5 Strategies For Adults Struggling With ADHD
As an adult struggling with ADHD which was diagnosed already on my adulthood, I have developed a series of strategies that have helped me cope with this condition. This are tips I would like to share in case they could be helpful, however remember I am not a doctor or certified psychiatrist. That being said, let’s begin!
1. Get Professional Help
So this is not exactly a strategy itself, but it is the beginning of having one. Getting diagnosed was really a mind broadening experience, it was very emotional to finally understand what has been happening all this time.
So don’t neglect going to therapy, even if you already got diagnosed, try and keep it up. Sometimes, after getting some kind of enlightening by going to therapy, we actually stop going because we think “that was it”, we can do it by ourselves from now on, and probably we can, but most likely is just a defense mechanism trying to keep us on our confort zone and preventing us from actually getting a better life.
2. Have Boundaries
You know what your limits are, respect them. Simple as that. We may have the urge of asking too much from ourselves, to overextend ourselves by taking more tasks that we can handle — specially — if we already know we have a different condition, we kind of want to push us to be “normal”, but hey, first of all, there’s no such thing as “normal”; and secondly, if you’re already aware of your own mind structure, why wont you help it work? why would you push it until you break and can’t do anything at all?
Do not underestimate the amount of time you need to get things done. Do not commit more and deliver less, but quite the opposite.
Take your time to understand your limits and live by them.
3. Create An ADHD Friendly Environment
So what does this mean? Minimizing distractions! Living with ADHD means that almost every single thing that’s not where it is supposed to be, may be a potential distractor, and the worst part is that coming back from that distraction could take up to 2 hours, just because as a consequence of that distraction you may end up distracted in another 20 things that don’t necessarily need your attention at that specific time
First of all, as I have said before, a clutter room equals a clutter mind. You need to declutter to minimize distractions and actually improve focus.
- Turn off notifications
- Get a quiet space
- Keep your space clean
- Learn to say no to unnecessary tasks
4. Stay Organized
Yes, it sounds impossible, and that’s exactly why you need to do it. For us struggling with ADHD, being organized, having to do one thing at a time it just doesn’t seem to be very realistic, because we probably want to do everything — everything — right now, but that’s not possible, is it? So we end up doing nothing, and we could remain the same for days, feeling exhausted and overwhelmed by all of that we need to do but are humanly incapable of doing. Guess what? That is cause is not possible, you need to prioritize, yes prioritize, and do one thing at a time.
I know it all sounds horrible and impossible, but that is why you are following all of the previous steps; such as decluttering, saying no to unnecessary tasks, and also the following:
- Make to do lists.
- Select 3 big tasks you need to focus on your day.
- Journal about what you did on your day, learn how much you actually accomplished and don’t forget to add how that made you feel.
- Use color coding for better visual representation of that which is more important.
5. Follow A Routine
Have you heard of morning routines? I actually shared my own in this article I wrote, however I have come to create more like a daily routine than just a morning routine, I have almost every second of my day planned and several reminders on my phone to actually perform those.
I am not going to lie, sometimes I don’t follow my routine even if the reminder is ringing on my phone, but definitely I follow it more often than when I don’t have those on.
It sounds silly, but knowing what you have to do, when you have to do it and being constantly reminded of that, sometimes really makes a difference.
Struggling with ADHD can make you feel like you are the only one on earth who feels this way, tell me about it. However trying to incorporate this changes, maybe one by one, little by little, can make things easier, and I myself am always going to be willing to hear about your experiences in order to nourish a community to not ever feel alone in this. Please reach out, I want to hear from you.