In today’s increasingly harried, “crazy busy” world, the ability to organize oneself is a critical survival tool, as there are so many more potentially distracting stimuli and demands on our time. For the person who has ADHD, that challenge is an even greater one. In his best-selling book on ADHD, Delivered from Distraction, Dr. Hallowell identifies seven critical habits that can help adults struggling with the condition:
1. Do what you’re good at.
Don’t spend too much time trying to get good at what you’re bad at. (You did enough of that in school.)
2. Delegate what you’re bad at to others, as often as possible.
If you don’t have someone to help, then hire someone. Delegate to others what you’re bad at.
3. Connect your energy to a creative outlet.
I call this the “creative imperative.” People with ADHD really need a creative outlet. I found that for most of us with ADHD, this is essential.
4. Get “well enough” organized to achieve your goals.
The key here is “well enough” organized to achieve your goals. It doesn’t mean you have to be Martha Stewart.
5. Ask for, and heed, advice from people you trust.
Then ignore, as best you can, the dream-breakers and finger-waggers. An old friend of mine used to say, “Be a dream maker not a dream breaker.”
6. Make sure you keep up regular contact with a few close friends.
I believe in the other Vitamin C – Vitamin Connect. Make sure you stay in touch with a few close friends. Loneliness is the biggest medical problem in the US today. One of he antidotes to loneliness is to have friends. If you don’t have friends, try to make some by join some groups visit the library, a gym. Or “get a dog.”
7. Go with your positive side.
Even though you have a negative side, make decisions and run your life with your positive side.
This list is a guide. It’s what works for me. If these habits don’t resonate with you, add your own to the list.
In this previously released Distraction mini episode on The 7 Habits of Highly Effective ADHD Adults, Dr. Hallowell gives his spin on Stephen Covey’s book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, with a similar list as above for those with ADHD. From doing what you’re good at, to asking for advice, you’re bound to find a few nuggets of applicable wisdom for your own life.
If you’re looking for ideas on managing your crazybusy life, read Dr. Hallowell’s blog post on: Taking Back Control of Your Crazybusy Life.