October 2, 2018 at 3:34 pm #100695
I have not been diagnosed but I seem to have difficulty doing the most simple normal things. The more i read about this the more I think it is me in so many ways.
I have a decent job that requires great attention to detail but not too much social interaction. It suits me well.
But when it comes to home family life I really struggle. I just can’t get organised. I can never ever think of what meals to have and as a result we eat repetitively alot and definitely not healthily enough! I don’t seem to be able to plan more than a day at a time so end up going to supermarket every day.! Sometimes I just wander round not knowing what on earth to buy for the family and I feel panicky so i just grab a pizza and leave. I feel so guilty that I’m not doing my best nutritionally for my family but they are so fussy it’s so hard to come up with 7 meals that we all like.
I’m similarly useless with household tasks. I will put washing in and then forget to take it out so then it smells and have to wash it again. I can’t keep on top of the washing so then my kids end up running out of clean vests, socks etc.
I waste far too much time online looking for the perfect solutions to home organisation and then never have enough time to do any of it! I am a bad mum as I am often so busy looking things up on line that I miss what my daughter is saying to me or I don’t get on with jobs I should be doing around the house.
There seems to be loads of life admin from schools etc to deal with. Sometimes I lose a bit of paper or forget things although I am good at putting things on the wall calendar and in my phone.
I struggle getting up in the morning and so don’t always have time to have a shower and feel all rushed and am often running late. I set 3 alarms and still can’t get up!
I just feel that I’m not being the best mum that I could be but I just can’t seem to do it all. I look at some of the other mums and they always look immaculate as do their kids and they’re cooking healthy meals from scratch every day and doing everythinv so well.
Does anyone have any advice at all? Sometimes I wonder if I’m just lazy but it’s as if I’m always searching (online) for the perfect life organisation answers but never find them. I realise if I wasted less time on this I might be able to achieve more but I still don’t think i’d have clue how to do it all well. I don’t want to let my kids down but I find motherhood doesn’t come naturally to me!
October 2, 2018 at 5:32 pm #100715
Wow!! You pretty much just summed up my life right now!! (Minus the job, I’m home with 3 kids under 5)
I have no advice, but knowing there is someone else who can relate is a slight relief, especiially coz I never seem to be able to explain things properly.
Ps. I signed up just now solely to have the ability to comment on your post (in reality I probably should have signed up 2 hours ago.. maybe then I wouldn’t have 78 tabs open right now.. ha, still would)
October 15, 2018 at 12:41 pm #101508
I don’t have any wonderful new advice (I second Fly lady-she alone kept me sane through an adoption that added 7 new members to our family of 6)The struggle is real, but you are NOT lazy. Undiagnosed ADHD is a real problem. ! choose not to get diagnosed and medicated for same. I have MS and am stuggling to regain my health un medicated so don’t want to add that medication to the mix. I did find a bit of relief with cbd oil. You are working harder than most people and doing OK. That’s not lazy!!!
October 15, 2018 at 2:28 pm #101551
I’m in a similar situation- three kids- though there is another parent in the house, which helps a lot. But like any relationship, a lot falls to me.
My best advice is PUT.EVERYTHING.ON.YOUR.CALENDAR! No matter how trivial it seems, when you forget to do it, it becomes non-trivial very quickly! Do the dishes- shop for towels- fix my glasses- meet my son at school- Everything. I use my phone as much as I can like a personal organizer- and it has become absolutely essential to my quality of life!
Another thing I use is timers. If something needs to be checked in 5, 10, 30 minutes- I set a timer. Also I use a timer to keep on task at work. I use the Pomodoro technique- 20 minute (though I started with 10!!!) work intervals, followed by a 5 minute break. I’ve become so much more productive with that technique!
Good luck! You’ve got a lot to juggle. But with a little tech support, you can do it!
October 2, 2018 at 7:21 pm #100721
HAHAHA me three my life exactly! But also without a job! Im a single parent 4 kids my 9 year old boy has ADHD/ODD my younger son and daughter are also waiting to go through all the assessments for ADHD……. Life is HECTIC¡¡!! Glad I’m not alone!
October 3, 2018 at 5:20 am #100732
Have you guys tried Flylady?
October 3, 2018 at 3:57 pm #100801
I tried Flyday a few years ago and was bombarded with emails. Couldn’t keep up so didnt carry on. Same with everything. I have a whole shelf of drself help books on how to be organised but I never finish reading any of them!!
October 5, 2018 at 11:01 pm #101025
Using Flylady was much easier when I reduced the amount of daily email, and added the cleaning calendar to the online calendar that works for me .
What works for me is the positive encouragement, and having a system where I “just do, don’t think.” The cute names and no-nonsense approach make it a good match.. but yes, all the emails stress me out and I “break up” with flylady from time to time.
But looking at my dining room table, it looks like I need to go back!
October 11, 2018 at 3:36 am #101294
October 9, 2018 at 9:42 pm #101191
Me too! I have a very demanding job, a four year old hurtling toward his own ADD diagnosis, and find parenting and household organization the greatest challenge in my life. You are not alone! I am trying to accept that I am who I am and stop trying to hide my mess from the world. I’ve avoided inviting other kids over to play but now I’m just admitting that I’m ADD and trying to stop apologizing for it.
October 10, 2018 at 3:56 am #101195
@Honey18: you can give Flylady Sytem another try. Just stick to the very basics. What I found very helpful in her system are the Zones and the routines. Forget her encouragements and the motivations, they are just the icing on the cake. If you can tweak the system and make it yours. It helped me a lot when I was experiencing depression due to PTSD, and wasn’t diagnosed yet with ADD. Add to that I had a newborn then that needed a lot of doctors’visits and physical therapies, and in a new country(Central Europe) not knowing the language, with husband who was finishing University that time. Now my child is almost finished with senior high school, and I am now studying medicine. Her system keeps me sane. It’s not perfect but it works. Another good thing with the system is you can always pick up where you left off. Good luck to you!
October 10, 2018 at 10:06 am #101215
First, you are not a bad mum! You are struggling and spending time looking for solutions precisely because you are a caring parent who wants the best for your family! Here are a few things that have helped me:
1. Diagnosis & treatment: I was diagnosed in my 30’s, before kids. I started medication therapy & tried several meds before settling on Concerta. I went off Concerta while pregnant & nursing which was really hard. Occasionally now I stop taking it and always go back on when I realize how unmanageable my life has become. Concerta also helps with my anxiety, since I can function and don’t feel so overwhelmed. Meds don’t work for everyone but for me it’s really helped.
