An effective technique to deal with Adult ADD/ADHD


For adults diagnosed with ADD/ADHD the responsibilities of daily life can be challenging. Routine tasks such as paying the bills on time, organizing family schedules, keeping up with deadlines at work, and other social demands can be overwhelming.  However, with the right tools and techniques it is possible to get focused and turn chaos into calm.

Listed below are some of the areas People with ADD/ADHD tend to have trouble in.  These areas affect both their personal and professional relationships.  In this article, I am going to outline the technique of using a personal assistant to effectively conquer these challenges.

  1. Time management
  2. Planning
  3. Organization

1) Time management: Poor time management is a common effect of adult ADD/ADHD. You may frequently lose track of time, miss deadlines, underestimate how much time you need for tasks, or find yourself doing things in the wrong order. Many adults with ADD/ADHD may also spend too much time on one task—known as “hyperfocusing”—and miss other important things that need to get done.

How can your assistant help? a) Delegate your calendar management to your assistant and have them help you plan how much time you need to set aside for major tasks or meetings.  For e.g. your assistant can set your appointments and also send you a reminder via text to remind you when you need to leave to get to your appointment on time.  Also, they can prompt you to wrap up the meeting if you are taking more time than you should.

b) Ask your assistant to be your gatekeeper they can screen your calls, mail and emails. They can also respond to routine correspondence, while you focus on more important matters.

c) Delegate small details or tasks that seem to sap your energy to your assistant.  This will free up your time so you can focus on the big picture.

2) Planning: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can wreak havoc on planning. Often, people with adult ADD/ADHD mis-prioritize, procrastinate, fail to meet big obligations, like a deadline at work, while spending countless hours on something insignificant, such surfing the internet.

How can your assistant help? a) Invite your assistant to help in the planning phase.  Most assistants are innately programmed to be time sensitive they can help you set a realistic plan and point out things you might miss on the time line.

b) If you have a large project, have your assistant create a timeline by breaking down large tasks into small ones and attach deadlines to the smaller tasks. Your assistant should track the project and prompt you for information or decision at pre-determined times during the project.  They should also prompt you when you are taking way too long on a task.

3) Organization: People that have ADD/ADHD need to create a work space that is free of destruction.  In particular, your work space should be in a quiet space that is dedicated as an office, rather than working in an open space such as the kitchen table with access to the family.  In addition, piles of paperwork, heaps of material, or clutter can be overwhelming.

How can your assistant help? a) Hire a highly organized assistant and they can help maintain your space by putting things back to where they belong. b) Ask your assistant to attend your important meetings or phone conversations and take notes. Then send you a recap you can review after the meeting.  Have your assistant also add items you need to take action on and add them as tasks on your to-do list.

c) In addition to the to-do list and calendar, have your assistant create other documents that outline processes for completing complicated tasks, chores or reminder list for routine tasks.

By using effective tools and techniques one can conquer the challenges of ADD/ADDHD and live a productive stress free life.

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