Reply To: Losing it


Hi 2Wheelz, thanks for sharing that! I’m very visual too; I use an app called Trello. It helps me to storyboard activities so I can remember previous decisions I made about things I want to do or have made commitments to do. I have also written out a ‘standard day” for each day of the week. This includes all the things I NEED to do each day; so it gives me structure. I use the free version of the app.

I also use “Simple mind” – this is a mind-mapping app. When I’m either problem-solving or musing about something, I can jot down the initial idea and all the subsequent ideas that flow from it. I then have a visual map of my thoughts. The app also allows me to produce a list with all the hierarchies of ideas in place – this looks like a contents list for a book or an outline for a word-processor document. It is much simpler to look at than to describe in text.

I enjoy doing presentations but now I’m concerned that I may lose my train of thought, because a new idea will occur to me while delivering the presentation. I recently did my ‘Father of the Bride” speech and was doubly concerned, as above. I used an app called “Teleprompter Lite”, which enabled me to type the speech and then scroll it a comfortable rate. If I was distracted or went off on a tangent, I could then find my place again. All went well. This is a free app.

I’m also getting to grips with GTD by David Allen. GTD stands for Getting Things Done and is a highly visual methodology for capturing, prioritising and carrying out ideas, tasks, commitments etc in a systematic way to minimise surprises / forgotten tasks. It’s like leaving something at the foot of the stairs, so that next time you walk up them, you remember to take the item with you – all very practical. The weekly review is a very useful tool. He has a TED Talk on YouTube which is poignant and entertaining. He also has a book on GTD plus the audiobook on Audible.

I often will read a book on the Kindle app while listening to the audiobook and this “immersive” way of reading helps with concentration and retention; the written text is highlighted and in sync with the audiobook. NB If you buy the kindle book first, you will usually be offered the Audible audiobook at a fraction of the list price.

A more general help which I’ve found, is to use the “Headspace” app. This is a meditation app which helps you to train your brain to be more aware of tasks as your doing them (or appreciate the world around you more when you’re not working!). This awareness or ‘Mindfullness’ helps to reduce the mental chatter of AD(H)D by noticing it, observing it with a gentle curiosity, and then re-focusing attention again. Having acknowledged a stray thought it becomes less insistent at grabbing your attention. 10 mins per day is very useful and the benefits far outweigh the time invested.

I’ve also improved my cognitive skills by learning French, using the “Duolingo” app. It is very repetitive and reinforces practice for any errors and is also encouraging in its outlook. This “routine” approach is useful as AD(H)D does respond to routine.

I hope this helps. I also have CFS / ME (Chronic Fatigue syndrome / Myalgic Encephalomyelitis), so I need to manage my reduced energy levels very carefully. All of the above has also helped here too. Bon chance!