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I Am Joe's Keys

Life is never dull when you belong to an organizationally challenged adult with ADHD! Here, organization tips from Joe's keys.

2 Comments: I Am Joe's Keys

  1. Too many steps and tips. GOT OVERWHELMED when it said to make sure to have pens and folders etc. I don’t remember the rest of the tips/steps because there were just too many bullets.

  2. I may be lower functioning than the intended audience of this article. And certainly people are different so it’s good to have a toolbox of strategies (+1 for the “happy dance”). However, for me, global advice on “How to Stop Losing Things and Get Organized and Throw Away Extra Magazines” would never have helped me conquer my lifelong “lost keys syndrome.”

    I got my inspiration from a piece several years ago in Ryan McRae’s ADHD Nerd blog on New Year’s Resolutions. He said that to successfully change a habit you have to analyze the entire pattern of the specific thing you want to change and put robust systems in place to make it “easier to succeed than to fail.” For me this meant focusing just on what I wanted to do with my keys, both coming in and going out, setting up the environment at home and in my purse. It also meant checking up on myself daily or more often to see if my keys were where they were supposed to be AND instituting a goofy little reward (the happy dance) or penalty (10 squats…note not beating myself up!) to reinforce the new pattern.

    Although this might seem like a ridiculous amount of effort to put into changing 1 single bad habit, the reality is that it worked (within a month I was nearly 100% compliant, and I have only “lost” my keys–for a few minutes–about 5 times in the last 4 years. And it was rather fun. The fun penalty took the self-loathing out of the equation, and kept me on a positive course. I have since done a similar routine with keeping my phone and iPad charged. (My aerobics routine required a different approach, but that’s a different story.)

    I may not live long enough to change all my bad habits, but the self-respect from making real change happen, however small, has been a great blessing.

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