I first heard the phrase “ADHD is life on hard mode” from Brendan Mahan at ADHD Essentials. Having supported individuals with ADHD for a very long time, I hear a variation of this phrase often.
Although life is harder for an ADHD brain living in a non-ADHD brain world, there are some ADHD hacks that can offer support. Here are my ten favorites.
Time Timer: My go-to tool for helping individuals “see” the passage of time, increasing focus and self-regulation.
Kitchen Safe: Whether you are trying to stay away from M&Ms or your phone, the Kitchen Safe may be just the tool you are looking for.
FocusMate: Virtual body-doubling and co-working increase productivity and accountability. Many of my clients use FocusMate on a regular, some daily, basis to ensure they get the important things done.
Tile: Many of my clients swear by Tile (or similar tracking devices). Being able to find our important objects quickly (keys, wallet, medication, phones, etc.) save time, stress, and energy.
Sticky notes: As weird as it may sound, sticky notes are one of the best productivity tools. They can be used as visual reminders of tasks, used for kinesthetic prioritization, or to jot down a quick note so we don’t forget. And, not surprisingly, there is an app for sticky notes that several of my clients love!
Analog clocks: There is a big difference in time registration between analog and digital clocks. I encourage everyone to put analog clocks anywhere and everywhere. One client just forwarded a picture of his 12 analog clocks with the caption “Priceless.”
Fidgets: As contrary as it may sound, fidgeting increases levels of the neurotransmitters in the brain that control focus and attention. Finding the perfect fidget device for your personality and circumstances will happen via experimentation. ADDitude Magazine explains the why and how of how fidgeting helps maintain focus.
Pocket Journals: Our brains have so much to keep track of, we are often on mental overload. By offloading what’s bouncing around in our head to a reliable device, be it a small journal or an electronic note-taking device, we free our brains up to focus on more important tasks. I like these small journals as they can be kept nearly anywhere from a nightstand to a handbag without taking up too much space.
Planner Pad: Although not marketed as a planner for the ADHD brain, many of my clients have found this funnel format useful to manage their busy lives. Plus, Planner Pad offers a money-back guarantee if their system doesn’t work with your brain.
Timer Cap: Do you ever forget if you’ve taken prescribed medications? If so, the Timer Cap may be the solution. The cap displays the last time the bottle was opened, helping to prevent missed or duplicate doses.
Want more ADHD hacks? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s see how I can help.
Cindy Jobs, PCC, PCAC
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