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Procrastination Tips for ADHDers
5 Ways to Move the Needle When You’re Stuck
I write this as I’m knee-deep in procrastinating - so take this with a grain of salt… but in the spirit of trying new ways to work WITH my ADHD brain and not AGAINST it - I’m going to share a few tips that will sometimes help to move the needle when I’m in procrastination-land. Sometimes is better than nothing - and I’m learning to appreciate that sentiment more and more these days.
But first, a brief overview of why procrastination is such a big part of ADHD…
I want to mention here that although it’s highly relevant for ADHDers, procrastination is not officially acknowledged as an ADHD‐related symptom, which means it has not been medically reviewed to be classified as part of the DSM-5 criteria for ADHD.
When confronted with a task, people with ADHD may struggle to make decisions about how to begin and how to monitor their progress. Procrastination can act as a coping mechanism for ADHDers. A lot of it comes back to executive functioning - you can learn more about executive functioning by tuning into this episode of the My Lady ADHD Podcast featuring Executive Functioning Coach, Sarah Lovell: Listen Here
5 Tips for Navigating Procrastination:
Set a deadline - Work with someone close to you to help solidify a deadline. I like to tell a friend close to me that I’m going to show them my project by a certain date and schedule a call with them - it doesn’t work every time, but it can help to have that external deadline
Break up large tasks - My friend Jesse Anderson over athas given me the example of: Instead of writing “DO TAXES” on the to-do list, break it down in to smaller steps like “gather the documents needed for taxes” or “spend 10 minutes on taxes”
Do boring tasks with a body double - Save the boring tasks for when you have a body doubling session (usually a friend nearby or virtually, who’s working on something alongside you) Check out body doubling resources like Focus Mate or ADHD Social
Rewards!! - Offering yourself a prize for accomplishing a task effectively can motivate you to begin working on it. Doesn’t work for everyone and doesn’t work ALL the time, but again - we’re just adding these to our toolbox. ;)
Work in shorter bursts - Set a timer for 5 or 10 minutes and focus on getting started, not completing the task. Oh, and schedule in breaks. Often.
What procrastination tips would you recommend for your fellow ADHDers?
In other news…
Well, podcast day was yesterday. Ha! But, I’m still equally excited to share this week’s episode of the My Lady ADHD Podcast featuring my friend and ADHD Coach, Claire Twomey. Claire offers some great insight as to how to uncover your strengths as an ADHDer. This is an episode you don't want to miss
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