Overwhelmed by Organization Tasks

Q:

"I have a very hard time getting organized because one thing always seems to be contingent upon another. For example, I have a great bookcase but can't bring myself to use it — because I'm planning to move it to my daughter's room (eventually, after I get it painted). Any suggestions?"

ADHD expert Sandy Maynard helps your ADHD child learn basic skills sandymaynard.com Sandy Maynard
A:

Like many ADDers, you tend toward "circular" thinking. One task is connected to another, and another, and so on. Eventually, everything becomes connected in an overwhelming mess. The best way to interrupt that circular pattern is to insert a "starting point."

Instead of dwelling on what you can't do, identify what you can. From there, break your problem down into other manageable steps. For example, begin by moving the bookcase to the garage or porch where it will be painted. The next steps should flow from there - sanding it, buying the paint and brushes, and so on.

Watch out for perfectionism. Are you not doing something that can be done easily, just because you feel that you don't have time to do it the "correct" way? Ultimately, you must choose between "doing it" (even if imperfectly) and "not doing it" (and waiting and waiting until you have the time). If this is a hard decision for you, your delays may be rooted in a need for perfection. Take it from me: The world won't end if you don't do things perfectly.

Sandy Maynard lives in Washington, DC where she operates Catalytic Coaching. She was instrumental in the development of The National Attention Deficit Disorder Association's Coaching Guidelines and a founding board member for the Institute for the Advancement of AD/HD Coaching (IAAC). Sandy lectures internationally and is a regular contributor to ADDitude.

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