Thursday, November 1, 2012

ADD + OCD And What 5 Minutes Can Do For You

A few months ago I realized I was a mess! My OCD and ADD were overtaking my life! I wasn't getting anything done because I wanted everything to be perfect but while perfecting that oh so important thing (whatever it was at the moment) I would have an ADD moment. I would flitter off over to whatever that shinny thing out the window was. Then I wouldn't return back to that oh so important thing. In a nut shell, everything was half done. Never to be finished.

My house was a mess.

I was a mess.

Then I thought of something so simple. So silly, that it might just be my Saving Grace! I set a timer. Yup, I set a timer. When I hop on my computer, I just turn my timer on for either 5 or 6 min. (It is either 5 or 6 min because the OCD part of me would like the 5 min to happen at 9:00, 9:05, 9:10, 9:15, ect. The 6 min come on, you guessed it, 9:06, 9:12, 9:18, 9:24. And by the way, if you are wondering, there are ten 6 minutes in an hour. That makes it MUCH more even than twelve 5 minutes in an hour!)

Each time the timer goes off, I clean up that number of things. 5 min timer set = 5 things. 6 min timer set = 6 things. This might mean I fold 5 pieces of laundry, or put 5 spoons in the dishwasher then I go to something else for the rest of the time (read e-mails, crochet, or play a game with Caleb) Or if I have something like bills to do or vacuuming I do that activity for the full 5 min. Then relax the next 5 minutes. This means I am cleaning up 60 things in an hour or getting a small project done. 5 things every 5 mins seems so much less scary than 60 things all at once. This way I am not getting distracted either!

I have bookmarked the bomb timer. My kiddos love this bomb timer and have even started cleaning up a few things in their room each time it goes off!

Times that I set my timer:

- Anytime I am on the computer! (I have had my timer go off several times while writing this post)
- While doing a hobby or project
- While watching TV
- While chatting on the phone
- At 3:30 pm when I know I should be starting dinner (I might look up the recipe, then get all items out, then start water, then put ingredients together, then mix them together. So that by the time it needs to go in, all I need to do is get it in and it doesn't feel like I have been just slaving over the stove!)
- So many other times you could use this!

My house has had a dramatic change since starting this a few months ago! We are actually able to invite people over with out having to be embarrassed . We are able to walk around our house with out constantly tripping over something. We are able to take cute photos on the spot AND post them on facebook for friends and family to see (something I wouldn't and didn't do last year because I didn't want anyone to see out mess).

Are you ADD or OCD?? Have you tried a simple, silly 6 minute timer? If not, I encourage you to try it out sometime! Please leave a comment below if you have tried this or have other methods that you have found work.