2. Planning that acknowledges my needs & preferences: I try to balance day to day life with some routine & some spontaneity. My ADD brain hates to be constrained by something so mundane as a plan! If my ADD wasn’t “managed” I’d flow through each day from one spontaneous impulse to the next. Unfortunately this creates stress & anxiety since I have to interact with the rest of the world! I try to stick to routine for anything related to external schedules – getting up, ready, and to work/school on time. For things over which I have more control I plan loosely, to combine organization with room for spontaneity. I hate meal planning, and chafe at deciding what to eat for Thursday dinner on Sunday. Instead I cook a few big batches over the weekend of fairly healthy things we like and reheat and/or freeze well. Then we have choices, but avoid the drag of daily shopping/cooking. Cooking methods that don’t need precise timing are ideal – long slow oven or slow cooking, and I love my electric pressure cooker – it’s fast and I can walk away & forget about it without ruining the meal. I shop for fresh veggies (pre-prepped salad or convenience items ready to cook – cost more but save money over throwing away food I forgot to cook) & fruit to round out meals.
Morning Routine: Get as much done as possible the night before. My day is guaranteed to have a smoother start if lunch is made & clothes picked out. My ADD preschooler is going through a “dress by himself in outlandish outfits he chooses himself” phase, so I try to respect it. I let him watch a video while eating breakfast if he sticks to other parts of the morning routine which gives me a little sanity to get ready. Pick your battles and, even better, avoid them by doing the most stressful things in advance when possible.
3. Household chores: I’m a binger with cleaning, organizing, taking care of the garden, etc. so things usually go undone until I find energy & focus to tackle them. I would prefer to master a routine (like flylady) but haven’t achieved this yet. I focus on keeping up with cleanliness, despite the clutter (clean bathrooms, vacuum/sweep & mop floors, change bedding, laundry, etc.). I often have big piles of laundry washed & dried but not folded or put away, so it isn’t perfect, but less stressful than nothing clean to wear. I purposely bought a drier with a steam dewrinkle cycle and use it often. I never got into flylady, but really like the “slob blog” and related books by Dana White.
4. Be realistic: Stop reading organizing solutions designed by people who don’t understand ADD. They usually have the opposite effect. Read all you can about organizing for ADD (Organizing Solutions for People with ADHD by Susan Pinsky is good for everyday household organization – it completely changed my perspective on why most of the popular organizing strategies weren’t working for me).
October 15, 2018 at 8:29 am #101484
Hi you are not alone. My best advice is figure out the things that are going to make you sad/mad at yourself and set alarms not reminders in your phone about them. “Change the laundry so it does not smell” “Buy chicken rice vegetables to make casserole to eat Monday and Tuesday of this week” if you put emotion in your alarm description it will hit your heart and you will get up and do it. And once I put laundry in a set an alarm, again not a reminder, to change the laundry in one hour so I don’t forget. And most importantly if the alarm goes off and you cannot deal with it right then, reset the alarm time for 30 minutes later or 45 minutes later when you can deal with it. Even though I just gave you all this “advice“ I would also say figure out what works for you because it’s going to be different then what works for someone else. So try what intrigues you about all these posts and see if they make your life easier. Good luck and God Bless ❤️
October 15, 2018 at 9:20 am #101487
That about sums up my life Honey18! I have ADD and anxiety so I’m often paralyzed with a million things to do but I find myself wandering aimlessly around the house instead. I’ll start 5 different tasks then never finish any of them and feel so defeated that I often just don’t bother.
I have to say, as much of a pain it is to plan meals ahead of time, healthy eating does seem to help my mental health. I usually take medicine but am currently pregnant and not on anything!
With the laundry, I stopped leaving the room. I bought a massage chair and noise canceling headphones (pricey but worth it for cutting out distracting sounds and my own thoughts). I put a load in, sit in my chair and practice breathing techniques or guided meditations I find on youtube. When the buzzer goes off 30 minutes later I switch the loads and then try to tackle another task. And if I forget to get the clothes after that at least they’re already dry and I don’t need to wash them again.
Meditation really helps me. It’s hard to do especially when you know you should be doing other things; but, by focusing my mind for 30 minutes (I suggest starting with just 5 and work your way up.) I find it easier to not get distracted by other thoughts.
Best of luck to you. And, I’m sure you are an Amazing mom! No one’s home is perfect even if it looks it from the outside.
October 15, 2018 at 10:38 am #101490
Please please quit dwelling on the negative sides of ourselves!! We so relate to this post because it reinforces how we all feel as people with ADHD, mothers, and women in general. We are pulled from all sides and judged by others and ourselves constantly! Every mother I have ever spoken to feels inadequate. But don’t forget about our strengths!! Are you creative and fun with your children? Can you dream up new ways to do one boring thing and make it exciting and new? Our children will not suffer because dinner is pizza once or twice a week. In fact, why aren’t they helping you with the menu and the cooking if they are so fussy? Even a small child can rip lettuce into a bowl or bring things from the fridge/cupboard. sometimes if we show them the time and effort involved, they stop being so fussy. My rule at my house with my kids was that they had to take at least one bite of everything, every time it is served (because tastes change and sometimes it is prepared differently). If they don’t like it, they have 1 go-to choice, relatively nutritious, like peanut butter and jelly sandwich with raw veggies. Or hummus and whole wheat crackers. Or whatever. One choice, every time. And as soon as they are old enough to make it themselves, they need to make it, when they choose not to eat what you’ve prepared. Believe me, they will suddenly start thinking that what is served really isn’t all that bad. It is giving a choice, and teaching consequences of that choice. As long as you run your house like a restaurant, with you the cook, purchaser, clean-up, and menu planner, you will be frazzled.
You have great strengths that are not always appreciated–use them and love them. Ask for help when needed, such as: “Honey, I have to focus on this for 10 minutes. Can you set the kitchen timer and then come back to me?” Then make sure you put down whatever it is (whether you’re done or not) and focus on your child. It goes a long way to teaching your kids to appreciate themselves, other people’s limitations and their ability to work with these situations. It also helps you to manage time better and focus on one thing at a time. And manage priorities: childrens’ minds, hearts, and emotional needs MUST come first. But we are only 1 person. So kitchens may get dirty or laundry rewashed (I am NOTORIOUS for this!!), but the children feel love from you always. That is a GREAT mom. And I agree with the other comments–there are tricks and things to try (I am partial to kitchen timers all over the house–one by the basement door to remind me to change the laundry!), but there is no grade for good parenting. They will learn their own way in life if you teach them the basics. And your desire to improve for your kids shows you are a good mum.
And P.S., I also had the problem getting up in the mornings. It caused me jobs, missed performances at school, missed field trips, you name it. I am on ADHD stimulant medication and learned to set one alarm for 2-3 hours ahead of when I needed to get up. I keep the meds and water at my bedside, take the pill, and go back to sleep. By the time my second alarm goes off, I am able to function way better. And as you feel more successful, you won’t dread getting up and starting the day so much.
