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Assuming too much responsibility could increase your chances of developing OCD and anxiety.

Researchers from Hiroshima University surveyed American college students about their feelings related to three types of responsibility: responsibility to prevent or avoid harm, responsibility for negative results, and responsibility to resolve a problem.

The team found that participants who felt strong feelings of responsibility were more likely to display behaviors of OCD or anxiety. Responsibility for negative results, and responsibility to resolve a problem had the most powerful association with these conditions.

Researchers say patients can reduce anxiety or obsessive behaviors by realizing their worries stem from this overwhelming sense of responsibility and actively working to diminish it.


Sugiura, Y., & Fisak, B. (2019, April 1). Inflated responsibility in worry and obsessive thinking. International Journal of Cognitive Therapy. Retrieved from

Taylor Bennett

Taylor Bennett

Taylor Bennett is Senior Writer and Editor at Thriveworks. She devotes herself to distributing important information about mental health and wellbeing, writing mental health news and self-improvement tips daily. Taylor received her bachelor’s degree in multimedia journalism, with minors in professional writing and leadership from Virginia Tech. She is a co-author of Leaving Depression Behind: An Interactive, Choose Your Path Book and has published content on Thought Catalog, Odyssey, and The Traveling Parent.

Check out “Leaving Depression Behind: An Interactive, Choose Your Path Book” written by AJ Centore and Taylor Bennett."

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