Archives for June 2016

Does Your Boss Make Your ADHD Worse?

Does Your Boss Make Your ADHD Worse?Bosses have a huge impact on ADHD adults’ ability to succeed in the work place. It all hinges on their personality and leadership style.

Have you noticed when you spend time with certain people, you feel smart, on the ball and performing at your best? Then with other people (perhaps those who you feel are critical or judgmental of you), you feel clumsy, ‘stupid’ and always messing up? It’s not your imagination. Researchers have evidence to support this!

I have seen many smart, intelligent ADHDers change completely when they get a new boss. They can be loving their job and excelling in their field; then with a new boss, they become almost a different person. Their confidence takes a hit and their performance crashes. They seem nervous and shaken on a daily basis. And it can all happen very quickly.

The 3 biggest reasons for this are if:

1. Your boss doesn’t recognize your strengths, and places a great emphasis on the things you aren’t good at. Usually, this is the ‘attention to detail’ things such as filling out reports and spreadsheets, etc.

2. They micro manages your every move. There are many ways to get a task done, and if you have ADHD, you are probably doing it in a way that your boss hasn’t considered before. However, if you are constantly being questioned and scrutinized, you start to question yourself and lose confidence in your ability.

3.     They are never around. This is the opposite of being micromanaged. If you have a question or need some guidance you can’t find them. If you do track them down, they ask you to come back later because now isn’t a good time. And there never seems to be a good time.

The best types of bosses for ADHDers are those who:

1.     Recognizes and appreciates your strengths.

2.     Doesn’t micro manage your every move. They want the job to be done, but doesn’t mind how you get there.

3.     Gives you room to be creative and autonomous.

4.     Is open to you adapting the workspace to suit you.

5.     Is worthy of your respect. If you admire and respect your boss, then you will move mountains to achieve anything.

6.     Isn’t bothered by small things like a messy desk; as long as you are performing well.

7.     Has an open, non-judgmental view of the world.

8.     Is even tempered.

9.     Is able to give praise when it’s due.

10.  Enjoys their job and that their passion spills over to everyone they report to.

11.  Offer some guidance, structure of framework so that you know exactly what is expected of you and when.

12.  Has time for you and is approachable.

Of course, bosses are human too, and different personalities are part of what makes the world an interesting place. It’s also easier to find fault with others than take responsibility for ourselves. However, many times when there isn’t a good fit between ADHDers and their bosses, it eats away at your self-esteem, ADHD symptoms get worse, you struggle with your work and blame yourself. It’s no one’s fault; it’s just not a good match. Much like dating, not everyone is a good fit for you.

What could you do?

1. Think back to a work environment where you were really excelled. What qualities did your boss have? These are the qualities that suit. You can use this knowledge when considering a new position.

2. When considering a new job, do some investigation into who your boss would be, and what their personality and leadership style is. That is just as important as the job description.

3. Consider changing jobs. If you are in a bad work environment right now, it’s ok to start looking for a new job. Many people don’t give themselves permission to change jobs until they have proven themselves at their current one. However, it will be much easier to prove yourself in an environment that is a positive one. Plus, getting a poor review at your current job can do a lot of damage to your self-esteem.

4.     If you had a boss you thrived under, consider contacting them ( Linked In is great if you have lost touch) and see if there are any opportunities for you to work together again.

What Is On Your ‘Don’t Do’ List?

018JCKYVRZThe Dont Do List idea comes from 2 articles I read that reframe the concept of productivity. Rather than productivity just being about what you Do, it is also about what you Dont Do.

ADHDers love to be productive; they will forfeit sleep, exercise and many other vital activities in order to get stuff done’.(Of course, sleep and exercise increase productivitybut that is a topic for another day).

It is a great feeling to start the day with a brand new To-Do list, but by the evening, you can feel very discouraged if you didn’t get to cross everything off.

This is where the ‘Dont Do’ list comes in.

