As the school year starts coming to an end, teachers will be cramming even more tests and extra work into your already hectic life. These techniques can help to keep you from feeling defeated and helpless as your ADHD tries to take control. For those who don’t have ADHD, but still struggle with similar symptoms, you can benefit from this list too!
- Watch your Time - Having a visual approach to your timer can really help you sit a little longer and focus better on studying, as whenever you look at the clock, instead of numbers, you can see visually how much “red time” you have left until your next break. Set the timer for 12 minutes, place the clock right next to you, and study away as the red gets smaller. You can download this free timer App on IOS here: Timer App
- Keep Calm and Fidget on - Keep your twirly, twiddly fingers and hands busy by giving them something to do while you focus on your work. If you enjoy clicking pens, twirling hair, squishing things, or playing with manipulative toys, then a fidget toy may become your best friend. Check out these awesome websites for non-expensive fidgets. Therapyshoppe.com
- Snacks! - Looking through endless studying and homework can make you bored and overwhelmed very quickly. Try this awesome tip to reward yourself every few minutes, using your favorite food. For example, take a bag of popcorn and put a few pieces all over the page you are on. Then begin reading or working. Once you get up to a part with popcorn on it, you can enjoy your little treat! Keep on reading to get the rest of your delicious snack!
- Teach the Mirror - Sometimes reading material to yourself just isn’t going to get it into your brain. One way to learn something well is to teach it to others, but that might be too intimidating for you. A perfect solution is to get a small mirror and prop it in front of you or you can go sit in front of one. It’s easy to talk to ourselves in a mirror- don’t lie, you’ve done it before! :) Teach the person in the mirror everything he/she wants to learn. Be excited and energetic as if you were explaining your work to a younger student.
- Longer Testing Time - While not every teacher or professor will allow this, as some tests are on a strict time limit, its worth the shot to try and ask your teacher, well in advance, if you can have some extended time while taking the test. Explain to your teacher that giving you extra time will help you slow down and be calmer and therefore be able to think clearer and have a higher chance of passing. If you are honest and show your willingness to try your best, your teacher may see your side, and give you the time that you need.
Take Care of YOU! - Having ADHD takes its toll on our energy and patience, it makes you overwhelmed with the smallest of things, and makes it hard to keep up with everything else. Set aside a moment in between studying for finals or even on a work-free day, to make sure you take time for yourself and do something for you. Listen to music or relaxing soundtracks like ocean waves or water bubbles that you can find for free online. Take a walk with a big sweater, your favorite snack and leave the phone off. Another thing to do is to take a short nap on a blanket under the sun. My personal favorite, is to do yoga with this woman’s instructional yoga videos. Check out her Youtube channel, she has such a soothing voice and her yoga sessions are incredible.
- Remember Important Info - Something that I struggle with everyday, and I know many others who have ADHD struggle with too, is major forgetfulness and memory issues. Although this is not our fault, it affects not just ourselves, but other people around us feel the repercussions. One thing that works for me when writing it down is too much, is to open my voice recorder on my phone and ramble and rant a whole bunch of important information to listen to and sort through later.
- Keep yourself going! - Living with ADHD can be very challenging, it’s important to remind yourself throughout the day all the things that you can do right. Take a sticky note pad and write your favorite quote of the day, and words that give you strength. Stick them in places you are hanging out or working in. My personal favorite is to stick them on my dashboard while driving so I can remind myself, when my brain wanders to negative thoughts, how awesome I am.
- Creative Note taking - One way to stay focused and to keep yourself from getting overly bored while listening to lectures and classes, is to write notes creatively and with colors. Try different shapes and boxes, layouts and flow charts to make writing notes more interesting, while also keeping it very organized! You can find lots of note-taking inspiration online, like on Pinterest or Instagram, but here are a few photos to demonstrate how to spice up your note taking.