The ADD Adult: Getting Things Done

The secret to getting things done if you are an adult with ADD is breaking tasks into small, manageable pieces.

You have no focus. You tend to procrastinate and have great difficulty staying on task long enough to finish a project. You start one project and jump to the next so many times that there is a trail of unfinished work behind you.  Whether or not you have been diagnosed with ADD (attention deficit disorder) or ADHD (attention deficit hyeractivity disorder), your inability to concentrate can have a devastating effect on your career and your personal life. 

1) Make and use lists. Many people do not like being tied down to a to-do list but sometimes it is the most effective tool you can use. It keeps you on track, lays out the day's activities, and gives you a record of what you've accomplished.The feeling of accomplishment when you look at all the tasks you have crossed out during the course of the day will motivate you to stay on track even more.

2) Breakdown tasks into small pieces. When writing your list, don't assign yourself an hour-long project to do. Break it down into ten-minute increments. You'll be surprised at how much easier and more satisfying it is to do a report or finish a budget when you are able to take a break in between and do other things. 

3) Reward yourself.When you finish a block of tasks, take a walk, get yourself a special treat, or just give yourself a breather. Pat yourself on the back every time you complete a project that in the past you would have had extreme difficulty with or not finished at all.

5) Some say to write out your goals once a year and review them often. Others advise you to list them twice a year and post  them where you can see them everywhere you turn. To those of you who fight to stay focused for even five minutes, the best advise it to write out your short term goals every day.  It sounds like a lot but it isn't.  Just take a few minutes every morning and list your goals for that day. The next day they may be the same or be completely different. It doesn't matter - it will help you stay on target with what you want to accomplish. 

6) Write out one-year, five- year, and ten-year goals once a year.  When you have longterm goals, you can look at your daily ones and make sure that at least some are assisting you in achieving them. If your daily list has absolutely no relation to your longterm goals, you are probably spinning your wheels.  

Simple solutions such as these will take you a long way toward completing your projects and work assignments. And don't just limit these tools to your workplace - they are just as effective at home in assisting you in keeping your house, yard, and life organized.   


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