It’s super easy for adults with ADHD to get on our own nerves by leaving certain things to do until the last minute.
Or how about this one? Not doing tasks at all.
Sometimes these oversights and avoidance drive my hubby crazy. Here’s my argument: An important key to living with ADHD is prioritization. I had to learn to tell the difference between what actually needed to be completed yesterday and what I can do later.
I had to calm down and NOT let my priority function explode.
Let me explain.
The past three weekends, for me, have involved running around with holiday functions, traveling to my daughters for Thanksgiving, getting blogs ready, managing two businesses, all completed BEFORE the holidays. Add training for bike races.
Imagine what the interior of my car looks like after running around last three weekends. It contained a blow up mattress (we need a place to sleep at my daughter’s home), smelly cycling shoes, roasted almonds that got dropped between the seats, charging phone cords, and oodles of white dog hair from Riley.
The car was completely and totally a mess in every way.
Did I clean out the car right after we got home from the Thanksgiving weekend? Nope. Didn’t happen. I was exhausted and not touching that stuff until I had to.
I’m sure lots of people think you should put everything away right away. I’ve so many other things in my life that are more important. Things that actually need to be done right away. After all, I have ADD. Every single time I have to motivate myself to clean the car, vacuum the seats, wash my cycling shoes, it takes extra effort.
I let necessity dictate the timeline for cleaning out the car.
Necessity makes itself evident this past weekend, where I needed to take my dog on a hike. After all, Riley spend nine hours in the car. One way. To get back to the office, I needed to be able to get into the car.
I actually pulled things out of the car and set them inside the foyer. I got out the shop vac because who wants their brand new black sweater covered with white dog hair?
I did it. I ended up setting aside time to do some cleaning and organizing. I split my time between doing the dishes and putting away our travel stuff. I didn’t want to do either of those tasks.
Here’s the good news.
I didn’t freak too much about having to do either of them.
Here’s the thing.
Don’t waste your time and energy trying to make your life perfect.
Some tings need to be more perfect others. Make a list. Prioritize your list by putting 1, 2, or 3 next to your tasks. Mine would probably put washing dishes and cleaning out the car are low on the list.
If you put everything at the top of your list, you create an impossible expectation for yourself. Your list might look different than mine. By making a list, you give yourself a visual aid to come back to, when you need help figuring out what to do next.
Loretta Holmes, MA CMHWC is an ADHD and Anxiety Coach at Bella ADHD Coaching and Bella Anxiety Coaching. Before pursuing a career in coaching, she worked as a special education teacher. Today, she combines her skills in teaching, psychology, and coaching to help humans feel like superheroes. Connect with Loretta at firstname.lastname@example.org