Is Your To-Do List Out of Sync with Your Values? That’s a Problem.

When to-dos pile up and busyness corrodes every side of life, “time” feels much less like a ticking clock and extra like an oppressive, cruel tyrant hell-bent on distress. The time tyrant is at all times pushing us to work harder, transfer quicker, and do extra, more, extra — even supposing we hardly ever have sufficient hours in the day to accomplish anything else at all.

In our bustling global, nearly everybody is underneath the thumb of the time tyrant. But other folks with ADHD — who incessantly struggle with the large set of abilities known as “time management” — feel extra oppressed than do their peers. On best of that, detrimental exterior messages — being criticized for being “lazy” or “now not making an attempt,” for starters — infiltrate the ADHD brain, creating further power to paintings even quicker, take on more tasks, and get much more performed. This force is more than simply mental; if left unchecked, it might probably critically have an effect on a particular person’s bodily and emotional well being.

We’re human beings, now not human doings — and obeying the time tyrant’s each and every whim gained’t fulfill us. But how are you able to throw off the yoke of time and rediscover what in reality makes you happy? It’s about a lot more than just time-saving guidelines and tricks — despite the fact that those can no doubt be useful. Before you'll apply them, on the other hand, you must reframe your dating to time and ponder what in reality provides your life that means. Here are 6 ways to get started.

1. Examine Your Thoughts

Thoughts marinate in our heads every waking moment, morphing into feelings, assumptions, and movements. The drawback is that those ideas aren’t all the time rooted in truth. When our feelings or actions practice an unfair or flawed thought, we forfeit the danger to reside in line with our fact.

People with ADHD get stuck in adverse thought cycles. These ideas building up over years of external messaging from folks, teachers, and friends, but they aren’t necessarily true. And with a view to damage the cycle, you will have to glance significantly at your negative thoughts and replace them with fairer, more encouraging mantras.

[Free Resource: How Are You Spending Your Time?]

The subsequent time you catch yourself considering, “I’ll by no means get this done in time” — step again and believe the root of that idea. Is it function fact, or is it the outcome of years of unfavorable messaging? Pay particular attention to your ideas surrounding time, and take a look at your easiest to reframe damaging thoughts. “I all the time procrastinate” will also be was “I haven’t always managed my time nicely up to now, however I will take steps to do higher this time.”

This received’t be easy — adverse concept patterns run deep! Sometimes, your mind simply won’t permit you to positively reframe a destructive thought. That’s k; even attempting to inspect the idea, and regularly checking in on negative spirals, can put your brain on the trail to more certain and productive thinking patterns.

2. Rethink Your To-Do List

A well-maintained to-do list is a crucial device for preserving track of tasks and day by day duties. But it’s simple for anyone with ADHD to grow to be a slave to a to-do list — both by means of allowing it to take away all spontaneity from life, or by letting it grow so massive that it becomes an unmanageable burden. It was once a take-heed call for me, for instance, when my daughter glanced at my to-do list — and used to be surprised to discover that it contained 92 pieces. At that point, I noticed I used to be no longer the usage of my list as a solution to organize my time. It had trapped me.

When we rush around obeying a to-do list, we deprive ourselves of the opportunity to mirror on our choices and to find which means in our lives. Take a few minutes to look at your to-do list and consider how it’s getting used. Are most of the pieces stuff you want to do, or are they stuff you have to do? Are they things you neither need nor wish to do, however have convinced your self you will have to do? Purge the “shoulds” from your to-do list every time possible — and make sure there’s a healthy steadiness between tasks you will have to do and those you need to do.

If a to-do list is helping you, there’s no reason to abandon it — or even dramatically alternate how you employ it. The function of this workout is simply to examine your priorities and reframe the way you set up your time.

[Free Webinar Replay: It’s About Time: Understanding the Science of Time Management with ADHD

The velocity of day by day life can pressure us to live reactively, somewhat than proactively and in the intentional pursuit of growth. Interrupting this speed takes paintings — particularly for somebody with ADHD, who faces additional inner and external demanding situations when it comes to slowing down.

Unplugging from the velocity of day by day existence doesn’t need to imply a retreat on a faraway mountaintop. It can also be a five-minute “vacation,” the place you don’t look at your phone or take a look at your e mail. I urge my clients to spend a minimum of one hour a week outdoors, doing not anything at all. Watching the clouds go by means of for an hour will let you realize issues about yourself — a interest you gave up, or a dream that were given buried underneath daily busyness.

4. Write It Out

Taking the time to write in a journal — without regulations, goals, or even a explicit agenda — can help you better perceive what you wish to have from your life and the way your energy could be higher spent. Even 10 mins of writing, 2 or 3 times a week, could make a large have an effect on on your well-being and support your sense of self. 

If you’re now not a natural creator, don’t power yourself to slog through a daily session of journaling. Instead, take a look at other ways to collect and express your ideas, like designing a collage or becoming a member of a local support crew. Even something as simple as beginning a Pinterest board of your favourite inspirational quotes can paintings magic for organizing or uncovering your deep-seated emotions.

5. Reframe Mistakes

A mistake is not a black mark on your soul. In a easiest global, a mistake is a likelihood to be told and grow. Unfortunately, our results-driven tradition has little patience for mistakes, and somebody with ADHD who has made her fair share may understandably feel that her errors make her a failure.

But you’re now not a failure, and there’s no wish to beat your self up over previous errors. Instead, work to reframe them as opportunities — alternatives to acknowledge patterns, opportunities to make better alternatives, alternatives to higher perceive your wishes. If you’re hung up on a past mistake, step again and ask, “How may just I consider this differently? What can I learn from this?”

Often, this reframing will permit you to realize that preserving directly to an historical error is best maintaining you back. Deciding to let move of previous errors is a liberating feeling, and opens the door for positivity, self-improvement, and higher self-esteem.

6. Let Go of “Strategies”

Most time-management advice for people with ADHD revolves around “guidelines and tricks” — designing the very best to-do list machine, or finding the one app that can remedy your productivity issues. These equipment have their place, and will lend a hand individuals who combat to take regulate of their time. But they’re not the end-all, be-all of life, and depending too much on them can distract us from our higher purpose.

My advice? Don’t get started with “strategies.” Start as an alternative with your values. What are your biggest priorities? What do you want from existence? Who do you hope to change into? Asking yourself, “If the whole lot else went away, what would I now not wish to lose?” is intentional to self-growth. Strategies can (and can) come later — but best the discovery of your values can put you at the path to your most very best self.

[Getting Things Done — Without Getting Bogged Down]


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