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by Maddie Lukens, MA

There are certainly times when we all feel off task. Sometimes there are days where it feels like nothing gets done because we are stressed, we can’t stay focused, we are tired, or we’re in pain. But for some people, they might have a daily struggle with focus and maintaining attention. It is estimated that approximately 4.4% of the adult population in the United States has a diagnosis of ADHD (source).

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or more commonly known as ADHD is a disorder that affects a person’s brain, making it difficult for them to maintain attention, control impulses, and be still for long periods of time. Executive functioning is the primary area a person experiences difficulty in. The front part of the brain (specifically the frontal lobes) is responsible for helping us plan, make decisions, organize, maintain attention, use sound judgement, and control our behavior). For a person with ADHD, the front part of their brain works differently than a person without ADHD. Finding the right supports is essential to functioning well.

As overwhelming as life can be, here are 4 tips that might help you if you struggle to manage your ADHD:

  1. Accountability. Accountability doesn’t have to be a scary word, making us want to shy away. Rather, accountability can be useful. Asking friends or family members to check in on us can actually help us keep on task. OR, if it is annoying to have someone check in with you about something, maybe the pending check-in from a loved one can be motivation to help spur you on to complete your tasks.
  2. Reminders (calendars, apps, sticky notes). We live in such a helpful age of access and technology. We know there is an app for pretty much everything, but finding the apps that help you function best can make or break your experience with ADHD. Using apps that send you reminders, or utilizing different sounds on your phone to remind you to take your medication versus taking a phone call, are just a few ideas!
  3. Master List. Some people who have ADHD make list after list because they have a hard time keeping track of where they wrote something down. I would suggest using a master list and have it be something that you always have with you (like a note on your phone). Having a master list will minimize the clutter and give you something to come back to if you get distracted from what you were doing.
  4. Let go. Being able to get something done in an efficient amount of time is important. Having it look the exact way you want or were hoping is not always possible. It’s important to know when to let go of what you cannot change or what you cannot do better. Sometimes tasks are left unfinished because they don’t look the way we want them too. Give yourself grace and allow things to look less perfect than you imagined, you will find freedom.

Start Therapy in Ambler, PA

If you’re an adult who struggles with ADHD, it’s important to know that there are supports out there that can help you function better. It’s about more than changing your environment – together we can help give your body and brain the support it needs to be successful. At Lime Tree Counseling, our team of professionals can help you. In addition to ADHD, our therapists specialize in anxiety treatment, trauma, and addiction counseling. Contact us to schedule a free phone consultation or initial appointment today!