October 15, 2018 at 12:26 pm #101504
October 15, 2018 at 12:30 pm #101506
Hi – I totally understand the sense of wandering around the store lost and wondering where the time went. But the only real question I have reading your note is, where is your partner? Have you shared this with them? If you have a full time job then the housework (groceries, laundry, school admin) has to be shared. If your job requires attention to detail then there’s a really good chance there’s nothing left when it’s time to come home and get to the rest of it. Our ADHD brains can easily get bored and overwhelmed with the mundane, but coupled with a sense of unfairness that you’re even in the position of having to do it all, that can really be too much. All the systems in the world won’t solve the relationship issue – you have to do the work with your partner.
October 15, 2018 at 12:54 pm #101513
Hi I still going through this for me, it helps to a bihave a couple cups of caffeine in my system and then I pick the easiest task for me ,which is making the beds and tidying the bedrooms first once I have accomplish this that includes putting in a load to wash and do my living room, Kitchen and bathrooms after it really helps when I keep a system and as I see more progress it motivates me to get it all done and for worship songs keep me company but for some you favorite playist can make it a lil bit fun.
October 15, 2018 at 1:01 pm #101518
Here is what I do.
I buy main dish items when i am at the store. i make sure to count how many days, say if i am buying for the month, i pick enough meats or pastas or whatever to equal 30 days.
I do the same with sides, i actually buy twice the amt needed in sides because i know my moods change, and i dont plan so at least i have many options. I like having a mini grocery store inside my house.
the rest of things like condiments and spices, i keep stocked on hand.
extra things like taco seasoning packages or stew packages, chili whichever, i just make sure to always have those on hand too.
milk, eggs, sugar, things you know you need become something you either buy in huge bulk or make sure its on the shopping list.
when i get home, my entire food shelves are set up like the grocery store, because its frustrating as heck to have to dig thru disorder… its easier to just put it away the right way to begin with,
number one bit of advice, learn that everything doesnt have to be done in lightening speed. slow down. put it away when you touch it, you already have your hand on it, just put it where it belongs…
accept that you are going to screw up, time and time and time again.
you are not a bad mom. you are a mom who needs to learn how to do what works for her, and forget what everyone in society says is the right way to do things. i cant stand societal norms. i dont fit them, i never will. i dont do schedules unless i have no option, like hey my tuesday is a doctor appointment…. but as for 9 am, do this, 10 am do that, i cant handle it. it makes me feel like im being time squeezed and its very uncomfortable…
you will get this, the trick is never give up trying to find what works.
October 15, 2018 at 1:04 pm #101520
As many have said before me, you are not alone. I was 40 before I was diagnosed. I found out when my girls were diagnosed… Who knew that non-hyper girls could have it too!
Also, please remember to celebrate that you have found a job that works for you. Besides being detail oriented and having little social interaction, what skills have you developed for our job that work for you? Maybe you can take some of those skills you have mastered and apply them to your home life.
I’m not sure how much you know about ADHD but it is neurological and it sounds like you have a lot of Executive Function issues, meaning you have a hard time getting from A to B. It’s all part of ADHD. ADDitude is an amazing site to learn all you can. There are many books and other organizations as well. Speaking to your Dr. could be beneficial if you really believe you have ADHD. There are many ways to set up an ADHD brain for success that include, sleep, nutrition, medication, and external supports.
You have received tons of great advise above. Take what you think will work for you and modify it to suit you. May I also suggest that if you need help sorting it all out, an ADHD Coach can help. These coaches are trained life coaches with ADHD specific knowledge and can help you develop strategies to get things done that work for you and also hold you accountable. They can work alongside your Dr. and therapist. **Disclaimer, I’m a certified life coach and am currently going for my ADHD Coaching certification.
Good luck with your journey. You got this.
October 15, 2018 at 1:14 pm #101524
My son and I wee just recently diagnosed with adhd inattentive type and I am sure my 5 yr old daughter has it too…I spent the better part of my son’s first 8 yrs and most of my daughters life yelling or getting frustrated, being late, overwhelmed and when my son was 2 3/4 we took him to a counselor who told me I have control issues…that was a swing n miss for her…then we spen a year with a counselor (my husband and I doing marriage counseling) and my son doing counseling…they said he showed markers but not to worry…another swing n a miss…now that we know what’s going on I went through the regret and wish I had, I should have moments, to the hyper focused learn everything and make changes…I still get frustrated and raise my voice and recently my husband has started reading about it so we are getting better…I think the biggest thing that has helped it starting with me and what my strengths are and really what I can’t do…what I can’t do I just tell my husband “I can start the wash but I need you to fold it and put it away…or I can start the dishwasher but I need you to unload it…and with the kids I did a simple routine for morning, after school, and evening…we are still working on mastering the routine…and when all else fails I pray and thank god for all the blessings…and I also have taken this diagnosis as a super power and that’s what I teach the kids…but even super powers have limitations so we do what we can give ourselves grace for what we can’t…I try to be less perfectionist and more just completetionist (made up the word)…you are a great mom…and unique for your family just tap into what you can do and what you can’t do give to someone else…oh and when you don’t know what to do before you blow take a mommy time out…just say mommy is taking a time out go in your room n count until you are calm enough to access what is important and what’s not (this is hard for us with adhd so take a moment…it’s ok. YOU are an amazing mom, grace patience and joy sister!!!
October 15, 2018 at 1:23 pm #101532
Totally agree with mom 40 and diagnosed with girls…it’s truky a who knew and WOW moment…I went my whole life being told I need to live up to my potential or just finish something or stop being so scattered (ETC, ETC) but there are great things that come with knowledge and learning more about you, what are your strengths and struggles (executive functions, etc)…you got this sister, so thankful for our community…now I need to take care of stuff…check in with ya all later, blessings
October 15, 2018 at 1:36 pm #101540
This is me!!
I beat myself up too, wondering why I can’t do all of it…but I have reduced the amount I do that at least. I am a single mom of 2 kids and we all suffer with ADHD.
I now give myself some grace, simplify my life where ever I can and lower my unrealistic expectations-no matter how the other kids and moms look in public, I have learned that we all fall short…just in different ways.
I remind myself that God’s grace fills in the gaps of my parenting.
I pick one goal at a time to focus on improving. Right now it is to get my basic boring duties done-dishes and dinner :s before I have that 15 minute nap to get some energy to make it through the evening or continue on home renos (which is my passion).
Through trial and error, I have made small gains and they build on each other. I won’t ever be “typical” in my parenting but my goal is to get better and as long as I’m working toward that, I feel good about where I am right now…chaotic mess and all!
My advice? Be kind to you, pick one thing to research, explore and tackle with trial and error.
