How Much Time Do You Have?
I've been working with clients on time management for over a decade. It's one of those core issues for people with ADHD. The thing is, I hardly even noticed that I had been working successfully with people on the same types of strategies over and over again, because it is such an integral part of our lives- and such a key challenge.
Here's one central principle: find out how much time you actually have.
People with ADHD experience time differently than other people. Most of my clients agree that they experience time as "now or NOT now," and don't have a good sense of anything else. It means all the steps and all the hours and stages of planning are glossed over completely in the mind- there is now and there is the end product of a task or project- and nothing in between.
In order to take charge of time and plan effectively, we need to find the in between. We are not wired this way, but our society is. So we need to practice.
A calendar is one tool in this practice. Not the "perfect" calendar, just one that works for knowing how much time you have between now and a deadline. You take the calendar, and actually go through how much time you have between now and the end date and time. I've done this with students and teachers and all kinds of people and found— this helps structure time immensely. People go from thinking they have two weeks to seeing there are two days available for their work in those two weeks- and during those days, they only have 8 hours to actually work.
And that is a beginning to real, useful planning.
Because it makes such a huge difference to so many people with ADHD, I'll be working on time management in a new small group coaching program. If you are interested in joining us, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You'll have the benefit of hearing others working through similar issues- and a lower cost than individual coaching.