Routine and Tips for my ADHD, Anxiety, and OCD.

Routine (and more) play a significant role in my ADHD, anxiety, and OCD “management.”

Now, if I go a week or so without it, I’m okay (to an extent)- but recently after 6 weeks of travel and chaotic scheduling- my routine was disrupted- and it’s taken a while for my intricate mind to get back into it. 

 

59888987.jpg(not my image)

After getting myself back into routine (for the most part), I wanted to share what’s helped me (all in one place- instead of scattered in my planner, on the internet, or at the doctor’s office).

General:

  • Learning to say no…. I will forever struggle with this. But you definitely cannot say yes to everything.
  • I play games that exercise my mind.
  • I make sure I do things I really enjoy and allow myself to get lost in it (since I need to make sure I don’t do this when I’m trying to get things done.)
  • I tackle my to do list and celebrate my accomplishments!
  • I do my best/put my all in the first time.

Organization and Planning:

  • I’ve been getting into the bullet journal/planners and I gotta say- it’s a fad I’m into. 
  • Designating certain items for key places- my keys always go on the hook along with my headphones (because the kittens keep chewing) and I have a place for a lot of my important documents. 
  • I put in exactly enough insulin (roughly) to last me 3 days for pump site changes- otherwise it won’t dawn on me to change it…
  • I use filing systems and color coordination for everything because it helps, and I love color!

Break it down:

  • PRAISE LISTS! To do lists are my friend. I try to do it on a whiteboard to stay green! But sometimes lists happen on post-its or scrap paper. Maybe even on my hand or via email!
  • If I hear it, I have to write it down- in my planner, on my hand, to an email to myself. Otherwise it will probably get lost/forgotten. I also repeat back what I wrote. 
  • If there’s a big task that gets overwhelming, I break it down into manageable steps or categories.  (This is also when I see my anxiety and ADHD come together in full fore).
    • So it means putting like-minded things together typically
      • Maybe that category is difficulty or time sensitive or even just the type of tasks.
    • Then I put those items in order from either difficulty or time sensitive items.
      • This includes each category and the items within it each category.
    • I do each category- then take a break- and set a timer!

Time:

  • Timers and alarms are my best friend!
    • I have them for getting ready for bed too!
  • I’ve gotten really good at estimating how long things take- BUT- I will always give myself more time than I think I need.
  • I need deadlines and topics/focus areas.
  • I try hard not to go from task to task, but instead finish one item on my list or a key aspect of that item.
  • I set aside time to get organized- each day and for the week. 
  • I plan ahead and start ASAP. 
  • My calendar alerts are scheduled appropriately- at work 5 – 10 minutes before so I don’t forget if the alarm is earlier or at the same time. But for other things like appointments or places I need to go to- it’s when I either need to leave or get ready. 

Environment:

  • I adjust my position and outside influences based off of the tasks.
  • I get distracted. Easily. I hear convos and want to hear it/be a part of it. I might get an idea for something.
    • So first- I have a MASSIVE list of all of my random ideas I’ve thought out that I revisit every now and then. If I get an idea and don’t write it down, I obsess over it.
    • I alternate how I sit at my desk (the floor is when I’m in the zone!). I alternate where I sit. Sometimes I have music playing or I need silence.
    • Sometimes, I need to get to a more secluded area.
  • I HAVE to be in an environment that is conducive to productivity- specifically when I’m not at home or work. 
    • I need to have a seat and a proper working space- a table or a desk ideally. 
      • I have a folding one for my apartment.
    • It needs to be either secluded if events are going on. Or I need to be around other people working.
  • I talk about it (my mental health) with no shame or stigma.
  • I’m upfront with what I need to function- but also to make sure people are aware of it so that our expectations are clear. It’s not just for me- it’s for them too.
  • For my lunch break, no matter the weather- I walk around the office outside.
  • Knowing my triggers- what stresses me out? Makes me anxious? Makes me scattered? Can these things be avoided? If not, how do I handle it?

Health:

  • I take medications for my anxiety/OCD and ADHD
  • Learn about my diagnoses.
  • I recognize the role my diagnoses play into my mental health.
    • The role my diabetes plays when my blood sugars are below or above target to increase my anxiety or scattered-ness.
    • If continuous birth control doesn’t work, and I have my period- my anxiety goes off like a rockets hip.
  • I let myself feel.
  • I take timeouts-
    • At work, with people, at home.
    • If I feel overwhelmed for whatever reason, I remove myself from the situation- even if it’s only for 2 minutes. I take deep breaths. This sometimes includes reaching out to people or letting myself let it out if it’s extreme.
  • Remind myself that everything isn’t in my control.
  • I try to make things positive when I can. Especially in high stress situations (and because I’m a people pleaser).
  • POLI for my diabetes management.
  • Every now and then I try to take a caffeine and ADHD med break (not my anxiety meds).
    • These days are rough…… for everyone…. 

“LUCKILY”, the things that help with anxiety and/or ADHD, help with the other!

For me, a lot of this falls under routine and habits and being proactive. I’m better at some things than others. And I struggle if my routine is off for whatever reason. It takes me a bit to get back into it all.

I would love to hear if you have any tips or tricks that help you thrive in everyday life!?

 

Hey you! Yes, you! 

Let’s connect on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram (maybe even 2 or all of those!). 

If you enjoyed this post, please comment and share. I’d also appreciate your feedback.

and of course-don’t forget to keep up with “There’s More to the Story” via email! (Right sidebar towards the top).

We’ll both be glad you did! -Mindy

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