- Focus on the goal of the decision. (My blog is about sharing tidbits about ADHD with others.)
- Keep it simple.( I live it. I don't have to spend hours researching. It's not rocket science.)
- Ask yourself what is the worst that can happen? Often not making the best decision or a "wrong" one is better than no decision. (Not writing the handbook was much worse than it not being the best. Today I might wish I had written a different topic. It would be much worse not having posted anything!)
- Limit the amount of time you are willing to devote to the decision. It doesn't have to be the best decision. Just a decision that you've thought about and know why you made it.
- Think about your process. If it turns out after the fact that there was a better decision think about whether you could have known this ahead of time. If so that becomes a lesson to help you make a better decision next time. Make a note to remember this so you can do it better next time.(I remembered the painful lesson of the unwritten handbook. I stopped myself from getting twisted about finding a topic. This allowed me to do it different today.)
This is today's topic because I couldn't decide what to write about! I had been pleasantly surprised up till now that I was able to decide my blog topics without my usual prolonged decision making process aka struggle. So why is it so hard for us with ADHD to make decisions? Where should I start? Ha ha that's one of the challenges. Everything seems as important as everything else. This makes it hard to prioritize and thus decide how to proceed. What if I make the wrong choice? Having made impulsive choices in the past lends credibility to this fear. Overthinking and information overload is another stumbling block. Once I was hired to write a handbook on a topic I knew well, I never completed it because I did so much(unnecessary) research and had so much information that I couldn't decide what to include. Everything seemed important! So here are a few tips t help with indecision.
I'm not talking about food or diets I'm talking about activities and commitments. It seems that it's hard to find a balance between being busy and having nothing to do. I tend to over commit and end up feeling overwhelmed and then I pull back and end up feeling like I am spending too much time alone or watching too much TV. It's taken time to figure out how this happens and what I might be able to do about it. I finally realized the problem is that I say yes to everything. Not out of obligation (though that's how I end up feeling) but because of the H in ADHD I crave stimulation, can be impulsive and so many things interest me and I get excited about them(at least initially). Once I figured this out I came up with a strategy that works (sometimes) and a back up plan when it doesn't.
(Wow my last post was 11/6! I can't believe how time flies. I did go on vacation for a week. Once I got back it took me a week to reestablish some routine. Sound familiar? Including eating well, sleep and exercise schedule, writing my blog. Sound familiar? Transitions can be a challenge for ADDers. It's not that I didn't want to get back to my routines. I desperately did. It's just that it can take some of us ADDers a bit longer that's all. Maybe that's why some of us become rigid about changing it up or going on vacation. The challenge of getting back into it is too much. ( And then there's the packing...a topic for another day).
I was able to jump right back into my work schedule without missing a beat. That's because I did not have to establish the parameters. My clients were scheduled and I showed up. The routines that I have at home have taken much longer to reestablish.
So what can be done to help ourselves? Most important is ACCEPTANCE. Know that transitions are a challenge. Don't be yourself up or tell yourself all is lost and you'll never get back. Treat yourself with COMPASSION. Understand that it will happen it will just take a bit longer. Use POSITIVE SELF TALK to give yourself pep talks and keep awareness. Tell yourself that you will get back in the swing and remind yourself how good it will feel to be in your routine again.
I want to talk about the gift of ADHD today. Sure there are loads of challenges in everyday life for someone with ADHD but there is a flip side for just about every one of them. For example, the challenge of difficulty with staying connected with time, the past present future etc creates the wonderful ability to live in the now, be spontaneous and see each day anew. The challenge of speaking before one thinks is the source of much of the spark and humor, and quick wit of ADHD folks. The ADHD day dreamer who walks to the bet of their own drum is also the inventor and the impulsive risk taker is the entrepreneur, The emotional intensity of ADHD is the source of empathy, caring and authenticity. Life with ADHD can be a challenge for sure. Which is why I challenge you to think about a challenge of ADHD and find the flip side. I promise you it's there.
ADHD coaching can help with the day to day struggles of ADHD like staying organized, keeping on task, reaching your short and long term goals and developing strategies for handling the challenges of ADHD. All of this though is only the tip of the iceberg. Think of an iceberg floating along in the Arctic. Only a small portion of it is above the ocean's surface. The vast majority is hidden under the water. This is how I think of the feelings and lifelong effects of ADHD. What one sees are the behaviors and day to day challenges but hidden are the myriad of emotions and psychological effects of ADHD. Years of being called lazy or feeling stupid, not knowing why you can't do what others can. Blurting out or acting impulsively. All of this can cause shame, frustration, depression, perfectionism, sadness, anxiety, poor self esteem and and many more difficult feelings that are part of ADHD.
Being a psychotherapist as well as a life coach, I can help with the emotional and psychological challenges of ADHD. It is as important to treat these issues as it is to develop strategies for the cognitive and behavioral aspects of ADHD. The result is feeling lighter, unburdened and floating higher on the surface of your life!
As often happens with ADHD we can tend to skip a few steps and then have to go back. I'm going to talk about getting an ADHD evaluation which seems like the place I should have stated when I began this blog. So from the beginning...
I like using bullet points. Keeps me from running on and easy to focus on ;-)
Medication is one of the most effective tools in treating ADHD but it is not a magic bullet. Along with medication you need to pay attention to lifestyle choices that improve medication effectiveness and minimize side effects.
If you follow these recommendations most of you will minimize any possible side effects. If you have you notice a day where you are feeling medication based side effects think about whether you may have not paid enough attention to your choices in these areas.
If you continue to experience side effects in spite of healthy lifestyle choices speak to your prescriber. There are many medication options to try.
Welcome to my ADHD blog. I hope you will find it informative, fun and helpful in our daily life with ADHD.
If you've read the information on my site you know that I believe there are many advantages to having ADHD as well as challenges. This blog will be about making the most of the upside and strategies for minimizing the downside of ADHD. So stay tuned. Let's go on this journey together!