Procrastination

How to Stay Focused with Inattentive Adult ADHD

As an adult with inattentive ADD, I jump-start my day and find focus with these trusty tricks.

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Woman with ADHD laying on floor, using computer, and battling inattentiveness by listening to music with headphones

My two-year-old son just left for day care with his daddy. I’m here with the baby, who is sleeping peacefully. It’s too quiet for me to start my day. Inattentive types like it quiet, right? For those who know a little about attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), inattentive means acting spacey or being introverted. If my hyperactive counterparts have trouble choosing what to do and staying with the task, I have trouble choosing what to think about, and following my thoughts into doing something.

I can’t get going in the morning unless there is some kind of fire to put out, usually one started by my toddler. He may be chewing on a Matchbox car or emptying a bin of toys on the floor. When he isn’t here, I am in a vacuum. But I have developed some rituals to help me tackle my to-do list.

Setting a timer gets me going on paperwork; putting on high-energy music or sending an e-mail to a buddy telling him what I have to do holds distraction at bay. When I have to write a blog, I wrap my hands around a mug of tea and let my mind wander to a topic. Sometimes I need activity around me to keep my mind on what I’m doing. Solution? I head to a busy coffee shop.

There are countless strategies for hyperactive people with ADHD; fewer, it seems, for those with inattentive type. By knowing yourself and finding tricks that will spring you into action, you can get out there and get going.

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