40th Avenue

Langley BC, V3A 2W3

 Click here for directions

Call/Text: (778) 554-0174

Finding a Clinical Counsellor in BC

If you are looking for a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC), in BC, follow the link to my profile and list of academic works and publications.

Clinical Counsellor

Photo: Nik Shuliahin

Dr. Michael Dadson (Mike Dadson) has been a BCACC member of the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors (BCACC), since 2000.

Dr. Mike Dadson believes in being compassionately present with others and using fine tuned clinical skills helps create the space and place necessary for growth. Dr. Dadson states “I have a deep belief in humanity’s capacity to find real life resolutions to injuries and challenges”. Research has shown that this ability occurs when we have access to understanding, support, respect and skilled therapeutic interventions.

To learn more about Dr. Michael Dadson’s counselling practice and philosophy, here is a link to a few videos on common counselling issues..

The Most Important Leadership Skill

According to recent research, empathy is the most important leadership skill.

Photo: Nick Fewings

Stress Increase

With the pandemic becoming a long haul issue in our day to day lives, the added stressors either at home with your relationship or children, friends, colleagues or any combination of these, brings a heightened need for empathy in the workplace.

Empathy Affects Positivity

There is a delicate balance in the workplace of various skills for leaders to inspire employees, support their happiness, and maximize engagement and employee performance. However, empathy now ranks at the top of leadership qualities. While we have known for many decades empathy is important in our lives and for those around us, new research demonstrates added benefits in the workplace. Research indicates empathy is also important for employee retention and innovation.

The Impact of Empathy in the Workplace

In a new study, empathy is shown to “contribute to positive experiences for individuals and teams”. In the new study conducted by Catalyst empathy proves to be highly beneficial in many areas outlined in a recent Forbes article.

To learn about my counselling practice, follow this link to my YouTube channel.

#Mikedadson #Langley #counselling


What can I learn in relationship counselling?

Entering into cohabitation or a long term, committed relationship means merging your life with another person. Being committed to understanding a partner’s point of view can be a challenge at times. People are increasingly facing marriage and relationship issues or breakdowns, especially in the trying times of today. Dr. Michael Dadson (Mike Dadson) believes it’s “important for couples to know they can acquire skills to understanding a partner, and reigniting what initially brought them together.”

To read more about relationship and couples counselling, follow the link below.


Relationship and Couples Counselling

I Will Never Forget That I Could Have Lived With People Who Loved Me

This is a great story as to why foster parents are so badly needed, everywhere. Making the difference in the life of a child is so rewarding and impacts not only their world, but the world around them for years to come.


When I was 15, an usher at my church offered to become my foster parent. Hers was one of the best foster homes I lived in. But she wanted a son. It was more than I was able to give.

I had been in foster care since I was 11 months old because of my mother’s drug addiction and poverty. Adopted at age 9 by a racist and abusive woman, I was locked out of the house at age 13. For two years, I couch surfed with friends, then entered foster care again. I was told I was loved, that I was a part of a family, yet I would always find myself moved to a new placement, with all my stuff in a trash bag.

To Read more on this story, follow this link.

#Michaeldadson #Langley #counselling

Putting Your Mental Health First

There is no doubt Simone Biles decision to withdraw from Olympic events caused a wave across media platforms and it is highlighting the need for many conversations around abuse, enablers, mental health awareness and self care.

Elite athletes and celebrities are the leading voices for overdue conversations about abuse and mental health, making headlines in Time, The Wall St. Journal, ESPN, Vogue, and the New York Times.

Simone Biles withdrew from the individual all-around competition at the Tokyo Games to focus on her mental well-being. The decision came after Biles also removed herself from the team final following one rotation, on vault. Biles cited her mental health as the reason when speaking to the media following the competition.

