I’ve worked with someone recently who is 11 and has problems OCD around germs. He has a complicated family situation and his parents are divorced. Every other weekend he goes to his dad and it is strained because his dad is impatient about his food phobias. For instance, he won’t eat out at most restaurants due to fears of foods making him ill. One thing that my patient does love is wrestling. In fact, he isn’t concerned about germs at all in that context of close contact. I introduced to John, some simple breathing techniques to help with stress. I also gave him a mantra to use during the day which was introduced by Yogi Bhajan in a lecture using the Victory Breath.
He said, “One thing you cannot escape is challenge. Whether you challenge the challenge or you give in to the challenge, that is what decides your spirituality.”
The meditation involves simply inhaling for three seconds, inwardly thinking the word Victory and then exhaling. Repeat this for a few minutes. Yogi Bhajan said, “Take it from me, I’m not giving you any Sanskrit word or any religious word or anything. I’m just telling you something which will help you survive through all odds. Whenever you face anything and you don’t have an answer, just call yourself inside and say, “Victory.” Lean on ‘Victory.’ Make it a guide word, make it a precious word. I don’t know what you are, who you are, why you are. Don’t ask questions. Don’t do your analysis. Don’t try to solve problems. Just utter the word ‘Victory.’ With just the mental utterance of this word your whole life will change. Mentally utter the word ‘Victory.’ Try it. You’ll find the strength of a hundred angels behind you.”
It is similar to an affirmation and I was assuming he’d apply it to his fears of eating out at restaurants. What surprised me is that he came in a few weeks later very excited and told me that he won his wrestling match and he was using the word Victory mentally before it began. It showed me how important that activity is for him and that he really wants to excel. His dad went to it so he was quite proud. Another nice result was that he told me that his dad bought food for them to cook together and it seemed that once that he did that my client was actually able to eat out more. So, this to me indicated that when his dad really showed empathy, my client realized that the love was there for him and something relaxed.
He concluded that talk on the Victory Breath saying, “You’ll get confidence on the spot. You’ll feel the kick. You’ll know something is with you better than you. That will give you headway for victory, and you’ll be fine. Remember: Breathe in, and mentally utter the word ‘victory.’ Just breathe in for one, two, or three seconds, repeat the word mentally, and after you say it, let the breath go.” This was on New Years eve in 1992 and a way to usher in the New Year.
Think about what is important to the child you are working with. It may not be what is presented by the mom, but something else. His desire for winning in wrestling was his strongest priority and his OCD was not his focus. Use the energy of what matters to your client to motivate him.