If you’re an adult struggling to cope with ADHD, everyday life can present you with various challenges. You may have difficulty managing work and personal relationships, meeting demands at work and at home, as well as taking care of your own health and well-being. If you’re in need of some tips to help you manage daily life with your ADHD, below are five strategies you can start using today.
1. Watch the Clock Becoming more mindful of the time will help immensely in managing your day-to-day symptoms. When you start tasks or chores, make note of the time; write it down or say it aloud if needed. You can also stay aware of the time by always wearing a wristwatch. Take note of areas in your home where you may spend a lot of time without realizing it, such as your garage, bathroom, or living room. Instead of relying on small appliance clocks that are easy to ignore (such as on the microwave or the cable box), buy a large wall clock and place it in a highly visible location.
2. Use Timers and Reminders Use your smart phone to set timers when you start tasks. You can also use your smart phone to set reminders to yourself.
3. Make a Priority List Keep a list handy for tasks and chores, and be sure to list them by priority: the most important things get done first. For lower priority tasks, schedule to do them after your higher priority tasks are complete. Set a reminder to review your priority list each morning, before you check voicemail or email. When you receive tasks from others, schedule them right away according to your priority list, rather than theirs.
4. Remove or Manage Time Sinks If you find yourself checking email, news/gossip sites, blogs, or social media too frequently, uninstall or move app shortcuts around to make them harder to access. For websites or computer games/applications, delete shortcuts or bury the shortcut in a folder so it’s more difficult to get to.
5. Give Yourself Extra Time When figuring how long it will take to complete a task, add 10 minutes on to the time to allow yourself extra time to get things done. Plan to arrive at work and other functions 10 to 15 minutes earlier to avoid being late.
Although there’s no cure for ADHD, there are many things you can do to manage it. By developing healthy habits, you’ll find that handling daily challenges will become second nature.
If you’re having trouble managing your ADHD and would like some guidance from a licensed, trained professional, call my office today so we can set up an appointment to talk.
Chelsy A. Castro, JD, MA, AM, LCSW