The truth is, being productive with ADHD is not that different from being productive without it. You just have to know your own mind and how it works, and then you can use that information to help yourself get things done. For example, I’m a morning person; if something gets in the way of my morning routine, I’ll be miserable until I get back on track (or at least until lunch). However, if there’s something I need to do after lunchtime or in the evening—like write blog posts or edit photos—I might find myself procrastinating because it doesn’t fit into my “natural rhythm”. It’s all about knowing yourself and making adjustments so that both sides are happy!
Check off the easy stuff first.
The first step is to identify the easy stuff. Easy stuff is anything that you can do in a few minutes, like checking your email, or adding an appointment to your calendar. Easy stuff doesn’t require much mental energy or concentration because it’s not new information or something that requires creativity or complex reasoning skills. It’s just busy work—a way to check off that box on your to-do list so you can move on with more important things. The key here is not spending too much time on this kind of thing; don’t let yourself get distracted by pressing “refresh” over and over again while waiting for new emails from coworkers who are late sending them (oh wait…).
Organize your day based on your energy level.
One of the most important things to do is to plan your day based on your energy level. If you are tired, take a break and do something else. If you are energized, use that energy to do something important. And if you are in the middle of the day, then you’re probably ok!
Schedule in time for socializing.
You might think that socializing is a waste of time, but it’s actually very important when you have ADHD. It can help you feel less isolated, which is an issue for many people with the disorder. It also helps reduce stress and improve your mood.
It’s important to remember that socializing isn’t just about hanging out with friends—it’s about building relationships in all areas of life, including work and family. A good support network can keep you grounded and motivated when things get tough at work or home (and yeah, people with ADHD tend to have more of those than other folks).
You don’t need to be around people all day long—you just need some human contact every once in awhile!
Plan for interruptions, and give yourself time to unwind between tasks.
Before you begin any task, make sure you have time to relax and unwind. You need to carve out time for yourself between work tasks so that you can rest, eat and sleep.
Don’t try to do too much at once. And don’t forget that interruptions happen all the time; plan for them by scheduling your day with blocks of uninterrupted work time. When someone needs something from you, send them an email saying when they can expect a response or meeting—and stick to that commitment! This way, everyone knows how long it will take for them to get their questions answered (or tasks completed) which leaves no room for ambiguity or frustration later on down the line when things start piling up unexpectedly due to unforeseen circumstances outside of our control (like unexpected phone calls).
Turn off digital distractions.
To be productive, turn off notifications. Most modern smartphones have the capability to mute or turn off notifications for specific apps. If you’re like me, these settings are probably set up so that your email and text messages show up immediately but everything else has to wait until I’ve had a few minutes to check them. Sadly, this is not very helpful in my line of work: I need immediate access to emails from clients, so when my phone goes off every three minutes for Facebook likes and Snapchat streaks and Instagram comments about how great my friend’s dog looks in this picture…well…I start getting anxious about being prompt with responses, which then makes me more likely to ignore all those other things going on around me that require my attention instead of checking Facebook again because we just got into the middle of an argument about who was supposed to bring snacks for movie night last night and now everyone’s mad at each other because no one wants pizza anymore but they really do want pizza even though they said they didn’t want it before lunchtime when I asked them if anyone wanted pizza after school today just now while she was looking at pictures on her phone while eating lunch alone by herself yesterday afternoon at school cafeteria table number 2B1C5D6E8G9H***ENDWRITE
Make sure you know what you need most, and give yourself what you need.
At the end of the day, what’s most important is that you know what you need. Because if you don’t know what it is, how can anyone else?
You need to know your strengths and weaknesses. You need to be able to assess where your talents lie and where they don’t; that way, when someone asks for help or advice on something related to their own challenges with productivity, you can offer them solutions based on your own experience.
You also need to know what makes you happy as an individual: does being around people make me feel good? Do I like working in groups or alone? What do I do well out of all the things there are for me to do? What am I good at doing? How can I use those skills more often than not? And last but not least—what will make me feel healthy both physically and mentally?
If you’re an ADHDer, you know that sometimes it can feel like a struggle just to get through your day. But this doesn’t mean that you should give up on productivity altogether. There are ways to make yourself more productive and less stressed out than ever before! The key is knowing when it’s okay to take breaks from what you were doing in order to recharge yourself so that when it comes time again, you can do more work than ever before