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ADD Friendly Ways to Organize Your Life Using the book "ADD Friendly Ways to Organize Your Life"

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Old 06-30-03, 01:49 PM
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session #1 (read up to pg.7) Start: June 27th, ongoing

Hi all!

Since I started this project, I'm going to post my answers to the questions. Please feel free to answer any of them yourself, you don't have to answer all.
Also, feel free to ask questions that you thought of.
I had a few people say that they wanted to join, but no one's posted yet, so I'm a little worried. If you're still interested, please let me know on this thread, so I know that there are still people out there!
If you don't have the book, you can still answer the questions by all means!

the "assigned reading" is up to page 7, with skimming of the general layout etc. Please read the thread: Participants, to do before june 27th for detailed instructions, if you feel you'd like more direction.
Otherwise, you can just answer the questions here. Cut and paste works well.

My answers:
1)What are some things I have tried in the past to attempt to organize my life? (books you've bought, strategies etc.)

I have bought the following books:
Do It Now! - for procrastination
Managing Your Mind - general life balance book, psychology focus
Time Management From the Inside Out
Organizing From The Inside Out

rules about cleaning up (no clothes on floor)
making daily schedules
making study schedules

2)What happened that caused the above to fall short of my goals or becoming more organized?

-I didn't know where to start, and didn't feel motivated to start. I still had questions and anxieties about doing the next steps for the organizing tasks.

-I couldn't be consistent with the routines...and the books didn't discuss ways to remind yourself to do the upkeep

-I didn't consider time or place or prep time when doing my scheduling. For example, if I wanted to log in study time, I didn't sit down to think where I feel most relaxed and comfortable studying...

3)What more would I have liked in the book(s) I've read about organizing?

-ways to ensure consistency
-more general plans - colour coding, visual people oriented suggestions
-better layout of the book
-less words, more digarams and flowcharts
-help with decision making
-tables and charts, checklists to make
-daily affirmations

**these questions are to help you recognize that you HAVE tried in the past to become more organized, whether it's through buying books, trying to implement new strategies or other ways.
So, that means you're not lazy.

(Questions to help you organize your ideas about this book)

4)Is this book organized in a way that is easy for me to read/use?
(if not, What can I use that will help make it easier? e.g. coloured sticky tabs, highlighting, bookmarking pages)

-I like the layout.. especially the "dividers" design on the side.
The bold fonts make it easier to read and understand
I also really like the headings of thing organizing, time organizing and paper organizing... because that is basically how I think of my organizing issues!

-I like the larger font and use of spaces in between topics. I find that a lot of books overwhelm my brain with so much text text text text... this one is easier to read.
-I also like the arrows with circles around the main points within the text, they highlight the important stuff
-the summary at the end is good

-more flow charts to help deal with one suggestion at a time
when I was skimming through the sections, I felt that there were a LOT of suggestions... and from experience, too many for and ADDer to try and implement all at once.
I would like to have seen a summary "action plan" at the end of the chapter... instructions about what to do for the next week or so... eg: 1)write down..... 2)choose the most relevant suggestion in this chapter 3)make a checklist for the week of daily routines, with this new task in the list, put it where you can see it 4)see how many days you can do it.

stuff like that. I find that a lot of the time I'm not sure how to add the suggestions into my life so I can stick to them. I think that seeing that I'm doing them (personal recognition by checklist) makes it more likely that I"ll do it.

(looking at table of contents) What sections/topics that appeal to me most?
(these are most likely the things that you are most challenged by at the present time)

a)Taking Charge of ADD: learning to prioritize
b)thing organizing: packrat syndrome
c)time organizing: the state of rushness
d)paper organizing: backlog blues

Which topics am I strongest in?
rank them if you like
-these will be the sections you may like to offer suggestions for!

1)streamline and simplify
2) Out of sight, out of mind.. I have done some stuff that helps
3)plenty of time thinking: I've started to get better at this! yay!

What are some strategies that help make it easier for me when starting a reading project?
these tips will be most appreciated! please post and share your approach!

