adhd fact friday

Week Four Fact

Sensory Processing Disorder and ADHD often coexist, but sensory issues are in themselves common for people with ADHD.

I always just presumed I was right when I said I was secretly seven or twelve or whatever in relation to my reluctance to eat tons of foods for whatever reason—often texture. In fact, it can be an ADHD thing. While I worked in daycare for years with no issue, I’ve always had issues with places like bars or restaurant lounges with loud music and people trying to talk over it at the same time, combinations of dim and neon lighting. I can do concerts, but I think that’s because there’s no other place my attention is shifting between—I’m not trying to converse or anything. Face paint? Nope, nope, nope (and I don’t wear make-up and I wonder if it’s also related? Or also that I cannot be bothered). I’m fortunate that my life uniform can be hoodies, t-shirts, jeans and shorts. And runners—sandals aren’t even a thing I own, save for a few pairs of flip flops I attempt to tolerate going from hotel rooms to hotel pools (sand at beaches? Ick.). Foods? Yep, I’m secretly seven. Salsa, oatmeal and certain pasta sauces even fall into the category of things that I can’t tolerate texture wise. The smells of other foods will do it, or the taste—anything vinegar-y falls into both of these categories. I could list all the foods I can think of that I dislike but we’d be here awhile ;). (I just bought noise cancelling earphones which should actually help with some of the sound sensitivity issues.)

I haven’t been diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder, but I wouldn’t be surprised. However, at this point in my life I’m not sure knowing would solve a whole lot. The link to ADHD has been made pretty clear, and that’s good enough for me. Learn more here. 

Oh, and I should add that the weighted blanket thing has been great for me. Although my current rice-ziplocs-and-tape blanket has sprung a leak so I haven’t been able to use it for lack of remembering to fix it during the day. Put it on the to-do list!

Last Winter, Nikki and a lot of the other Smart Girls with ADHD were discussing Bullet Journaling as a planning method. So by March I finally caved and tried it.

I’ve stuck with it, which is a shock for my Google Calendar-ized self who has previously been rather planner-phobic due to mostly forgetting them at home and whatnot. Hello, I couldn’t maintain control of a pencil actually being present in my backpack throughout school, how could I be expected to have not only a thing to write with but also a corresponding notebook? I still forget it sometimes, but, it’s with me when it needs to be more often than not. Being a freelancer now, I’m pretty sure the Bullet Journal system is my number one tool for being organized. (Thanks Nikki and the Smart Girls for finally making me curious enough to try. Because I NEVER thought it would work, never mind that I’d keep it up for eight months.)

What’s a bullet journal?

 

Mine’s a half grid-half lined journal that cost $8 at Staples. There’s an official Bullet Journal but look, I can’t even keep up the index on my non-official one and you know what? That’s the joy. IT DOES NOT MATTER. There are no pre-set thingies to make me feel guilty when I don’t fill them out. Here’s an awkward picture so you can see my washi tape tabs.

http://i2.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5786/30514730252_3ce9195b89.jpg?resize=249%2C500&ssl=1

The bullet method is what actually matters (which there are a thousand variations for and that are super customizable so hey, no rules!)

Here are some snaps I took of my Bullet Journal on Wednesday.

http://i0.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5496/30595209666_b17ebdd117.jpg?resize=375%2C500&ssl=1

My system is circles for events, fill them in when they’re done, and boxes for to-do items: half filled when they are started, totally filled when they are done. It’s month end so all the invoices are due and such.

http://i1.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5613/30514774232_5c7744d7f2.jpg?resize=375%2C500&ssl=1

Here’s all the shit I have to do that is slightly more checked off now but not actually as much as it should be probably. I guess it’s only Friday as I write this…

http://i0.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5698/29997765743_01c9afc83b.jpg?resize=375%2C500&ssl=1

Zooming out, this is half of my monthly view and my work stuff that I had to get done and whatnot. I made a goals section that I realized didn’t really work because you can’t jut fill in a checkbox for a goal. Which is nice because the Bullet Journal system is all live-and-learn-y. The other page has the numbered days of the month down the left side, and then what I have to do on them but there’s not a whole lot on there because I tend to just put it into the weekly view when I need it there. Which is kind of not the point but whatever.

Clearly, it works well for me because I’ve actually been using it since March. Which is pretty cool considering I’ve never stuck with anything paper that long. I like that there’s no special notebook needed—although my interest in the Passion Planner has been piqued…

Challenge Update – Day 28

Plank
175 seconds people. That is 2:55 which is almost three minutes. Nonsense.

