We suggest that individuals with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) experience difficulty accessing their internal states, including their feelings, emotions, preferences, and motivations. Instead, they rely on proxies to inform them of these states—that is, discernible substitutes in the form of fixed rules and rituals, observable behavior, and indexes. The Seeking Proxies for Internal States (SPIS) model of OCD proposes that compulsions, obsessions, indecision, and doubt result from seeking and using such proxies. The SPIS model not only accounts for these OCD symptoms but also sheds new light on normal processes of action control, metacognition, decision-making, and introspection.
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- action control
- emotional intelligence