"I Make a Lot Of Mistakes — But You'll Get Used to It."
Forgetful? Missed a deadline? Stop making excuses and start making plans. Learn how to cut negative words out of your vocabulary, stop making repeat mistakes, and use a planner to meet deadlines.
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5 Comments: "I Make a Lot Of Mistakes — But You'll Get Used to It."
I loved the article and the comments, especially salty6.
You hit the nail on the head.
I’m sure we could all use more than just the suggestions at the bottom to help with forgetfulness/time management, BUT the main point was about how we speak to and about ourselves in light of these struggles, which is most often negative and self-defeating.
I appreciated the reminder to be aware of how I am thinking about my problems – if I’m constantly discouraged and feeling shame and thinking I’ll never change, then I won’t. The key is to separate out the feelings from the truth (I was late vs. I can never be on time) and speak more constructively/hopefully (along with seeking solutions, of course).
My husband of 20 years remains in denial of his undiagnosed ADHD. The thing this article got most right is that the excuses serve only to make him come across as unreliable and uncaring. Now, I know he is not there things – but I simply do not want to hear his excuses any more. One thing this article got less right is to stop apologizing. If I’ve been inconvenienced, again, I want an acknowledgement of responsibility, not explanations, and certainly not groveling. I know why and how it happened, I don’t want the same story I’ve heard again and again. Respect me enough to acknowledge the inconvenience, then let’s move on.
This one really hit me. I apologize constantly and feel like I need to give details. I hate being late and forgetful. But i also think it is true to some degree that I’m not going to be able to change. I’ve tried my whole life, but regardless of all the planners and timers in the world, my brain is the way that it is, and I’m GOING to be late and forget things.
This is good advice to know, but I think the struggle is in being able to use a planner effectively. Many ADHD’ers just forget to look at it. Two things that I’ve done to flip the script:
– Have plenty of reminders and queues. Don’t depend on just one. With ADHD, it’s easy to miss the one thing, even though most neurotypicals say only to rely on one source. For example, if I need to get an important thing done, I will set an alarm on my phone, write it down in my planner, use my Slackbot to remind me 15 minutes before the thing is due (or when I need to leave) and leave items I need to take in a bag hanging on the door, so that I can’t miss it, or another designated launch pad.
– The other thing I do is minimize attention to myself and if anyone prompts me (“Have you heard back from the vendor yet?”) you can say, “Oh, thank you for reminding me, I’ve been waiting to hear back and will get back to you.” A positive, nondefensive attitude goes a long way in conveying your own confidence, and they don’t need to know whether you forgot or if someone else did. In line with that, my goal is to make sure nobody has to ask me twice for something. I will provide updates on something, especially if the process requires more steps that I thought or I’m waiting on other things. As long as you are giving updates, people are more forgiving of delays.