October 15, 2018 at 1:37 pm #101541
All I can say is I’m a single dad of 2 and am having the same problems. I work long hours too. I feel overwhelmed and like no matter what I try I can’t keep up. I don’t know what the solution is. I’ve tried prescribed amphetamines before but that created new problems. My therapist knows very little about ADHD. I’m meeting with my doctor and a psychiatrist this week to see if we can try different meds. The only other help I can think of is to try talking to others with ADHD.
October 15, 2018 at 2:42 pm #101556
Tomhurting, so glad you are talking to your Dr’s. That feeling of being overwhelmed and not knowing where to start is understandable and common with ADHDers. Bravo to you for reaching out to fellow ADHDers. ADDitude is a great resource. You may want to consider finding a Dr. and Therapist who specialize in ADHD. They will be able help you in a more specialized way. Good luck!
Everyone else, what amazing support for this mum. Our community rocks.
October 15, 2018 at 3:40 pm #101573
Thank you handreini
October 15, 2018 at 1:49 pm #101529
No you are not alone and you are not a bad mom, period! I have a few suggestions that aren’t dealing with Apps if you are up to receiving them. I am a married mother of 4 and extremely busy woman with ADHD (proud member of the tribe actually, and I am of the combined type). Your story isn’t as unique as you may feel it is and there are various realistic ways that your situation can be dealt with, with virtually zero to no financial cost to you at all, seriously. I’m not trying to sell you anything, kitty being real from my own personal experience.
Also, as October is ADHD awareness month, I’m certain you can pick up on some great tips for free from experts in the field that not only understand ADHD but many live with it daily themselves!
Last, before I go (and feel free to email me if you like at firstname.lastname@example.org), a mwmwber is our tribe and awesome professional wrote an inyetesting blog/article to deal with overwhelm-giving 3 useful tips
That you may find useful.
October 15, 2018 at 1:53 pm #101543
Sorry to ask here, but how do I start a new topic?
October 15, 2018 at 2:12 pm #101546
Wow, give yourself a break. I relate and also fall into the “not working with kids” category so don’t like to imagine what it would be like if I WAS working. If someone were to ask me what I do since I don’t work it would sound like, “I’m chasing my tail, starting but not finishing, losing things and not hitting the priorities for the needs of myself and my family”.
Before kids, I felt I was a successful person but after kids I felt dysfunctional and incompetent. I can manage my own idiosyncrasies but I can’t do a whole family of people like that.
My only hint about laundry because my kids hate going to school with clothes that smell spoiled by sitting in the washer is I do it one day of week so I can binge-watch TV one day of week and do all the loads in one straight shot. That dedicated day for laundry is between Friday – Sunday and can double as nice family-movie time. The kids never see me watch TV without a warm load of laundry in the midst.
I like binge buying meats and cooking and baking in a long session. I separate MEAT/cooked PLANT PROTEIN into portions and freeze. I make triple batch of a carb – RICE, PASTA, POLENTA, or POTATOES and keep in fridge. I have tons of re-usable containers that have lids and are microwavable. This is how this process works:
1) defrost meat/entree first thing in morning so you have that ready when you get home
2) Pull out a portion of your pre-cooked carb of the day (rice, pasta,…)
3) have seasonal vegetables in fridge and have stocked pantry staples: dried spices, garlic, onion, canned tomatoes, coconut milk, canned beans, canned chiles, etc…)
4) wing the meat with carbo and seasonal veg. as separate items or together with a simple sauce or seasoning.
What I love about the computer is typing in the ingredients with the word “recipe” will return recipes that have the ingredients I have. I’ve gotten some novel recipes doing that kind of search. Over time I feel I’m gaining confidence in “winging” creative combinations of foods without using recipes because that is more flexible but pulling out the 1 -4 sequence really helps me not get caught off guard with no components to make a meal at home.
I appreciate the advice and information people have shared as I benefit from this advice too.
- This reply was modified 5 days, 7 hours ago by keypher.
October 15, 2018 at 2:24 pm #101550
Thank you for sharing. You are not alone, and it is so relieving to know that other parents are struggling, too!
First I agree with some other replies about getting officially diagnosed. I was struggling (and still do) with all of this as a working mom (50+ hours a week) with two kids and couldn’t figure out what was going on until I got diagnosed in my 30s with ADHD. Going on Concerta has helped a lot. It’s not a cure-all but grocery stores do not overwhelm me like they used to.
I still forget the laundry for days at a time and never get enough done around the house but I am trying to remember to say “it’s okay.” For organization, I’ve actually found Pinterest seems to work like my ADHD brain. All the pins and boards are very random and scattered and it’s been a great tool for finding simple meal ideas and trying to use it to narrow down what I need at the grocery store so I don’t wander the aisles and do the pizza for dinner routine! I still end up with pizza one day a week and cheese, crackers and fruit for another meal but I’m up to cooking about 3 healthy meals a week which is much better than I used to do!
October 15, 2018 at 2:34 pm #101552
I didn’t have time to read everyones responses to this. It seems there are more ADHD moms than I ever thought. I have diagnosed anxiety and undiagnosed as he. My son has diagnosed adhd. His dad has undiagnosed adhd. I have 3 kids. My home is usually a terrible mess. Although my adhd boyfriend expects it to be immaculate lol. I have to laugh otherwise id be crazy. Or crazier I should say. All my clean laundry is always unfolded in baskets.
Ive often caught myself being the outsider, looking in on othee people’s lives who seemingly “have it together” but you have to ask yourself, do they really? Its very easy to judge from what other people present to the world. But behind closed doors their life could be just as crazy as ours. We’re usually our own worst critic.
Due to it being so hard to just get to a person who can give me an adhd diagnosis ive just had to deal. And you just do the best you can for your kids, which it sounds like you are! Keep your head up.
October 15, 2018 at 2:37 pm #101554
I am a guy (father and husband). No solutions, but some observations.
You have a good job, you get up and go to work (even when you do not want to), you have dinner with your family every day. It looks to me like you are a good mother.
I encourage you not to look at others to measure being “the perfect mom.” It turns out they have their struggles too.
I have found little tweeks help with chores. I use the heck out of my phone’s alarm clock. And I tag it with the chore (“Pick up … from school).
Really, it looks like you love your family and am available for them.
October 15, 2018 at 3:20 pm #101570
Thank you so much gleiby, your post has made me cry a little.
I do love my family so much but I have to admit I never thought I would find it so hard being a parent. I feel like I let them down at times when I’m clumsy, tired, forgetful and disorganised. But as you say I do get up and go to work each day to help provide for them. I also have an autoimmune condition which can cause me to be in pain at times (thankfully managed well with meds) & tired so there are times I really don’t feel like getting up and going to work for 8.30am.