The idea is that by saying no to little demands and distractions on your time, you will have lot more time to do the important, big picture tasks. The type of tasks that require focused concentration.

Your Don’Do list is different from your To-Do list as it remains fairly constant every day.

Here are some ideas to include on your Don’Do list:

1.     Dont eat sugar (donuts, cereal, etc.) for breakfast
You will have a sugar crash 2 hours later, which makes it harder to focus and pay attention to your tasks.

 

2.     Dont switch on the TV in the morning
It can grab your attention and make you late for work.

 

3.     Dont check your phone more than once per hour

 

4.     Dont multitask
It feels good, but it means getting less done; not more.

 

5.     Dont have your inbox open all day

 

6.     Dont act on every thought you have
Instead
, write the thoughts down so you dont forget them and continue with your task.

 

7.     Dont start a hyperfocus activity 
Unless you have a block of uninterrupted time, you could miss important meetings, etc.

 

8.     Dont have more than 3 tabs open on your computer at once

 

9.     Dont check Facebook until the evening

 

10.  Dont go to bed past midnight

 

It is surprising how quickly new ‘dont do’ habits become your new normal. One of my Don’Dos was “Dont use Snap Chat”, and in 2 weeks, I had practically forgotten I ever used it.

 

What is going to be on your Don’Do list?

 

 

Thanks, Jocelyn K. Glei and Jim Collins, for the great ideas.

 

10 Reasons Why ADHD Dads Are AWESOME

Dads and ADHD1. You Normalize ADHD

If you have ADHD, then there is a good chance one (or more) of your children has ADHD too. Children don’t like to be different; you might be the only person they know who has ADHD. By being open about your ADHD, you are normalizing it and even making it cool.

2.Hyper Focus

When you are hyper-focusing on your child or an activity you are doing together, they feel like the most special person in the world. The activity doesn’t matter. Listening to a story about their day, watching a movie together or working on a project in the garden, etc.; the attention you are giving is very powerful.

3. Emotional Intelligence

ADHDers are emotionally intelligent and they are sensitive (no matter how thick a crust they show the outside world), so you ‘get’ your children’s’ emotions. It is very validating and reassuring to a child to be understood.

4. Problem Solver

Problems can seem scary at whatever age you are. Having a Dad who is a natural problem solver is like carrying an ace in your back pocket.

5. Stands Up for the Under Dog

ADHDers have a strong moral compass and they aren’t afraid to vocalize that. You might be an advocate for your child at school, or you might use these skills for people you barely know. Either way, your child likes knowing you have their back and do good things in the world.

6. Good in a Crisis

When everyone else is panicky in a crisis, you become calm and instinctively know what to do. ADHDers excel in a crisis situation: car crash, fire, broken leg, etc.You handle the situation like a professional. This is very reassuring to your child.

7. Knowledgeable

ADHDers are life-long learners; which means you know a lot of things. You have an answer for every question your son and daughter ask. From ‘How far away is the moon?’ to ‘Why do worms live in the ground?’ and much, much more!

8. Role Model

By managing and treating your ADHD, you are setting a great example. Children are like sponges and observe everything you do and say. If you are being proactive in managing your ADHD, by exercising, taking omega 3, using tricks to help you with time-keeping and organizing, etc., they will do the same.

9. Passionate

Because it’s hard for ADHDers to do the things that are boring for them, they generally just do things that they are passionate about. Not only is it fun to be around this type of energy, it also inspires your children to find what they are passionate about.

10. Fun

You are a lot of fun. You don’t follow the rules, you make people laugh, have a good sense of humor, you think of fun things to do, and your enthusiasm for life is contagious

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nature and ADHD

ICRIA1E6DEDid You Know There is a Positive Link Between Spending Time In Nature and ADHD?

