Success through Self-Awareness
Clients always come to coaching very excited to get “systems” in place so they can follow through and get things done. Clearly, it is essential to have a system that involves planning and prioritizing and setting up structure and reminders. I regularly work with my clients to help them get organized. But part of that system has to be catching yourself when your ADHD mind is taking you off track. That means getting yourself to stop surfing the internet and back on task or not giving into the temptation to clean out your junk drawer instead of working on that proposal due in a few days. Cultivating this self-awareness is one of the most important things I emphasize with my clients.
So how do you do it? One way is setting periodic reminders on your phone to check in with your plan for the day (you have one, right?) Are you where you intended to be at that point in day? If not, assess where you are getting off track and refocus. One recent client, who was so frustrated by her inability to follow through on what she intended to do on any given day, was so excited by how effective these “mindfulness check-ins” worked for her. When her phone alarm went off at strategically determined times of the day, she reviewed her plan and figured out how to move forward. Everything started to fall in place after that. It doesn’t mean every day went completely as planned, but it did give her the feeling that she could manage herself and get things done.
Self-awareness also means understanding why you turned to a distraction in the first place. Were you unsure of how to start the task? Feeling anxious about it? This understanding of your behavior will help you troubleshoot a solution. Unsure of how to start the task, then break it down into small parts and start with one small step. Feeling anxious? Get out of your head and into your body for a few minutes, whether it’s a quick walk, jumping jacks or deep breathing.
Rachel has been coaching for 13 years and she still get excited to work with each new client. She works with college students and adults who are diagnosed with ADHD and those who are not diagnosed but have similar issues. She built her coaching practice in San Francisco, where she founded the CHADD ADHD Success Group. She draws on 14 years of experience in business and education to bring multiple perspectives to her coaching. Click here to find Rachel in the JST Directory and connect with her.