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Tips For Getting Organized With ADHD

Tips For Getting Organized With ADHD
Want to become more organized at home or work but seem to struggle with prioritizing tasks, getting started, or feeling as if you aren’t organized enough? Those with an attention deficit disorder (ADD or ADHD) are particularly at risk of finding getting organized to be more difficult even while having some symptoms that would otherwise promote excellent organization.

It is important to note that there is no perfect way to be organized—set up your systems how you see fit. Small changes and certain tools can help bring major improvements to your organization.

Shorten Your To-Do Lists

Cap your to-do list at 5 items. Too many things can cause a distraction and an internal struggle over which task should hold priority. As an extra tip to avoid prioritization struggles – put each task on a piece of paper and draw it out of a hat (or cup or bowl). Complete the task, throw away the paper, and select a new task. If you finish all the tasks and are ready to handle more, write down another 5 and get started again.

Use Timers

Hyperfocus can be a good thing when it is something you badly need to do, like a work assignment, but can be less helpful when you end up on TikTok for a few hours. Set a timer or alarm to interrupt your hyperfocus moments. You can also ask a trusted friend or relative to call you at specific times to serve as your reminder to break focus.

Get A Body Double

Not like a clone to organize for you, but rather someone who will hang out around you while you work on a task or complete a to-do list. Your body double doesn’t have to do anything; their presence creates a productive atmosphere that can help drive your focus in a productive manner.

Get A Colorful Wallet

Black or brown wallets are easy to look over. More colorful wallets are much harder to misplace.

Reward Yourself

One way to keep motivation up when completing your to-do list is to reward yourself for completing tasks. Avoid buying “things” that will just add to clutter at home and instead spend your money on an experience.

Keep Magazines From Piling Up

If you are still working your way through last month’s issue and the next has already arrived, then establish this filtering system. Purchase a very small basket (one that can only hold a few magazines at a time). Keep your magazines in this basket and once it fills, make yourself the promise to trash (or recycle if you can!) what is in the basket. If you habitually don’t read a specific magazine and it just piles up, cancel it. You could also go digital. Many magazine brands have digital subscriptions.

Simplify Your Wardrobe

Too many clothes can make decision-making difficult. Ideally, if something new is purchased, something old should be removed. Pre-assembling the clothes you do have, even for just a week at a time, can help make choosing what to wear in the morning a breeze. You can also include accessories in your pre-assembly and once a month block out time to rematch outfits to cycle items around.

Organize Rooms Or Garage In Zones

One problem for those with ADHD in getting organized is getting too specific with item categorization. Instead, set up zones (broad categories) and use them to guide your organization. In a spare closet, set a zone for lines and use it to store any and all linens, even the ones for cleaning up nasty spills or drying the dog. In the garage, set a zone for gardening supplies and put all related tools in that area. Once everything is broadly sorted, you can tackle zone by zone and further your categorization and placement.

Have A Document “Hot Spot”

Set a brightly colored folder or tray in an obvious location—kitchen counter or desk. Somewhere it will be visible throughout your day. Inside the folder or tray is where you can store important tasks or paperwork, such as a bill that is coming due or a note to return a client’s phone call. This hot spot should be cleared out daily to make room for the next day’s important tasks.

If you have something semi-important or only slightly urgent, store them in a transparent file folder near the hot spot. It will remain in sight but not be highlighted by the bright color setting its priority.

Sort Your Mail Daily

Keep and go through your mail at a central location, ideally with a trash can and a shredder nearby. For optimal focus, set mail opening to a specific time of day so as to not interrupt other tasks. Immediately toss junk mail (you can be added to a “do not send” list with the Direct Mail Association). Shred bank statements after opening and reviewing them. Place bills in the transparent file folder (to move to the hot spot when the due date is approaching).

Further, your mail sorting organization by getting shelves, cubbies, or other similar features to store the mail belonging to others (like a spouse, child, roommate, or another resident). As you sort your mail daily, place their mail in their designated spot and let them handle taking care of it.

Get A “Clutter Companion”—or Better Yet, A White Knight!

When you need help getting started, establishing a system, or enhancing your existing methods, contact White Knight Organizing to come to the rescue and help you sort and organize your clutter.
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