-knowing that there are people out there who are interested in the same thing
-getting an idea for the layout: if it's a really dense book, looking at the outlines with major heading, then minor headings.
-typing them out also helps

What STRATEGIES am I successfully using right now in my life?
What SUPPORT do I currently have/will have available for this reading group (if required)?

-checking travel time ahead of time and aiming to get there about 30 minutes early if I'm taking the bus
-I add on 10 minutes to the time I need to be at the bus stop, and add on the travel time TO GET TO THE BUS STOP. (I have something on me I can do while I wait for the bus)

-I got colour coded hanging files for those papers that were piled on my desk... stuff I hadn't dealt with yet, and needed to be out in the open so I'd remember and know wehre they were (phone bills, stuff I need to take with me to appointments later on in the week etc)
Now they're off my desk, but I don't get stressed b/c I know wehre they are, and know I can get them whenever I want (easily), and it feels GREAT!

-my new dayplanner pages really help a lot. I let go of the guilt of not using the PDA as much as before. I use the PDA for more long term items, and the dayplanner pages for the current 3 weeks or so.

-setting out my medication each night on my bedside table, setting the alarm an hour earlier than I need to get up. I take the meds when the alarm goes off, reset it to the next hour and go back to sleep. The meds help me wake up slowly and easily so I'm not feeling dragged out first thing in the morning. I usually feel like I can think clearly and WANT to get a go on the day.

-making a checklist of things I need to do before I go to bed, for the week.I'm honest about it... if things are consistently NOT DONE, then I know that it shouldn't be there and that I need to move it to a different time of day (eg: planning breakfast, making food for next day, take empty food containers upstairs,...all need to be put somewhere else in my day)

tutor for school: she helps me stay on track for studying, and helps me sort out what works and what doesn't

student health: the director is my Dr., and she wants to meet with me once a week to keep an eye on the antianxiety meds I started

disability resource centre: coordinates my school stuff

academic advisor: talks with DRC and keeps records of my school stuff.

I'm working on getting a psychiatrist of psycholgist... but no money

What kinds STRUCTURE are being used in my life at present to help me manage my life?

-I got a more consistent work schedule: 9am everyday, which should help reset my sleep patterns
-I'm hoping to start scheduling things in time slots that I would otherwise be busy on other days, to keep the activity level during that time of day consistent.... but this is proving to be challenging

The last 3 questions are on pg.4, and I put them in to help you realize that you probably all already use these in your life! (^_^)

What are some things in my life that work AGAINST my ADD?
-daily schedule, relationships, career, family, medical etc.
(these are things that you might want to consider changing later on as we go through the book, but they might not be all possible)

a)weekends I do nothing... sleep in.
b)medical: anxiety, ADD ha ha... brain is still going going going at 2am if I don't take my meds for anxiety, anxiety keeps me from doing some stuff I want to do (go running to train for triathlon etc)
sleeplessness keeps me from getting to work by bike, or Imiss the bus, which means I have to spend money on taxi

What are some aspects of ADD that are positive?
lots of energy that is contagious to those around me
being always full of ideas
being adventurous, creative

What are some simple ways I can highlight these so others and myself can appreciate them more?

I'm full of energy
-I work teaching kids! lots of ideas:I have a binder where I keep lists of things I'd like to do if I don't have time to do them, I also mention my ideas for improvements at work to my supervisors.

- I like knitting and crocheting, so I use that to make gifts for people. I also like photography, so I decided to start a portfolio of my favourite pictures, and also frame and display some of the best.
I also enlarged my current favourite to 8.5x11 and printed it out on my computer, and put it in my clear cover for a binder I use... it's my way of "displaying" my work.

My question I added later:
What do I hope will happen with this forum?
-people will start posting.. I'm worried that no one wants to join me...
"ADD?...yeah well, at least I'll never be accused of being BORING!!"
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Old 07-16-03, 10:11 PM
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I'm so sorry and please don't be affended.....This post was so long I just couldn't read it.....
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Old 07-17-03, 12:51 PM
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I'm also overwhelmed with the length of your posts....Can this be simplified Slowpoke?

"If you change the way you look at things -- the things you look at change"

Dr. Wayne Dyer (The Power of Intention)
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