As an adult with ADHD, organization may be one of the constant challenges that you face. Lack of organization can affect your job and your home life, so it is important that you find strategies that you can use to increase your organizational skills and motivation. The following are just a few tips that could help.
Tip #1: Know your motivation
Motivation is the key, since you are more likely to stay focused if you are highly motivated. Determine your main reason for motivation. Are missed meetings or lost paperwork putting your job in jeopardy? Or, maybe you have let down a spouse or child because you forgot about an important event. Once you know your main motivation, write it down and post it in a place where you will see it several times a day – on the bathroom mirror or by your computer monitor, for example. This way you have a consistent reminder to retain your focus.
Tip #2: Get a timer
Decisions can be crippling for an adult with ADHD. Even small decisions can take hours, while larger decisions can take days or even months. To make matters worse, you may get distracted and then the final decision is never made. A simple timer can solve this. For decisions you need to make quickly, set a timer for just a couple of minutes, no more than five tops. When the timer sounds, deliver the first decision that pops into your head. Flip a coin if need be. Just decide something and move on. For decisions that require more thought, set a reminder in your smartphone or planner to make the decision at a specified time in the near future. Once again, when the reminder sounds you must deliver a decision right away.
Tip #3: Break your focus
Hyperfocus is a common complaint amongst adults with ADHD. For example, you log onto your email to check it briefly, and the next thing you know half the day has passed and you have been stuck reading posts on social media instead of attending to your responsibilities. If this describes you, set up a system to break hyperfocus. This could be as simple as using your timer so that it goes off at regular intervals throughout the day, which you then use as an alert to break focus and regroup.
Tip #4: Get help
Sometimes it takes more than your own skills or will power to develop healthy organizational habits. In this case, work with an ADHD coach. These professionals can help you find your personal weak points and then customize their coaching to find the tools that work best for you. When looking for a coach, make sure you choose one that specialized in adult ADHD. A general life coach will not be sufficient, since they may not have the knowledge or skills for the specifics of this condition. Also, coaches that primarily work with children may not be as useful for an adult that needs help at the office. Interview several coaches and make sure you choose one that has experience working with adults, ADHD, and people in similar situations or with similar goals to your own. For more information, contact Progressive Growth Coaching or a similar organization.