“If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk?” ~ Albert Einstein
I think this is the reason there are always too many tabs strung out across the top of my browser. I’ve seen people laugh out loud at the number of tabs I tend to have along the top of my (Chrome or Firefox) screen. Is it MY fault that bloggers (and others) now put lots of links into their posts/articles that are often worth clicking on and exploring?
My new strategy for tidying up and closing down tabs is to simply copy and paste link addresses on to a Wordpad file (under various headings) that sits in a dedicated folder that’s permanently on my desktop. Simply bookmarking websites and blogs (even into subject folders) somehow doesn’t do it for me. It’s one of those ‘out of sight out of mind’ things. At least I can SEE a ‘websites to visit’ folder on the desktop – whenever I can actually see the desktop that is. Damn!
Anyway – where was I going with this before I got seriously distracted? Oh yes – today I woke up thinking I needed to follow through with some thoughts about ADHD – Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder – which is a topic I touched on in yesterday’s post. Having been told by a couple of young people last week that they’ve been able to cope with their ADHD by using various learned strategies (after refusing to take Ritalin) I thought I’d look for places on the Internet that describe ADHD coping strategies. Which is how I ended up at ANDREA\’S BUZZING ABOUT:
This is a wonderful piece, and even if you’re not terrifically interested in ADHD I recommend you take a look at it.
There’s an epidemic of kids with AD/HD? Not really. That such a large percentage of students are now requiring various accommodations does not mean that we have a greater number of “damaged” children. Rather, it means that we have more students who are actually getting diagnosed as not being able to learn the same way as most of their peers. [3Di emphasis]
Within this post there are lots of intriguing links to things like
The Fine Art of Fidgeting
Losing Something in the Dreaded Safe Place
Maslow Cleans House
The Taxonomy of Mess (which is where I came across the Einstein quote at the top of this piece)
Not all kinds of “messiness” are the same.
Some kinds of mess are the healthy, happy exuvia [Andrea is a scientist] of just living and doing lots of things. It’s the pieces of the ongoing sewing project, stacks of references for a writing assignment, travel guides and ephemera to trips past and future, and lines of shoes and piles of jackets ready by the front door.
The surfaces are visual storage and reminder areas, helping us organise what we are thinking and working on. They are ergonomically useful both cognitively and physically (think of all the time and effort that would be wasted repeated putting things away and taking them right back out again hours later). If I can find things on my over-full tabletop that serves as my desk, that means it is a workable working-system.
The surfaces are also visual synthesis areas – having a variety of things out helps jog the creative process.
I feel so much better after reading this, and the rest of this post by Andrea.
I can now get on and tackle my next tasks for today, including cleaning the house and tidying the garden. Now where’s that list I made?
Maslow Cleans House
This How-To post is dedicated to a pal of mine who was commenting about how hard it is to get the apartment (flat) tidied and cleaned up. I was trying to describe how I used Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, natural supports, and the Premack Principle together as means for organising this most mundane set of chores.
In this case, we don’t mean that housekeeping is “hard” in the sense of physically mopping a floor, but hard in the sense of figuring out where to start, how to keep the momentum going, getting the job finished, and even figuring out what to do with stuff. The so-called “executive functions” of planning, execution, self-monitoring et cetera are not limited to office work – they are just as necessary in the realm of what used to be referred to (somewhat tongue-in-cheek) as “domestic engineering”.
Strangely enough, I had another thought on waking up today which was to start posting some ideas about Abraham Maslow’s study of highly effective human beings, and some more thoughts on spiritual intelligence. Oh well. That’s one for tomorrow.
As you recognize the symptoms of adult ADHD, you can work on coping strategies that can help you keep your life in order. Some adult ADHD coping strategies include the following:
Establish routines because they are very important. Figure out what you have to do on a daily basis and do it the same way, at the same time, every day. Create a routine for going to bed, waking up, getting ready for work, etc. Routines are very helpful in handling ADHD in the workplace, too.
Ask your spouse, boss, and others to repeat and/or write down instructions if you don’t understand them.
Learn how to keep lists so that you stay on track. Write down what you need to do today, what you should buy at the store, when your appointments are, who you need to call, etc. If possible, keep all your lists in the same booklet or planner and have it with you constantly.
Use post-it notes to remind yourself of things you need to do.
Have a quiet area at work and at home to get things done. Avoid distractions like TV, games, computers, etc.
Use a watch or timer with an alarm that will get you back on task.
Eat a healthy diet, follow an exercise plan you enjoy, and get plenty of sleep.
While it appears that adults don’t “grow out” of ADHD, adults with ADHD are typically less hyperactive and more mature than children with ADHD, plus adults tend to be more receptive to behavior therapy for ADHD. Therefore, you as an ADHD adult can have a happy, successful life, especially if you stick to the coping skills that promote balance and harmony.
Here are some addresses of pages that I haven’t yet as read:
http://www.helpguide.org/mental/adhd_add_adult_strategies.htm (Some thoughts here about recognising emotions, taking exercise and spending time outdoors enjoying sunshine and natural environments – surely things we should all be doing?)
And to think I’d simply thought I had Life’s Too Short To Do Lots of Boring Stuff Disorder.
All comments and further information from 3Di readers are much appreciated.
How come there’s no mention of the usefulness of meditation in any of these coping strategies?
The definition of ADHD is based on behaviour and it does not imply a neurological disease. ADHD is classified as a disruptive behavior disorder along with oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder and antisocial personality disorder.
Methods of treatment often involve some combination of behavior modification, life-style changes, counseling, and medication. A 2005 study found that medical management and behavioral treatment is the most effective ADHD management strategy, followed by medication alone, and then behavioral treatment. While medication has been shown to improve behavior when taken over the short term, [it has] not been shown to alter long-term outcomes.