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The 10 Day Beat OCD Morning Challenge

I find with OCD that how you start your day is often how you end it. Do you find this? Starting the day wrong could be eating late (which can affect anxiety), being in a rush or simply not focusing your mind on where you want it to go. As a result OCD can catch us out, in our morning of wishy washyness. I’ve even found that OCD creeps in to my dreams sometimes, which means I have awoken anxious, so I’m already on the back foot. Rushing to work doesn’t give me any time to relieve this anxiety.

If this is you, I propose you join me in a 10 day challenge called “The 10 day beat OCD morning challenge”, catchy I know. If you are familiar with my book Challenge Yourself, I Dare You, you’ll know I’m a big believer in challenges. Usually 30 day challenges, however I wanted to start small on this one. Test the hypothesis, then roll out the results.

The hypothesis: After completion of the 10 days, my intrusive thoughts, ruminations, compulsions and anxiety will be lower.

The morning challenge:

  1. Hydrate – Drink a glass of water
  2. Clear the mind, detach from thoughts – Meditate for 15 minutes
  3. Focus the mind -
  • Read *OCD beating mantra – I swear to not answer the obsessive thoughts in my head because they are just a by-product of a biological disorder. I will stand firm when I am swarmed with anxiety because I know this is just false messaging, not the truth. I swear to take healthy action in spite of what my brain is telling me. Because I know that the truth will prevail and this too shall pass.
  • Gratitude exercise – Spend 3-5 minutes listing all that you are grateful for
  • Read goals
  1. Eat – a healthy breakfast within 30 minutes of waking

The four step challenge aims to take care of the body and mind.

Eating a healthy meal within 30 minutes of waking has been proven to help limit anxiety.

Clearing your mind will help prevent cognitive fusion which is the merging of your thoughts to emotion. Your OCD will attach the anxiety to an intrusive thought and thus the cycle starts. By meditating you are breaking that link, you are showing your brain you are not your thoughts. Starting to defuse yourself from your thoughts, will help you not buy into what OCD is telling you throughout the day.

After this, focusing your mind is important because it’s you showing your brain where you want to go today, what you want to do and in what mindset.

I will be updating daily with the results, and I’ll provide a full wrap up in 10 days.

Wish me luck,

Stu

*You can create your own mantra or use mine.

Day 1: I did the meditation last. I feel more focused and happy than usual in the morning. Doing meditation allows me to observe the OCD. Helps me see through it's lies.

Day 2: I did meditation last again. Poor job at getting up on time. I find the mornings are more focused and I find it easier to ignore obsessions. So far so good!

Day 3: Reading/listing my goals is keeping me focused. This is making me happier and taking my mind away from OCD thoughts.

Day 4: I found it hard to wake up this morning. I also dosed off during meditation - oops. I still feel more focused despite this. Alert and aware. Reading the mantra is helping me defuse myself from my thoughts.

Day 5: Having the water by my bed for when I wake, makes it easy to start the challenge.

Day 6: I had a few drinks last night. Which made it harder to be mindful during the challenge. That being said, I'm sure I'd be worse right now if it wasn't for the challenge.

Day 7: Didn't get up in time.

Day 8: It was a bit spread out as I didn't allow myself a lot of time. However, reciting my goals focused me for the day. The meditation quietened my mind in the morning.

Day 9 Didn't get up in time.

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