Researchers at the University of Illinois found that 20 minutes in nature (green therapy) helps reduce unwanted symptoms of Adult ADHD among its participants. One of the reasons why green therapy works is because when you and your brain is in a relaxed place, your voluntary attention decreases (goaldirected attention) and your involuntary attention takes over, so your brain can rest and refresh itself.

Good news for city dwellers! the benefits of being outside in a green area were present, whether the participants were in a city park or a remote rural setting.

There are all sorts of ways to incorporate green time into your day, from a gentle stroll to something more adventurous. Here is a list of some activities you can do to while you are spending time in nature.

1. A stroll or gentle walk

2. Bike riding

3. Inline skating / skateboarding

4. Horseback riding

5. Growing a garden

6. Hiking

7. Canoeing

8. Fishing

9. Running

10. Flying a kite

11. Camping

12. Gardening

13. Yoga or Tai Chi (outside)

14. Bird watching

15. Walking your dog

 

Depending on where you live and your lifestyle, some of these activities, you will only be able to do at the weekend, while others are more accessible and you can do them every day. If you aren’t used to being outside in a green setting, slowly integrate it into your life, until its part of your daily routine.

Remember, its important to be in a green setting and not just outside: The greener and more natural the environment, the bigger the reduction in ADHD symptoms.


Action Steps for Spending Time in Nature

1.     Have at least 20 minutes of green time a day (but there is no maximum).

2.     Try every item on the list once, just for fun.

3.     On days that you aren’t able to go outside, notice and compare how you feel and function to those days that you are outside.

How do you spend time in nature?

 

7 Ways Your Kitchen Timer Helps Your Productivity


A timer seems to be such a simple tool, that it is easy to overlook it in the hunt for a more complex solution. However, a simple kitchen timer can be your biggest friend and productivity partner.

Here are 7 ways your timer can help you

 

1.     Stops Procrastination

If you are feeling resistance to starting a task, set your timer for 5 minutes and say to yourself, I will just do it for 5 minutes, you can do anything for 5 minutes. Even the most boring, difficult or scary task.

When the timer goes off, you will probably feel a little annoyed because you were just getting into a groove. Next, set your timer for 10 minutes. Then, 15. Continue to increase the time by 5 minutes until you get to 30 minutes. If at any point you start feeling any reluctance or anxiety, then go back to 5 minutes again.

 

2.     Stops You from Feeling Overwhelmed

Working in shorttimed segments feels ‘doable. The stress and overwhelming feeling of not knowing where to start melts away. In the same way that a journey of a 1000 miles starts with one step. The way out of your overwhelm starts with 5 minutes.

 

3.     Keeps You Focused

If you are prone to jumping up every time to think of something, then your timer helps you to stay focused and on task. Any tasks that come to mind before the timer rings, write them down on a pad of paper besides you and promise you will take care of them later. The more you use your timer, the less you will think of other things while you are working on a task.

 

4.     Gives You a Sense of Accomplishment

Every time your timer goes off, you feel a sense of accomplishment; which is great because then, you get a shot of dopamine and feel motivated to do more. If you are working on a large project, where the finish line is far away in the distance, the timer provides pit stops along the way, where you get to feel proud of what you have done.

 

5.     Stops You from Feeling Scattered

If you look at your doto list and it is full of little unrelated tasks, your day can pass by and even though you are crossing things off, you feel scattered and unproductive. A timer gives your day structure. Look at your list and decide which tasks you are going to do in the next 30 minutes. Set your timer and work on those things. When the timer rings, have a mini break and set your goal for the next 30 minutes.

 

6.     Turn Tasks into a Game

When you are faced with boring tasks, using a timer can turn things into a game. Estimate how long you think something will take you, then set your timer and see if you can complete the task (without compromising your standards) in the time allotted or less. You can do this for anything: from paying a bill, to putting away your groceries.

 

7.     Helps You Get Your Housework Done

Your timer will help you with your housework too. Almost everyone I know with ADHD hates housework, but with your timers help, you can turn it into a fun game.

 

How do you use your timer?