I do think there’s an enormous amount of pressure these days in society, or certainly where I live to be the perfect mum and I get upset when I feel like I can’t cope with it all. And I can’t tell anyone so I bottle it all up inside and try and look like I’m coping.
October 15, 2018 at 3:11 pm #101565
Wow thank you so much to everyone who has replied and for all the great advice. I”m not sure where to start with replying!
I don’t think I know enough about the subject to know if I really do have ADHD or not. How would I know if it is or is it just that I’m rubbish at being organised? How is it diagnosed? I don’t think I was like this as a child and apart from always being late for family events, I don’t think my wider family have a clue about my struggles with organisation etc. I have never told anyone and my husband just loves me for who I am, thankfully! To be honest my husband is similar to me as well although better at coping with supermarkets!
I have an autoimmune condition which I take some quite heavy duty medication for and for this reason I would be reluctant to take any more meds. I could definitely do with improving my diet though and doing more exercise. Because of my poor planning I do not do well on either of these. When I feel down and overwhelmed with it all I reach for the biscuit tin rather than the fruit bowl! I am also a night owl and like to sit up late into the night browsing websites and attempting to read my self help books, although the next day I can never remember what I’ve read! I like the night time because everyone is in bed and I feel that it is my time to spend (waste) online and I don’t have to feel guilty that the kids are around. Of course I am usually shattered the next morning, struggle getting up for work and am usually late. I envy my work colleague who arrives half an hour early every day looking immaculate with her home made salad and fruit bowl stacked on her desk. Mind you she doesn’t have two children to think of a million things to do for every day. Every day I get at least one email from both schools with some request or other or a date to attend something. It’s like a part time admin job trying to keep,up with it all except I’m not getting paid for it.
My husband is lovely and he does a lot around the house. I work part time so feel that when I am home with the kids in the afternoons i should be getting on with things and keeping everything organised. People probably assume that I am organised as I do have time in the afternoons to do stuff but I just don’t do it! Often I get home from work, pick up kids and en just crash on the sofa with them. I feel tired and overwhelmed so I just sit there with them until I finally get around to putting some kind of meal together. This is where I think perhaps I am just lazy 😟 but I can’t seem to get motivated.
My husband although lovely has just got annoyed with me as he is looking for the sellotape and can’t find it, apparently I had it last. My daughter’s school book has gone missing which too which actually isn’t down to me but it might as well be.
I think one of the main problems is the amount of stuff we have in this house. We can’t find things easily. I am thinking of taking a day off work just to declutter while no one else is here. Do other people find clutter a problem? It makes my head hurt looking at it all.
I am going to go back through all the advice you’ve given me here and make notes in my notebook and see what I can try out. I jut have to remember to look at my notebook!
October 15, 2018 at 3:15 pm #101566
over the rainbowParticipant
I have been diagnosed and find every day tough for so many of the reasons you have listed. My psychiatrist told me to block out just thirty minutes a day to do something with my daughter, with all attention on her- no more, no less. Children want your time and focus and thirty minutes is all it takes. On the other stuff… I’m trying to plan one shop for the week, repetition is good because it means you don’t have to think… Baked potatoes, spaghetti Bolognese, fish pie, sausages mash and peas, vegetable soup with toast… Packed lunches, same thing every week… Clothes and washing is a familiar one, I’ve started doing it all on a Saturday for the whole week… I find it easier to do it once than multiple times… Same with cleaning (Friday)… Finances/bills get sorted on a Tuesday. Ive also basically binned my life- the less there is, the less there is to organise. Have done the same thing with my daughter. Making sure there are set locations for things in the house (key hooks and dog lead hook in the kitchen… It’s a random place but it works because it’s where I would dump stuff when I get in)… There are so many great resources and tips on this site but the best advice I’ve been given is don’t try to be too much or punish yourself for what you don’t do. When everything is a struggle every day, celebrate the small successes. Do things once wherever you can (filling the car with gas rather than multiple trips, making a bulk pasta salad for a week’s lunches). Set yourself a routine and stick to it…. Don’t snooze the alarm. Exercise every day vigorously for an hour, get enough sleep and just take care of your emotional well-being…. Make healthy eating as easy as possible (it does make a difference to focus)… I nutribullet every morning with omegas, berries and avocado… roast vegetables with balsamic and stock and blend them into a pasta sauce… We have also started trying to connect through board games… No televisions, ipads, multiple conversations at once… It makes it easier to stay present. I’m saying all of this stuff and I try to stick to it, but sometimes it all goes wrong… Sometimes I just want to zone out let the kids watch TV, miss bath and storytime, don’t get prepped the night before and just fail massively. On those days I try to go to bed, wake up energised, take five minutes to brain dump everything before I start again and hopefully have a better tomorrow. I would also say if you haven’t been diagnosed, go get diagnosed. I finally took the plunge 18 months ago and it changed my life… Once you know what the problem is you can start getting informed, put strategies that actually help in place and finally stop feeling like a failure. At work I get in, take my meds and write my to do list. I plug into music so I don’t get distracted by conversations around me. I get up regularly and I have a job that works in a project based way… Means every day is different, I rarely get bored and thrive under deadline pressure. Good luck!
October 15, 2018 at 3:20 pm #101569
As someone who definitely has ADHD I’d guess you have it also. I suggest you check a list of symptoms and see how many you can relate to. Clutter and disorganization is one sign.
October 15, 2018 at 3:38 pm #101572
Yikes! Exercise…Sleep, nutrition and exercise are the 3 things besides medication that can help. I know I was missing the word. Dang working memory… Glad others posted about it.
October 15, 2018 at 4:19 pm #101580
Schedules,planners notebook to write everything down for children school. Have a notebook for your child with his weekly responsibilities at school an at home. I AM add so is my son schedules work great post them around the house.For yourself Only have 1 alarm make u have an alarm clock not your phone so you have to get Puget out the bed no excuses just get up your not lazy you just have to build on good habits. Not a morning person Go to bed earlier no tv in your room. Room is for sleeping only. Struggle is real for us add folks but we can manage with schedules routines,planners be patient with yourself. An always stop an breathe with things get overwhelming. You can do it I promise
October 15, 2018 at 4:23 pm #101582
I am in the same boat besides the working part.
I cannot handle working, it takes so much out of me to work that I am even more useless at home.
I’m a single mom. I have no idea how to do any of the things I need to do. My doctors will not listen to me so I have not been diagnosed, and if I do find a doctor who listens I can’t remember to go to or make appointments.
I was so distraught trying to make the public school happy jumping through hoops and keeping appointments for 3 different kids in 3 different schools that I actually took them out and havethem in online homeschool. Not to meet school deadlines every day and letting go of the horrible struggles to get up on time get kids to school and get them home was such a huge load off my back.