Meditation
Bitesize Self-Compassion on Smiling Mind. Which is maybe one of my new favourites, we will see. Also I really have to try to not just do the bitesize ones but I am not made for getting up at normal times and I’ve been super sleepy. Yes, the morning meditation thing would help.

You know what happens when you pick up your phone?

Yeah, you know it. Your phone buzzes because of a text and then you reply and ten minutes later your phone is still in your hand and you’ve scrolled through 100 tweets, 50 Facebook posts, and checked your e-mail three times. And probably sent 3 more texts and 2 Facebook messages about things you saw in your travels. Right? I know this isn’t limited to ADHD, but I find that with ADHD when I notice I am doing it, it takes a LOT to re-shift my focus back on what I was doing.

Enter Pebble.

I’ve been a Pebble user for a couple of years now. Sometimes I feel a tad cyborg-y with my Fitbit on one wrist and my Pebble on the other, but whatever.

Because now my Pebble vibrates with an alert, I check it, and if I don’t want/need to deal with it immediately, guess what? My phone stays happily face-down on my desk or in my pocket. In a much different way from Forest, I find my Pebble one of the great reasons that I check my phone less. I less haphazardly go check my phone every time it buzzes, because I can simply clear notifications from my watch and go back to what I am doing.

No, I absolutely do not have to clear notifications immediately. A lot of the time I don’t—I glance at my watch and hit back—not dismiss—and done. The alert stays on my home screen, ready for the next time I want to pick up my phone because with a quick glance, I decide if I should read/reply to it now or later. There’s less of an abyss to get sucked into on my Pebble (which is why I’m not really interested in an Apple watch, because I’d probably just get sucked in there with the interactivity anyways).

Another nice feature is reminders coming up on my watch. This is especially great if I put bus rides in my calendar—with a down button tap, I can re-check what time the bus comes from my Timeline view.

Although I totally need a Moovit Pebble app for the 90% of the time I don’t put bus times in my Google Calendar… That would be rad.

Seriously, I am not doing particularly well at this blogging challenge thing anymore. They say it takes three weeks to make a habit—I take 3 weeks to get out of what’s becoming one. I guess maybe that’s where the ADHD comes in: the novelty wears off, and so does the motivation.

I think I might be mildly more successful at this if I didn’t spend the majority of my work life writing. Which is great and I love but sometimes, you know, I don’t want to think about putting words together anymore. Or I want to go to bed at a reasonable hour to get up at a normal-people-time three days this week. (Which is super overrated by the way. Just saying. Like yes I am getting up for decent reasons, like coffee and business seminars or meetings but you know, bed is nice. Especially when it’s still dark out.)

So, yeah, I totally lapsed on this blogging thing. Which was, I suppose, possibly a bit of a self-care type move to not start seeing the world in white and black like a text composer window. And I’m almost at the end of the month, so here it is… The catch-up. Maybe November’s self care will look more like practicing self-care rather than just writing on it half-assedly. (Is that a word even?)

Challenge Update:

I can’t even catch up on the challenge update. Meditation’s been going the best but I still haven’t integrated a morning meditation—maybe a goal for November…

Planks = so hard, but so good.

Week Three Fact:
adhd fact fridayADHD sometimes comes with the opposite of being unable or having difficulty focusing. Hyperfocus is just what it sounds like: intense periods of focus, which make attention deficit disorder all the more confusing.

Yes, it seems paradoxical. Yet hyperfocus is very real to many ADHDers, myself included—ADHD is an “attention regulation disorder”—as difficult as it can be for us to focus on tasks that are boring or not mentally stimulating, it can be equally difficult for us to redirect our attention from something that is fun or interesting.

Hyperfocus can be the saving grace of people with ADHD with a deadline ahead of them, or a massive obstacle when we find something fun or enjoyable… and should be doing other things. However, sometimes we get so sucked in that it can be extremely hard to break our focus. Even people talking directly to us might not be enough to interrupt us—the polar opposite of what people perceive as our attention deficit selves.

For myself, I think hyperfocus is the reason I could read book after book when I was younger, especially when I had nothing else mentally interesting to do: if the book was interesting, that was the only place my attention went.

Day 21 Challenge Update

Plank: 155 seconds while on FaceTime with Kat. Which made it easier, actually.

Meditation: I completed the Bite Size Meditation series on Smiling Mind.