Four Tips to Reduce Clutter and Stress with ADHD
If you or a loved one has ADHD, you know all too well that managing things and stuff can be overwhelming. Unless those things involve your personal interests, your mind may focus on other things that interest you.
Get Peace of Mind
You may wander around, not noticing what’s around you, or you might tune into some preferred things and be distracted by others. Here are four ways you can minimize clutter and feel less stress so you can have peace of mind to take care of your self and your family.
Adjust your Viewpoint - Literally
Although many people with ADHD are visual, how your brain visually interprets information is critical to how you manage your stuff. Visual processing is not just realizing the object is physically there but also how you become aware of it. You may see it as an outline, or in detail, slowly or all at once.
• Scan the floor of the room systematically.
• Take pictures of your space and observe your space through the photo.
If your brain has challenges processing a lot of details, this can be limiting for how you organize your stuff. You'll need strategies for finding items or noticing the papers strewn across the counter.
• Use large reminder notes, or Post-It notes, in large block letters.
• Color Code and label containers for files, binders or notebooks.
Find Homes for Very Important Things
Remembering where things are can also be difficult for people with ADHD who have challenges with holding onto information, accessing, and using the information. This may result in keeping everything "in-sight" to remember where items are, only adding to the stress of finding it later.
• Arrange consistent “homes” for very important things like keys, wallet and documents.
• Use vertical files and labels for action folders, such as bills to be paid, that you may want to be in full view to get them done.
Create Clutter Consciousness
Many people with and without ADHD are blind to how clutter gets started. Clutter begins before it comes through the front door. The floor becomes a table, and the dining room table becomes the countertops, as children are herded into the house and the phone is ringing.
• Create a consciousness of where your things are going to live now, the moment you walk in the door, instead of later which becomes an abstract time in the future.
• Instead of catastrophizing and blaming yourself that, “Nothing is organized in my home. I’ll never be able to clean up;” or, "I should have done the dishes last night;" give yourself permission to stop beating yourself up.
• Adjust Your Viewpoint
• Use Cues
• Find Homes
• Create Clutter Consciousness
Try one or all of these and notice any shifts in yourself and your family.
I'd love to hear how it goes for you!
PS. Need more support to reduce overwhelm, clutter and stress and in your family?
Contact me for an ADHD Strategy Assessment and we can talk about a plan you can put into place now!
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