We have much less laundry, much less daily organization, much less gas in the car, much less stress every day. There were many other reasons I chose homeschool (all 3 kids were failing traditional school anyway because we could not get help for THEIR issues) but a huge one was that I was going insane trying to keep up.
I know all the things I should do to help myself, but my biggest issue is executive functioning, so I cannot DO the things I need to do to help myself.
I feel most guilty about the parenting issues because they affect my children.
The only reason I have not run off to a remote island is because I tell myself this parenting thing is temporary. They will grow up and I will not be doing this the rest of my life.
If I had to be a mom in the sense of caring for children daily the rest of my life I am not sure I could survive. In fact I know I would not. This is the absolute worst.
I love my kids. I absolutely hate parenting with ADHD and I can’t wait for it to be over
October 15, 2018 at 4:34 pm #101586
You’ve received a LOT of great replies and advice on this forum. As a coach for those with ADHD (for over 20 years), I know it can be overwhelming to prioritize all the advice, especially on your own. That is part of the frustrating challenge of ADHD.
I would suggest:
1. Starting with getting a diagnosis (since things like sleep disorders can mimic ADD)
2. Then decide w/practitioner how to treat the biology of your ADD (meds/alternative/?) Are there co-occurring conditions?
3. Consider getting help creating customized strategies and ongoing support for your challenges to implement them from a professional ADD Coach, who can also support your STRENGTHS! This can be by phone.
You can do this!!
October 15, 2018 at 6:18 pm #101613
You probably need to rest your body and may need som organic hemp oil.If you don’t eat properly,sleep well and have adhd it’s wayyy harder for you to get up and do what you need to do ,also I suggest you go for a check up and get your blood taken out,maybe you also have aniema. And that would explain why you feel so extra drain and can take some iron pills.I have anemia and something call fibromyalgia and lords I feel tired and in pain most of the time .I refuse to go back on meds so started hemp oil.Good luck
October 15, 2018 at 8:42 pm #101620
RE hemp oil-
I second that.
My son was on 4 different meds for 5 years and is now only taking full spectrum hemp oil.
When I took it I was doing much better too, but unfortunately I cannot afford it for both of us. His issues are so severe that it ruins everyone in the house’s day if he does not have medication, so this is fantastic. The hemp oil is also the only thing that actually is improving his cognition. He has been frustrated his whole life and never asked questions about anything because whatever was confusing caused a melt-down in the past.
Now I can hardly answer all his questions he is so curious and actually jokes and laughs with us.
It’s kind of ironic, I signed on as a distributor for the company we use so I could get the discount to order the oil, so I also have the option to sell the oil to others but so far I haven’t jumped in. Maybe I should so I can afford it for myself as well.
October 15, 2018 at 10:10 pm #101628
Ahhh the ADHD mom life. I work a full time job(manager) am a mom, wife, dog mom, volunteer in various organizations. I don’t think people realize how hard it is to wear multiple hats like women do these days and struggle with a condition that keeps you unfocused, unorganized, physically drained by noon but lay in bed for hours because your brain won’t SHUT UP. It is a daily struggle to do enough in order to feel “good enough”. I am obsessed with planners and focus apps that last a few weeks to a month then get forgotten. I write EVERYTHING down. In the morning I make a list of things I want to accomplish that day and map it out down to every 15 or 30 minutes. And with that I might get half of it done but at least I tried. I even set timers on my phone to get me back on track just in case I have had a “squirrel” moment. I notice it’s worse in the winter months since there is less sunshine which is very beneficial to the human body. So I have all those issues and I’m putting myself through online college and working on starting my own business. Life is tough. Last year I got my hormones checked just in case but nope. Ugh so now I’m on medication which helps tremendously…when it finally kicks in….and I can’t take it past a certain time since I can’t sleep as it is. It definitely helps but what I’m trying to say is nobody is perfect. Even with drugs lol. Just keep trying new methods see what works for you and what doesn’t. The perk to ADHD is there’s no one size fits all (Wait that’s not really helpful). Just keep trying and don’t be so hard on yourself. I’ve figured out that sometimes I am way overthinking a situation and if I just calm down ommmmmmm and breathe I can approach it with a tiny bit more clarity. It is always good to know you aren’t the only one with a foggy spinning head. Good luck.
October 15, 2018 at 11:13 pm #101632
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. 🙂 Some things can be delegated, like having pantry items delivered to your house monthly from amazon, or making an online shopping list and picking it up curbside from the grocery store so you don’t have to go in and get overwhelmed. Also, taking a long weekend and having a friend or professional organizer come over to help you tackle the organization stuff. Life coaches and ADD coaches can be super helpful too!
Just know you don’t have to do it alone. It’s okay to be overwhelmed. Life is definitely overwhelming nowadays with all of the constant demands. It’s hard to sift through and simplify to the important things. An “outsider” can offer a different perspective, remind you of what you’re doing well, and show you ways to tackle the things you’re struggling with. Best of luck to you Honey!
October 16, 2018 at 1:37 am #101635
I have to have coffee EVERYDAY to help me wake up!
Having ADD is hard! Shopping is really hard for me as well. I have to have a list or else I will either get side tracked or will leave with nothing because I can’t make a decision.
Meal planning is the hardest thing to do but I have tried simplifying it. Make it Easy:
Monday Chicken (pick 5 ways to make chicken)
Tuesday Hamburger (sloppy joes, tacos,etc)
Wednesday Fish (salmon, baked cod, fish sticks, shrimp,etc)
Once you plan your 5 easy meals by day or type of food keep the lists on your phone. If you are a visual person slap them in a folder. Keep it in your car. It makes grocery shopping easier.
School stuff all goes in a container or bin that is a little bigger than 8-1/2 x 11. If it is not an actionable item like a permission slip it all goes in this bin. At the end of each school break I go through and keep creative things and significant accomplishments. At the end of the school year all the stuff to keep goes into a storage container labeled for that grade.
Don’t despair…. Just try to attempt 1 new thing that might help you get through the daily grind.
Good luck. Each day is a new day!
October 16, 2018 at 3:17 am #101640
I feel for you. I’m the same way. Two things….order the workbook Declutter Mess to Organize Success by Cassandra Aarsen. The writer has ADHD and I just started it and loving it. Another thing…I started taking Kratom in powder and capsules. I get it from Calibotanticals.com and live in Cali so I go to the place. I have energy and focused. I take the Private Reserve Maeng Da and white. I’m going to try the enhanced next. My son says his mom is back! I can’t take ADHD meds as 10mg of Ritilin would put me in anxiety and I’d fall asleep. There are other supplements on Amazon I’m going to try for focus. One of the comments were a person who had to get off adderal for health reasons and started this and is doing well. The name is escaping me at the moment. Slow down, set timers and make lists. Hugs.
