Posted on March 27, 2015
ANNOUNCING A NEW AND EXCITING PROGRAM JUST FOR WOMEN WITH ADHD
The Queens of Distraction 10 Day Spring Cleaning Challenge to Clear out the Cobwebs and the Clutter! Special Rates if you join now!
JOIN THE QUEENS OF DISTRACTION AT MY SPECIAL SPRING RATE AND AS A SPECIAL BONUS, YOU WILL BE REGISTERED FOR THE 10 DAY SPRING CLEANING CHALLENGE
We’ll begin the challenge on April 1, so hurry and sign up today!
Huh? What is this all about?
The Queens of Distraction group is about to begin a 10-day challenge to get their homes and lives in order. Each day, we’ll be attacking a specific chore as a group in my private, exclusive Queens of Distraction Facebook. In addition to your membership, you will enjoy all the other activities you get in your Queens of Distraction membership:
Monday: De-clutter/Organizing Assignments
Wednesday: Procrastinator’s Workshop
Thursday: Women with ADHD Chat
…plus 24/7 support and more
Want to get your world in order? Join today at my special Spring rate, then roll up your sleeves and get ready to make your home sparkle. You can choose a 3 or 6 month membership- both include the 10- Day Spring Challenge.
New members will receive a special gift: my Clutter Crusher Toolkit! Sign up today to become a Queen and get ready for the April 1st Spring Challenge.
(Current Queens are already registered).
Questions? Email me at Support@QueensOfDistraction.com
Register now at our special Spring rates! But hurry- this won’t last!
Posted on March 23, 2015
I lost my step-dad a few weeks ago… at the ripe old age of 91. Though his passing was no surprise given his age and many health challenges, I was shocked at how hard it was for me, on many different levels.
From the perspective of ADD, there was only one easy thing about all of this: I didn’t have to decide what to wear to the funeral. Ok, so that might sound funny or insensitive, but it’s true. So let’s move on to some of the ADD related issues that weredifficult. I’m wondering if any of you can relate-
Other than the obvious heartbreak of losing someone close and its effects on the remaining loved ones, I found that I was thrown for a loop in other ways, mainly in the challenge of what I’m calling emotional multitasking. Ok, so I just Googled the term and see I didn’t invent it. Oh well.
They say that people with ADD are good at multitasking. I beg to differ, at least in my case and in many adults I know with ADD: we tend to get overwhelmed and de-railed when too many things hit us at once.
Not only is there a flood of emotional pieces that the griever must work on (the rush of feelings, even when you think you’re prepared; dealing with family members not getting along, working on your own grief while helping others get through theirs…etc.) but there are also the tangible things that have to be taken care of: managing estates, paperwork, belongings…all while having your routine thrown completely off- resulting in feeling, again, de-railed and often lost and confused.
Adults with ADD often feel things deeply. I addressed this in my book, “The Queen of Distraction” but it bears repeating here. Grief, concerns, worry, fear, anxieties- we don’t typically just breeze through any of these or other strong emotions. They leave their tattoos on our soul for weeks, months and often, forever. We’re told to “just get over it”. We’re told that the feelings aren’t normal. But with ADD in the picture (and often times, their not so friendly pals, anxiety and depression), we need to take a different path than our non ADD friends and family and allow ourselves extra time to recover and also to seek out extra comfort and support during life challenges.
How about you? What major changes in your life have thrown you for a loop? How did you get through it?
Please share in the Comment section below.
Posted on February 23, 2015
While I’m on vacation, please enjoy this article, written by guest author, Ariane Benefit, M.S.Ed. Read more about Ariane at the end of the article.
Do You Make To Do Lists But Then Don’t Follow Them?
If you are like the hundreds of people who tell me they make lots of lists, but have difficulty following them or even finding them, you are not alone!
Difficulty following lists is very common among people with a creative or right-brain dominant personality style as well as with ADDers. In addition, people with certain kinds of brain injuries or head injuries may find it easy to “make” lists, but have much trouble “following” lists. There are many psychological, neurological, learning style, sensory, and even genetic reasons why some people are not good at “following” written instructions of any kind, including their own lists!
I’m going to spare you the theories, but promise me you’ll stopping beating yourself up! It’s not that you are lazy or procrastinating…it’s how you are wired. So let’s accept it and work with it. Even though it’s not easy for you…there are some tricks to making your lists easier to follow.
