- Mindset is important. Monitoring our thoughts and reactions is key. If we are telling ourselves we will never be able to be successful at the task we will quickly give up.
- Reminding oneself how good it will feel it we see a task through to the end...seeing past the immediate frustration.
- It's ok to take a break, work on letting go of the frustration and get back to it.
- See it as a challenge that you are intent on meeting. Many of us can do this in our "wheelhouse" areas sports or creating art or music for example. It's much harder in areas we are not familiar with or good at.
- ASK FOR HELP. I bet I called online support two dozen times while trying t figure out my website issue. Sometimes during a call I had to politely hang up due to frustration. I would compose myself(sometimes not till the next day or two) and call back.
It's been a while since my last post. Summer and life taking a front seat. Not to mention a round of site related chaos getting my security settings in place. Arrgh! If any of you tried this site over last month or so and it looked unsafe that is why. I am actually quite impressed that I could persevere in the face of very frustrating circumstances to solve the puzzle necessary to get my site's security clearance. I know we can all struggle with perseverance in the face of frustration and can often quickly give up. We do this even wen the stakes are high. How can we increase our "stickability"?
Losing weight and keeping it off can be a real challenge if you have ADHD. Just eating on a regular schedule can be difficult never mind healthy eating! Deciding what to cook, planning ahead to have to right stuff in the fridge, time management, following recipes, all present executive functioning challenges which are not an ADHD strong suit. Skipping meals or eating fast food is often the answer to these challenges that seem overwhelming to us.
What can we do to start to change this pattern? First, start small. Make little changes and try to establish a habit with the new behavior. One at a time! It won't help if you overwhelm yourself! Here are some ideas to begin.
So I've mentioned how important it is for those of us with ADHD to find our wheelhouse. This is the place where our ADHD brain thrives. Where we feel excited interested and stimulated in healthy ways. This is especially important when picking a career. Some of us are lucky and fall into a career that suits us or we have a passion that we can follow into a career. For me it was knowing I wanted to help others and this passion led me to becoming a social worker then a psychotherapist and life coach. Here is a list of careers that are not tied to a desk, require energy, are creative, challenging and benefit from brains that think outside the box!
Entrepreneur/Small Business Owner
Hospitality Industry/ Restaurant/Hotel
We all have ADD and we have different strengths and challenges, passions and challenges. Find what fits you and go for it!
Hmmmm....what should I do today? What should I have for dinner? Which of these products should I choose? What should my blog topic be today???
There are many reasons behind difficulty making decisions. Perfectionism, Analysis Paralysis,
Spring is finally here...I hope. A few warm sunny days and I begin to believe again. After the initial elation comes that familiar feeling...there is so much to do! I can feel overwhelmed just thinking about it now. Especially if you own a home it can seem daunting to think of the spring chores. Here's a few ideas to get started and avoid the usual struggle to get it all done.
Just back from a week in sunny Florida. Aaaah solar therapy! You might think FOMO has something to do with my Florida and it does in a way. It actually refers to a condition common to many with or without ADHD. The difficulty with committing to something often caused by Fear Of Missing Out. I find that those of us with ADHD can often have a greater than average dose of this. Our brain's need for lots of stimulation lead us to want to "do it all". If we commit to one thing it can lead to not being free to do another that comes along. This can result in missing out on opportunities because we didn't commit in order to keep our options open. I have long struggled with this and would marvel at those folks who would plan a vacations a year or even months ahead.
Realizing that I have missed out on some things and have annoyed more than one friend or family member with my inability to commit I decided to try to do it different. So over the last year or so I have been making plans, buying concert tickets well in advance, planning vacations and actually buying the airline tickets, saying yes a week or more out for weekend plans. How has it worked out? Well, I have had times where I had to let go of something that came along that I couldn't do because of previous commitment. That has led me to work on letting go and focusing on what I am doing rather what I can't. It has also allowed me the luxury of looking forward to and anticipating a fun time coming up. Something that is missing when one makes last minute decisions.
The one thing that I have to work on is checking my calendar now before committing to something. There is the problem of double booking when you make future plans and this has happened more than a few times. A topic for a future blog. Enjoy!
Wel,l I'm back at it. I spent about half of February traveling and having so much fun that when I was home I did not even think of blogging. In fact I spent much of the little time I had trying to get organized again! I love traveling and the freedom from routine but when I get home I'm lost without it. Don't get me wrong, my routine is not complicated or that rigid. Basically just a few things I know I do everyday to stay on track. Yoga, a good breakfast, making a healthy lunch which requires grocery shopping regularly, weekly blog, regular bedtime, weekly laundry (sometimes stretched to biweekly) maybe a few more things I can't think of right now. So just the basics.
Why when I travel and am out of my routine does it take me so long to get back into it? It feels like trying to quickly turn an ocean liner... it doesn't happen. I'm sure it has to do with brain chemistry. All the dopamine and adrenaline that was coursing between my synapses is now trying to fire up about getting back on a schedule...so exciting and fun...not. But it is soothing once I've gotten it back. I try to be compassionate that I need time to get back in the swing. As I plan for my next trip (leaving for Florida next week) I know I will go through the same challenge when I get back. But that's ok. It will happen and right now I'm doing a Happy Dance that I sat down and wrote this blog today!
When I picture ADHD I think of an iceberg. Above the water are all the symptoms and behaviors that are visible. The disorganization, hyperactivity, impulsivity, to name a few. You get the picture. All the ways ADHD trips us up for us and the world to see. Yet just like an iceberg,under the surface lies an even more massive body of issues related to ADHD. These are the underlying feelings, emotions and struggles presented by ADHD that no one ever sees and we might not even recognize as part of the having ADHD.
There is the shame and self esteem issues, depression, anxiety, confusion, and so much more that can be part of the picture of ADHD. Much of which has slowly built up over time a result of negative feedback and reactions of others over the years or our own negative explanations for why we are like we are.
When seeking treatment for ADHD it is important to address the entire iceberg especially what lies beneath the surface. Coaches who are also trained clinically are the best resource to deal with the ADHD iceberg.
Consistently Inconsistent is how I describe the forward progress when one has ADHD. In spite of our best efforts to create habits or keep up with a plan we inevitably fall of the rails. This could be just a brief hiccup or a more extended hiatus from remembering to take medication, or being on time or putting our keys in the place we decided they should go. When this happens, and it will, it is best to see it as part of the process. Progress not perfection. It is much more healthy and helpful to focus instead on the period of time we were consistent rather than beat ourselves up about not following through. By staying positive it is much easier to get back on track which is all that matters. Take some time to evaluate whether there is anything you can do to increase your consistency. A better place for the keys, better reminders etc. Sometimes it is just the need to refocus on the behavior we are trying to maintain.
A new beginning! The making of resolutions. We ADDers often get a rush of excitement starting fresh. Best intentions to do it different be it get organized, be on time, follow through, finish what we start seem possible. So why after a few days, weeks, a month do we find ourselves back to the same old. Well, partly it's the nature of ADD "consistently inconsistent". We lose focus, get distracted even briefly and it's hard to get back on track or it just keeps happening we can't seem to stick with it. Good intentions alone cannot overcome our ADD brains. So what's the answer? I wish it were simple (how many times have we all said this to ourselves) but it isn't. It is possible to make progress. Try some of these suggestions as you go forward in the New Year.