October 16, 2018 at 10:44 am #101687
Your life sounds a lot like mine. Sandra Felton wrote a book called “The Messies Manual”. It has helped me because she helped me put my disorganized life into perspective and helped me change my mindset. It was nice to find that she had a lot of the same issues as me. Also, she is funny. One thing I started doing after reading her book was to write a master list of my meals that I cook frequently. I plan out my meals for two weeks at a time and just rotate and recycle the meals that I have on my plan. Another way to do it is to plan what kind of meal to eat on a particular day, for example, Monday – pasta, Tuesday- chicken, Wednesday- beef, Thursday- sandwiches, salad, etc. Using the meal plan has also allowed me to spend less on groceries because I only buy what I plan for and we eat leftovers before I cook again.
October 16, 2018 at 12:01 pm #101695
First of all, you are not alone with this! So many moms are drowning in perceived expectations, even non-ADHD moms. There is so much, as John Mayer put it yesterday “Other Stuff” we are bombarded with all day. Are you a single mom? Because that will mean you’re doing twice the work. I had to just be honest and forth rite with my husband and daughter. I’ve been unemployed since 2012 and sort of ended up a SAHM, no I’m fine with getting the shitty stuff done around the house and going to the store, so when my husband is off we can just enjoy our together time, but I did say plainly that I need help, and I can’t do all this alone, because I forget, or just get sick of doing it everyday. Plus, I want to set a good example for our daughter, I don’t want her growing up thinking that it’s the woman’s job to do all this shitty house work. My mom did ALL the house work and worked full time, that was not right or fair. Infact a lot of my parents dynamic made me want to NOT ever get married. My struggles are, that my husband has OCD and I think inattentive type ADHD, so he’s in his own work and not seeing the stuff that needs to be done or fixed, or he’s just not to concerned with keeping the yard trimmed because he doesn’t care what the neighbor’s think. Where I’m always hyper aware of everything and see everything that’s breaking on the house or the over flowing piles of stuff, and get over whelmed when I look at it to tackle. I struggle with all the stuff the school sends home, I have hoarding tendencies. I’m always fighting to keep life simple, but when you’re at this stage of life with young kids in school, it’s very complicated, stressful, and messy! So what you gotta do is ditch the guilt and be kind to yourself. Do you love your family? Then focus on that positive. I worry about my families nutrition too, and I get bored with what I make. But I routinely make the same thing over and over, and it’s really simple, and you can make these too:
Steak on the grill, thin cut steak takes like 10 minutes on a gas grill if you got one!
Chicken wings in the oven:
Oven 425, put chicken wings in a large baking pan, sprinkle with seasoned salt, cook until crispy and brown! My daughter loves these. All kids love the crispy chicken skin, let them eat it!
Breaded Chicken Tenders: get some chicken tender loins, mix up some flour with seasoned salt, garlic powder, paprika, chile powder, and pepper, beat 2 eggs in another dish, and put plain flour in another, dip chicken in flour, then egg, then the seasoned flour, cook in a skillet with some healthy low smoke oil like sunflower oil, brown on both sides, then put in a 400 oven for 5-10 more minutes.
Chile so Easy, but will be very salty:
Canned: crushed tomato, chile seasoned diced tomatoes, tomato paste, 3 cans of beans, I usually do 4 canolini, black, black eyed peas, dark red kidney, brown the ground beef first, then add all the stuff and let simmer. Canned food is really salty tho :/ I’m working on a vegetarian version with quinoa instead of meat.
Instead of a main course with sides, just eat sides, they’re the best anyway.
Who says you can’t have cereal for dinner? lol
I make a lot of simple stuff, I try to grill a lot because it’s so damn easy. I don’t get too into seasoning or complicated recipes. And I only make 1 side which is usually the green beans. I don’t worry about having a carb like rice or bread, intact we don’t eat bread or pasta. People get way more carbs than they need all day.
Find out what fruits and veggies your kids like, especially raw and just get tons of those. On day when I’ve made my daughter something I feel is unhealthy for dinner, I always pair it with a healthy veg or fruit.
We don’t drink soda or juice, only water. At school it’s different, and it’s not like we never ever drink soda, we just don’t keep it in the house. Also, my husband and I don’t drink alcohol, I have a hard enough time thinking straight and being on point.
I’m really into fitness and nutrition, or wellness which is psychological as well. I run 3-4 times a week and this has helped me so much! Running isn’t for everyone so try to find something where you are really exerting yourself for 20-30 minutes to exercise the demons that come with having ADHD. They can’t keep up with that! HIIT workouts are great! Try to avoid processed foods and eat lots of fresh fruits and veggies, drink lots of water, limit caffeine, I’m trying to eliminate caffeine/coffee but I’m not there yet! And try to get as much rest as you can. I think ADHD people are always some what sleep deprived so take naps if you can or try to wind down early enough so you can get your Zzzzzs.
Deligate tasks to your kids if it’s age appropriate. Teach them to do their own laundry and hold them accountable for cleaning up their messes. It’s important for kids to see the house as team effort, we all live here so we’re all responsible for taking care of it and keeping it clean. My daughter has suddenly become more helpful and I thank her for it and give her a hug. Kids love getting love. So always replace your inequalities with love, Love covers a multitude of sins after all. I’m not always the happy, gentle, patient, loving mom, my ADHD puts me on edge and I often get over whelmed by the noise and pressure of trying to be a perfect mom and parent to my daughter, but with no examples of my own to draw from. I was abused as a child and rejected by my dad. None of that shit bothered me until my daughter was born. Suddenly I had issues, and I often struggle to relax and just connect and enjoy my time with her. So get help if you needed. Whether it’s a counselor, a baby sitter (my husband refuses to hire a baby sitter, so this is an issue) or some one to come help with the house work or organization. If you are like me and can’t afford, just give yourself credit and remember that you are doing the best you can with what you’ve been given. If you fell a little short today, just learn from it and try harder tomorrow. Kids mostly need to be loved, respected, given a safe stress free home to be themselves in. Kids need to be loved and accepted by their parents. Good nutrition is kind of a plus. But love and acceptance is what we all need most. So focus on that. I can’t run multiple things at once, I need to keep it simple, so I focus on being as loving as I can, and often times that takes so much effort on my part that it’s all I can do.
Veggies: I buy the steam bags of broccoli, beans, and corn
My daughter loves green beans, beans, tomatoes, cucumbers blue berries, plums, peaches, strawberries so I always have lots on hand so she eats those hopefully more than the other crap she likes.
Spaghetti is so easy, add ground beef to the sauce and bam you’re done!
Get the kids involved in the kitchen, ask them what they like to eat, have a pretend cooking show with their toys and let them be in on the cooking process. Don’t limit yourself to traditional dinner fare, eat what ever you want at dinner. Keep it simple and fun. Life is short, none of this shit matters when we die, only that we loved and allowed ourselves to be loved.
