When you have ADHD, living in intention takes a little practice. Sometimes your attention gets hijacked and you can end up spending a lot of time doing something that you didn’t even set out to do in the first place. Part of living a balanced life is learning to do a little of this and a little of that along with the lot of what you love to do.
Creating balance requires an intentional allocation of your greatest resource, your time. I’ve heard people say that if you’re experiencing a lot of stress and your life seems out of balance, it may be time to readjust your priorities. This, then, sends people into a tizzy choosing one activity over another and they never fully fix anything. The stress is still there with a little dash of guilt thrown in.
If you work 8 – 10 hours a day, come home to family chaos and responsibility, therefore, never having any alone time to focus on something that brings you joy, how can you un-prioritize any of that? If this is how you feel, then readjusting priorities may seem like a concept only possible for people who can afford to just sit at home all day. In your life, there may not be room for additional activities or for swapping one over another.
So, what if instead, you balance your time by doing one thing intentionally at a time. Now this may seem like the same thing, but it doesn’t feel that way. You can do everything you want to but there are two tricks involved:
- Predetermine what you do. If you read a book, don’t get sucked into reading all of it, read only one chapter and put it down. If you need to go grocery-shopping stick to buying only what’s on the list. Take the dog for a walk to a set point and then return. Watch the television show you like and then turn it off.ADHD-friendly tip: You may benefit from stating out loud your intention before you begin an activity.
- Kill two birds with one stone. Want more exercise? Park the car far from the store entrance or use stairs instead of escalators. If you leave the house on an errand, make sure to do two or three while you’re out, not just one. Listen to a podcast you enjoy while cooking dinner.ADHD-friendly tip: You may use some of your multi-tasking skills on some things that don’t require your full attention, like watering plants while talking on the phone.
By predetermining what you do versus getting sucked into an endless amount of time on an activity, you intentionally spend your time. You’ll not only get so much more done, you’ll feel so accomplished every day. Incorporating activities together saves time and mentally allows you to do some things you don’t like without a great deal of extra effort. You can be totally creative creating a balance you didn’t know was possible. I’d love to hear how you do!