ADHD and Time Management: Talk Yourself to Better Productivity

Ditching personal put-downs in favor of positive conversations with themselves will help attention deficit adults build confidence -- and accomplish more tasks.

Go Easy on Yourself


The fact is that your ADHD brain does not work well when it is under pressure. The fount of creativity dries up. Your wandering mind is a positive, not a negative. It is the ground in which the seeds of new thought are cultivated. Work at guiding your thoughts in the direction of your choice.

Next time you find yourself thinking about a deadline, try using these examples of self-talk:

  • “I am going to find out how ‘dead’ that deadline really is. I will ask about what will happen if I’m late. If lateness isn’t acceptable, I will rethink my commitment. Do I really want to do this?”
  • “Today, I am blocking out two hours for writing time. Regardless of how much I get done, I will stop at that point.”
  • “I have lots of ideas running around in my brain, but this doesn’t seem like the time to put the words down on paper. I’ll try later.”
  • “I know that, somehow, some time, a great article will emerge from this mental stew.”
  • “I’m bored with this project. I think I’ll go outside for a walk. The change of scenery will allow me to toss some ideas around.”

Talking to yourself as you would talk to your child, or someone else you love, works. You will get the job done -- faster and with less angst than you would if you had berated yourself. Although the words will sound strange at first, after a while, you may even begin to believe that all those nice things are true.

More on Coping with Adult ADHD:

5 Self-Esteem Boosters for ADHD Adults

Laugh It Off: Bouncing Back from Adult ADHD Flubs

3 Stress-Management Techniques For ADHD Adults

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TAGS: ADHD Time Management, Self Esteem, ADHD Coaching

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