October 16, 2018 at 1:21 pm #101698
You have definitely summed up my life too! Although I have a diagnosis, and medication; the benefits just seem to wear off so quickly and it’s incredibly frustrating. My psychiatrist makes me feel as though I’m just seeking more drugs even though he truly tries to not come across that way; I feel like he’s thinking it.
Anyway, my biggest struggle is when I try to actually take the time to read these online forums and articles to try and help, when I should be doing something else! My 12yr old son has ADHD/ASD diagnosis (low on the spectrum of ASD, it’s hardly noticeable, but still there) We have wipe off boards a bulletins all over our house and (although I’m getting better) I often forget to even look at them. Recently I started writing que words on index cards and regular things we(he) forgets on bright colored paper and taping them on the walls in multiple places they’re likely to be in view when we need to remember them. I too am great at putting things on my calendar, but have sometimes forgotten after the reminder has reminded me between the time of event or task to do. One suggestion I was given for this was to change the notification sounds and alarm sounds on my phone maybe every week or every other day if you need to, so we’re less likely to shrug off the sound, and also move the signs around once a week or so, so you don’t get used to seeing them and they’re less easy to ignore.
My last suggestions is this book I just started reading called “The Adult ADHD Toolkit” by J. Russell Ramsay (PhD) & Anthony L. Rostain (MD) I’m only a chapter or two in (because I can’t always justify the time to read it & suck at designating time for it) but just the first little bit I’ve read has sounded so promising. I’ve also been told about how helpful cognitive behavioral therapy can be, & then I found some lectures on youtube by Dr. Russell Barkley that have been helpful in explaining ADD/ADHD & he has some books about ADHD I’m waiting for the library to get. I just found his lectures to be reassuring in that it’s not laziness, or “bad parenting” it’s something that we can’t help and there are supports and treatments out there to help.
I hope this helps! You’re most certainly not a bad parent or alone in this!
October 16, 2018 at 5:36 pm #101763
Hi I am a diagnosed ADD adult and also a professional organizer and coach. You might ask how that is possible? I suffered so much as a young adult with juggling all of life’s demands. I was a busy single working mom who could not get my home life together. That was twenty years ago. I studied and learned techniques that changed my life. Because the change was so dramatic. I became obsessed with learning more and more techniques and tips. Now I am an empty nester that started a professional organizing business to help women who were suffering just like me!
October 17, 2018 at 8:04 am #101697
First, remember you are doing the best you can with what you have. Getting control of ADHD can be really challenging. It takes time and patience to figure out your systems and routines that work best for you. You are a good mom because you are worried about your behaviors and how they could affect her so that is important to remember. You are a good mom. To note, I have been diagnosed and I worked with a coach and read a lot on ADHD. I have found systems that work for me so I will share some with you. To note, some of this may be repetitive, I didn’t have time to read everyone else’s’ post.
1. Food: some good websites and tips
Minimalist baker: https://minimalistbaker.com/ I like her recipes and find them fairly easy healthy too. most recipes are one bowl, minimal ingredient and usually done in 30 minutes or less.
Cookie & Kate: https://cookieandkate.com/
When it comes to food, I look for recipes that work well for freezing. I.E. I make a batch of muffins that can be frozen, that way for breakfast I can just thaw one or two out as needed in the microwave or toaster and top with things like Almond Butter for a quick and healthier breakfast. Same thing with dinner. This means I am cooking once but getting multiple days out of the food. I label every container that goes in the freezer with the date and what the item is, so it makes it easy to find what I am looking for. Once a week I take inventory of what I have so I can plan my meals out and know what I need to cook and what I have. Allowing one night ever week or every two weeks for leftovers really helps to clean out excess food.
Don’t beat yourself up over the pizza. If you do frozen pizza, just add a bunch of veggies and some hearty good cheese on top before baking in the over to give it more substance. Or add a salad on the side. Over time you will learn hacks and routines that will make it easier to get healthier meals. Years before I had kids I was the worst about eating healthy, over time I found ways to improve my eating habits and now I am often complimented by how healthy I have become.
• Routine is key for this. For example if you know you need to clean your bathroom plan it out, perhaps it is every Thursday, or every 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month. Be consistent.
• Get a calendar you can find them at the dollar store, and different colored pens.
• On Sunday or whatever day, you can carve out 15 minutes plan out and review your schedule.
• While it might not look pretty put it in a visible spot. your fridge etc. Wherever you will see it daily.
• Assign each item a color, cleaning=blue, bills=red, meals=green etc. So that way when you eyeball the calendar you know exactly what you’re looking at. Map out what you need to be doing each day. This will help you to focus.
• Use timers: I did this for a long time until I could on my own remember things. For example, if I was doing laundry I would set the timer on the washing machine or my stovetop so that when it buzzed I could think of a buzzer is going off what was that for, oh yes laundry I need to switch it over. DON’T WAIT, get up and change the laundry over right away. This is the demise is sometimes we procrastinate and say oh I will get it in a minute. Don’t allow yourself to turn off that buzzer until you flipped the laundry.
• Breakup the tasks: I do this in two ways.
o One is sometimes I find it easier to alternate between two projects to keep me motivated. I can be cleaning my dining room and doing dishes. For example, I will unload the dishwasher and I put a timer on to keep me focused and motivated to beat the clock it is a game. Once I get through unloading I go into the dining room and clean the table and sweep the floor. Then I go back and load the dishwasher. It just lets me refresh and not get so bored with things.
o When you can, bring things halfway. For example, when I am cleaning and find items I need to bring upstairs I will bring it to my banister and leave the item there. Then the next time I go upstairs I take it with me. This way I keep on the original task at hand and don’t get distracted.
• Stimulate yourself: For all of my cleaning, I listen to audiobooks, it makes me feel like I am accomplishing something I want. Cleaning has to get done but it is BORING to me. So, I listen to audiobooks (to note I get them for free from my local library and use the app Overdrive). You could also listen to Podcast etc. The idea is that we basically have two brains going so if you can burn off the excess energy by focusing on thing, and then the other energy by focusing on another task you can complete your task more easily.
I am not sure if this information is helpful, but I hope it is a start. Remember being patient with yourself is important. It is hard to be a parent, working full-time and take care of everything we have to do. I find having systems in place and keeping up with routines has helped me keep my life organized.
When you get overwhelmed remember to think of something you are grateful for. Janice Kaplan author of Gratitude Diaries discovered in her research that focusing on what you are grateful for is more valuable for calming ourselves than any other technique including breathing exercises.
I apologize for typos and grammar errors I have to limit my time for this post. Best of luck and share with us what techniques you use that do work.
Best of luck!
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