Andrea Orris, who coached and competed at Illinois State and trained with Carly Patterson and Nastia Liukin at the World Olympic Gymnastics Academy stated, “It makes me so frustrated to see comments about Simone not being mentally tough enough or quitting on her team. For non-gymnasts, the fact that she balked mid-air and accidentally did a 1.5 on her first vault instead of a 2.5 is a big deal. It’s terrifying. She could have been severely injured getting lost in the air like that.” Oriis also importantly noted, “that girl has endured more trauma by the age of 24 than most people will ever go through in a lifetime.”

Biles was abused for much of her career by convicted former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar. Biles recently testified at a senate hearing, stating USA Gymnastics was aware, “enabled and perpetrated Nassar’s abuse”.

After her withdrawal from Olympic events, Ms. Biles tweeted, “the outpouring love & support I’ve received has made me realize I’m more than my accomplishments and gymnastics which I never truly believed before”. Celebrity athletes have also weighed in with support such as PGA tour star golfer Rory McIlroy tweeted his support for both Ms. Biles and Naomi Osaka who also suffered with mental health issues during the Olympics. Justin Beiber also gave his support, “Nobody will ever understand the pressures you face! I know we don’t know each other but I’m so proud of the decision to withdraw. It’s as simple as -what does it mean to gain the world but forfeit your soul,” he wrote. Beiber has experienced first hand the impact fame can have on mental health.

My thoughts are kind of a curiosity and fascination surrounding the onslaught of comments regarding Biles decision to withdraw from competition. Living in the international spotlight, Biles chose to address the issue of mental health head on, bringing much needed awareness to abuse and mental health issues. Ms. Biles is capable of directing and managing her life.  She is the best expert about her self and I trust her as that expedient to make the right decisions. 

Dealing with your mental health is a priority and it is important for anyone suffering with mental health issues to get the treatment they need sooner rather than later. As a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC), and member of the British Columbia Association of Clinical Counsellors, and a member of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, click here for insights to my therapy approach.

In Canada, there is access to free mental health from a variety of sources.

With the Olympics now over, Biles along with other athletes and celebrities, have certainly helped to transform the much needed awareness of mental health issues and end the stigma surrounding mental health.


What is an eating disorder?

Anorexia nervosa, eating disorder not otherwise specified (ED NOS), and bulimia are the most common eating disorders. Eating disorders left untreated can become serious, affecting physical and mental health as well as social functioning.

How do I recognize an eating disorder?

People suffering from an eating disorder have issues with food regulation, food intake, and body image and do not eat in regulation to the actual food needs of their body. “Eating disorder symptoms can manifest in varying degrees and are a co-morbidity of other mental health issues,” comments Dr. Michael Dadson.

To read more about eating disorders, follow this link here.

Understanding Shame and Guilt

Dr. Dadson’s guiding principles shed some light on his approach to clients who battle emotions such as shame, guilt, and accompanying feelings of worthlessness. According to Dadson:

  • All people possess intrinsic worth and have the capacity to realize this.
  • All individuals are worthy of respect. My therapy space is one of acceptance and safety. Gender, race, sexual orientation, age, religion, relationship and family status pose no barrier to the therapy process.
  • Everyone has the ability to change; readiness depends on each individual.

The psychologically destructive effects of guilt and shame are manifested throughout society and are associated with a variety of mental health issues such as substance abuse, depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Dr. Mike Dadson has worked with hundreds of patients to overcome a variety of issues, primarily addressing anxiety, depression, and PTSD. Over the years, he has become familiar with the sometimes-crippling effects of guilt and shame in the human psyche.

To find out more about shame and grief, follow this link.

Extra Shots from J. & J. and Pfizer Give Immune Boost, Companies Report

The Food and Drug Administration will evaluate the new data as the Biden administration pushes a booster shot strategy.

Photo: Julia Kobitz

Vaccine manufacturers target a booster shot, studies released from Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer-BioNTech on Wednesday, indicated the extra booster shot can dramatically increase antibodies against the coronavirus.

To read more, follow this link.