There’s no denying that living with ADHD can be a struggle, but it doesn’t have to be. Those with ADHD don’t have to just live with their ADHD though, they can learn to thrive with it.
Here are 12 tips to help you do just that;
1. Take Time For Yourself
If you have nothing in tank, you will have nothing to give, and will have little ability to stay focused or withstand frustrations throughout the day. Take the needed time to fill up on life by doing something you enjoy. Spend time with friends, exercise, go shopping, participate in a hobby, even just sitting on the back porch. Aim for the types of things that give you peace and relaxation (not things like TV and drugs/alcohol which may give an illusion of relaxation but really cause greater disturbance).
2. Monitor And Transfer Emotions
ADHD individuals can be prone to letting their emotions get the best of them. To fight this, determine to keep an eye on your emotions, become aware of them, and then transfer them in a positive direction. Shift attention toward the positives. Instead of dwelling on what happens if you fail the exam, leading to anxiety, dwell on what happens if you pass. This will increase brain activity in a beneficial way, not only calming you down, but allowing your brain to think more clearly. Another option is, in the moment when you feel certain negative emotions, enter into a kind of meditation, repeat a phrase that means a lot to you several times, count to 10 slowly, or take 5 deep breaths.
3. Read And Learn Something New Everyday
Learning will keep you mentally sharp. Studies are saying that one should learn something new, out of their expertise, everyday to delay the onset of memory issues.
4. Realize The “Zone” Changes
When we are working or playing in the zone, all is seeming to go without effort, and it is going to some unwritten plan. It WILL change! Accept this reality, and go with the flow until the Zone returns.
5. Exercise Daily
Exercise is good for the body, but it is excellent for the brain. Those with FastBraiin / ADHD will have a marked improvement in focus with exercise. Some compare the effect to be as strong and more beneficial than stimulants. Exercise also improves the sleep-wake pattern we live in, unless it is late night which can actually keep us from sleeping.
6. Eat Breakfast
It can be easy to skip breakfast. Don’t do it! High protein with complex carbohydrates is best. Coffee is fine but watch the sugar. Using whole milk is actually preferable to skim and all the sugar that is left. Healthy fat is great for your brain. Incorporate things like nuts, seeds, avocado, grass-fed butter, and coconut oil. As in most everything, moderation is key. Don’t overdue it.
7. Work Your Working Memory
Working memory is key to our ability to function. We can keep 4-7 items working at one time in our head. Do concentration and memory exercises. Memorize a poem or a favorite quote. Reading probably is still one of the best, as well as discussing topics of interest and complicated ideas.
8. Write Down Ideas
Remember, working memory has only so much space. A great way to clear up your memory for important problem solving is to write things down. When you do not write things down, your subconscious holds on to the item, taking up valuable real estate in your working memory. Use apps, use your cell phone, dictate thoughts and ideas. This may also consequently relieve mental stress.
9. Sort Email
Managing ADHD must include managing the inbox. Each night your email box should be empty! Lets say that again- EMPTY! Develop a file system, and all emails go into one of 4 or 5 bins, and if you cannot put it anywhere, archive it! Stop the recurring internet blogs that come in. These create a steady source of noise and distraction for you, that is, unless you feel the emails fit in line with your goals.
10. Set Timers And Alarms
Living with ADHD well means understanding where you are weak. Part of our difficulty is not so much time-management, but actually knowing or realizing exactly how long it takes to get something done, or getting distracted along the way. To combat this, use your phone, watch, or set other alarms. Schedule things out. When sitting down to study, set the alarm for 20 minutes. Then get up and take a 5 minute break (possibly exercising). Repeat the process. This will keep your mind fresh and on task. This technique will prove itself over and over in curbing your tendencies to distraction.
11. Have A Place For Everything
“I can’t remember where I put them!” But you know, it is always in the last place you look! Use Tile© to attach to things such as keys, or even your iPad! Use iFind for your phone. Do not try to add up all the time you spent looking for things this last year-you will cry! Get organized and save valuable and time and energy which can be used for pursuing your goals.
12. Ask For Help
Moses was in the Wilderness for 40 years! Why? Did not want to stop and ask for directions! Ask for help! Learn and understand that you are OK! Yes you are FastBraiin, but you bring a lot to the table, so embrace your abilities, your challenges, and your knowledge. Be willing to admit you don’t have all the answers or can’t do something. Ask for help. We all need help, and the sooner we start realizing that the sooner we can move forward in life.
These are only a sampling of the many practical tips there are for living with ADHD. The bottom line is you need to find what works for you. Every brain is different. Get a system. Start your own discovery process to find out what works and what doesn’t. Persevere. Try and try again. Experiment. You will find what works.
And in the meantime, give us a call or schedule a visit, we’d love to help you.