Adult ADHD Survival Tips
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can present any number of challenges for adults, from keeping focused to maintaining healthy relationships. The good news is, there are several steps you can take to make living with ADHD easier. Try the following seven tips to help manage your condition.
Learn about ADHD
There are numerous ADHD resources available, from condition-specific books and magazines to websites and online support groups. Take advantage of these resources, and network with other adults who have ADHD. Once you've learned the basics and established a support system, it becomes easier to work with medical professionals in determining and adhering to the best treatment.
Incorporate structure into your life
For ADHD adults, structure is the foundation for success, so be sure to take advantage of organizational tools such as lists, files, schedules, planners, tape recorders, and PDAs. People with ADHD also tend to be visually oriented, so use color-coding, graphs, charts, and other eye-catching tools whenever possible.
Break large tasks into small chunks
Large tasks tend to overwhelm adults with ADHD, but breaking them down into small pieces makes them easier to manage. For example, instead of, "I need to clean the house today," focus on one particular aspect, such as, "First, I need to straighten up the living room." Focus on completing the first part of the task before moving on to the next.
Schedule personal time
To avoid feeling overwhelmed, it's important to schedule some transitional times between activities. Take at least a 10-minute break after coming home from work to unwind before you start focusing on home life, and set aside a few minutes before or after the morning rush to mentally prepare for the day.
Prioritize responsibilities and obligations
Between work, life, and family obligations, your to-do list can start to seem like a never-ending inventory of all-important tasks and obligations. The key is to take stock, determining which tasks are truly time-sensitive and which others can wait a bit. Remember to tackle the important tasks before you start on something else.
Accept that ADHD may influence your personality
Remember that ADHD is a neurological disorder. Although this doesn't mean that it is an excuse for unacceptable behavior, it can explain certain traits, such as an inability to pay attention, a low tolerance for criticism, and difficulty defining objectives.
Exercise on a regular basis
Exercise is a great way to increase the chemicals in the brain needed for focus and attention. In addition, working out helps to rid your body of excessive energy and promote a sense of calmness and well-being—not to mention enhance your general health.
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