Here’s the thing about making lists. Writing itself is a very effective way to clarify what’s on your mind, process information and enhance your ability to remember things. So there is a good reason to keep on making your lists! They help you:
- Remember things better (just like taking notes)
- Slow down your brain to the speed of writing so that you can think more clearly and get your ideas out.
- Articulate your ideas.
- Reduce your fear that you will forget the items
Before we look at ways to make lists easier to follow… let’s look as some of the things that make them more difficult to follow. Lists may be harder to follow if:
- There are too many items on it
- Handwriting isn’t clear or the lettering is not big enough
- You use light colored ink or pencil
- The paper used is colored and does not provide a high contrast with the ink used
- Action items aren’t listed in order of priority and you have to scan the whole list to decide which things to do next.
- Item don’t list all the information you need to act on it, e.g. for some people, if they don’t write the phone number and have to hunt it down, they will skip write over that item on the list.
- The spacing between the items is too close.
- More than a day or 2 goes by before you look at it again (particularly if you have ADD, the list may lose all sense of urgency)
- You have any kind of reading or vision difficulties such as a mild dyslexia
- You are stressed when you look at the list
- You have lots of other ideas going through your head when you look at
- The items are so brief that you forget what was actually meant. For example, I have seen many examples of people writing things like “Call Doctor” and then forgetting which doctor and why.
There are many more items I could add, but I think you get the idea. Everyone is different in terms of what works best for them, but here are some tips that might help you make your lists easier to “follow”.
- Limit the items to 4 – 6 short items on them
- Use very clear large lettering, I use a black Sharpie for lists I really need to follow
- Put lots of space between items. This makes it easier for your brain to focus on one item at a time.
- Put a little box or circle in front of each item so that you can check it off when you are done
- Put high priority items at the top, lower priority in the bottom half of the list.
- Use color or other visual cues to help you highlight the highest priority items: e.g., highlighters or my personal fave is to draw “clouds” or “bubbles” around the most important things.
- Use brightly colored paper with high contrast to your ink.
- Use a TO DO notebook that is ONLY for Action Items. Put a removeable tab or post-it on pages with open items in your notebook.
- Don’t mix things you would “like to do” with things that you really “will or must do”. One trick I’ve used is to turn the notebook upside down and use the back of the book to capture “brainstorms” and “ideas” or use a separate notebook all together.
- Some people need “novelty” to help stimulate their brain to pay attention to their lists, so using different color paper and highlighters may be effective. So if you are the types that likes trying out new ways to make your lists, have fun with it, but be aware that if you try lots of complicated software to do lists you are probably wasting a ton of time learning and setting up new ways to do your lists. Try to restrain your “novelty needs” to simple, easy changes.
Alternatives to linear lists and paper may also help you follow lists better. I use different methods for different kinds of lists. Some of the tools I use:
- Digital Recorder
- Calling in to my Voice mail
- White boards (I have a couple small ones that I use like pads of paper, and one on the wall fo rwhen I need to move around to think/)
- Mind Mapping
- Flip Chart that I hang on a nail on my office door
- Post-it Flip Charts that I hang on my wall.
- Magnetic pads for my refrigerator
- Chalkboard in the kitchen
You may need to experiment with alternate ways to find the best way for you to make your lists, and you may need different kinds of lists for different things. Some people need to stick to one kind of list, others need the diversity.
Give yourself permission to play and experiment till you find methods that not only attract you but are easy to read and follow later. Another option is to just give yourself permission to make lists with the intention of helping you get things off your mind without the expectation that you have to follow them! If they helped you remember, and you did the action item without looking at your list. That’s good enough.
© 2008 Ariane Benefit, M.S.Ed.
Would you like to simplify your life and get more organized? Get her free e-book let with strategies for “Simplifying your Life” at www.arianebenefit.com. Ariane has been quoted in Psychology Today, the Wall Street Journal, and Ariane has over 25 years experience helping businesses and individuals cultivate personal growth and enhance performance by learning life-changing skills, attitudes and habits. Visit her popular Neat & Simple Living Blog at http://blog.neatandsimple.com
Need more help? Join the Queens of Distraction so I, along with your fellow Queens, can help you stay on track all while cheering you on and offering support and strategies: www.QueensOfDistraction.com.