Studies show that the number of people diagnosed with ADD and ADHD in the U.S. continues to rise every year and currently affects as much as 11% of the population from state-to-state. While these disorders are most commonly associated with children and adolescents, adults also struggle with ADD and ADHD, making it hard for them to live successful lives with their symptoms. That is why we have put together a list of ten tips for adults living with ADD or ADHD to help them manage their disorder and become more focused and successful.
1. Limit Distractions
Especially in this digital age where everything you do and see can happen at the blink of an eye, distractions can be overwhelming for anyone. Try working in a quiet area with little decor, or even closing down your internet when it isn’t necessary to have it open.
2. Work in a Small Space Everyday
When it comes to your work especially, keeping tasks and assignments you are working on confined to a small space can help to limit unproductive distractions. For some this might mean a cubicle facing away from regular activity or a window, or it could also mean shutting the door and working within an unfrequented room in your home.
3. Keep Your Systems Simple
Complex assignments with several subtasks or factors can often become overwhelming. Try breaking down your daily agenda into bite-size, manageable chunks that are simple and straightforward.
4.Think About Therapy
Sometimes we just need a little guidance from a trained professional. Seeking therapy can often lead to helpful advice, tips, or it can even become a trusted ear where you voice your concerns, stresses, and agendas.
5. Join a Community
Many people just like you are going through the same day-to-day struggles with their disorder. Try joining an online forum or community for Adult ADHD/ADD and use that as a place to share trials, tips, and personal triumphs.
6. Plan Ahead
Organization and forward thinking are great skills to learn that will help you to stay focused and on the ball with your daily tasks.
7. Train Your Brain
There are quite a few studies that show how simple brain teasers and exercises based around organization, attention, and memory can often help train your brain to avoid distractions and be more productive. Our favorite app for this is the Lumosity App, it is free, simple, and fun!
8. Educate Yourself and Others
The best way for yourself as well as others to understand and recognize your disorder is to know all about it. Educate yourself on ADD/ADHD, know your symptoms, your triggers, and research ways and methods others are using to cope in their everyday life.
You have a lot on your plate, but that doesn’t mean all of it needs to be done at the same time or right this second. Take a step back and evaluate your tasks, find out what is most important and start from there. That way your tasks will be less daunting and you will find it easier to focus on what needs to be done.
10. Take Time to Recharge
A lot of people struggling with ADD or ADHD find themselves trying to take on too much and hardly ever say ‘no’ when they should. Don’t feel guilty when you need a break from it all and a minute to recharge. Your concentration and ability to do good work will be better off from the downtime.
Do you have further questions or concerns about living successfully with adult ADD/ADHD? Feel free to email us at any time.
Live Mentally Healthy,
Cognitive Psychiatry of Chapel Hill