The Value of Transition Time

 

Transitions are a part of every day life. There’s big transitions, like going on vacation.  As well there are little transitions all day with text alerts, or changing the laundry while making dinner or working on a project and answering a phone call. Whether it is coming and going to work or school or starting or ending a vacation, these times can be especially challenging with ADHD. It’s not easy to switch between tasks.  Set-switching, the official name for transitions, is an aspect of self regulation, intertwined with time awareness, hyper focus, indecision and procrastination.  The value of transition time, the time between tasks, meetings and family, gives you time to reset and get ready for what’s coming next. For people with ADHD, this is especially valuable.

 

Build in and write in transition time

Take your awareness of the need for transition time to the next level by building this time into your schedule. You can do this by adding slots of time into your planner. Think through the time needed to transition as it is not all the same. To transition after a meeting, add 10 minutes between meetings and your next task. Add 30 minutes if you want to finalize notes and organize your action plan. For zoom meetings plan on logging on 10 minutes early. Write in the travel time between in person appointments and add a cushion. That means that you will likely be on time or possibly early. Adding in this time lowers your stress too.

 

Create transition rituals

We can use physical rituals that happen during transitions. No matter if the meeting is in person or zoom, we need time to reset after a meeting. Make it a habit to walk around the office of your work from home office to reset your thoughts and give yourself a physical break.

Movement and breathing can be physical ways to transition. Stretching and deep breathing give us a lift as we move to the next activity.

You can pair a ritual with a transition.  If you always have tea with your task, you can pair up to ease the transition.

 

Use technology to create a buffer

Technology can helping us prepare and transition to the next activity.  We can use the “Countdown Method” with multiple reminders set to alert to transition. Setting multiple reminders on your smart devices and home digital assistants reminds you a transition is about to happen.

 

Add structure

Giving yourself permission to stay on a task for a duration of time is a strategy too.  If you have assigned a single task to a day, such as Financial Friday, then you have permission to keep on that task all day.

Time blocking adds structure to your transition as well. This happens when you set aside to do specific work at a specific time. By deciding ahead of time the assignment, you can transition in another time block without making an additional decision. You are freed up to do the work rather than decide what is the next transition.

 

 

Work from home tips

While we are currently working from home, you need stronger transitions to help you work productively and create a boundary between home and work. Here are a few suggestions to create a transition time during your work from home time.

  • Walk the dog
  • Drink a glass of water
  • Add analog clocks to important transition locations
  • Create work boundaries with alarms to end the day

 

Incorporating transition time is a work in progress. Keep it in mind as you start these new strategies.

How I use the Notes App

How I use the notes app

 

Of all the apps that are on our phones, the Notes app is frequently our default app to use.  Most of my clients have used the Notes app to capture thoughts, ideas, information and passwords.  There is tons of information in this app.  However we can add a level of organization to using Notes app that will give it more function and organization.  There are many ways to use this app for lists, routines and notes.  Here is how I use the Notes app.

 

General information about Notes app

  • As you enter the first line, that line because the name of the list. It is in bold font for this reason.
  • Notes app has a search function and you can find your list this way with the name of the list on the top line.
  • Notes app is cloud based and can be accessed by all your devices for free.
  • Note app can be shared with others to create and use lists together.
  • Notes can be printed, shared by email or text, and locked for privacy.
  • Photos can be pasted into individual notes or as a note.
  • If you press lightly inside a note, a pop up with font options appears.

Lists

The Notes app is easy to use for lists.  Add lists would you like to have with you all the time. General lists include shopping, grocery, kids’ clothing and shoe sizes, Christmas list, air filter dimensions, medication list or any list you want to reference while out shopping, at a meeting, at a doctor’s office or away from home base. The lists I use most frequently are for business. There is a consignment list for that three month time, action lists for particular clients and a list of favorite products I share frequently with clients.

 

Routines and Reminders

Notes app can be a daily routines and reminders list with check lists.  Add a list of routines with a check circle starting each item of your list.  (Find that check circle on the bottom right of your device while working in the Notes app.) Create the list of what you want your routine to include or a series of reminders for a specific task.  As you check off, you won’t forget tasks.  Un-check the circles at the end of your work or when you have completed this series of routines.  Repeat and use again and again.

 

Notes

Depending on your typing ability, Notes app is a great choice to take notes during for personal reference, during meetings and to capture ideas.

  • Notes app can be used to reference materials of all types.  Gathering information and consolidating it can be done here.  Be sure you add a title as the top line to find your information. My clients are information seekers and like to have access to this.
  • Meeting notes are easy to find and review.  When I meet with clients, I listen, take notes in this app and share these with clients.  At the top of the note I add the name, date and session number of our meeting. It helps us track our actions and remain accountable to planning.
  • Wonder where to keep your big ideas?  It’s here within this app. I love that as you add information, the cloud keeps this updated.
  • Each year I highlight my big accomplishments. The list is named 2020 Highlights. I add to this list throughout the year and check it at the end of the year. It’s fun to see this from previous years too.

 

Over the years as I have used the Notes app more strategically. The more I use it, the more I love it!

Celebrating ADHD Awareness Month

 

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting both children and adults around the globe with executive function, planning, initiation and other challenges. There are more and more ways to “celebrate” this month and I especially appreciate learning as the optimal way to celebrate. Take time this month to check out these resources for ADHD and celebrate neurodiversity.

 

Websites

These websites offer tips, tech and more about ADHD solutions.

ADHD Awareness Month 

ADDitudemag.com

CHADD.org

ADDA-SR.org

Understood.org

 

Podcasts

Podcasts tell the stories of people with ADHD.

Faster Than Normal

Take Control

More Attention, Less Deficit

ADHD reWired

Translating ADHD

 

Books

Books are a gateway to knowledge. Most of these are available on kindle and audiobook. 

ADD Friendly Ways to Organize

The ADHD Effect on Marriage: Understand and Rebuild Your Relationship in Six Steps 

What Your ADHD Child Wishes You Knew: Working Together to Empower Kids for Success in School and Life 

 

Blogs

Blogs are personal accounts and information about ADHD.

Professional-Organizer.com

Totally ADD

ADD Consults

Order Out of Chaos

Impact ADHD

Black Girl, Lost Keys

 

Education is a cornerstone of living a thriving life.  The more educated you are about ADHD, the more you can move forward in all you do!

 

10 Things I am Learning from Home, Home School and Work from Home

learning at home home school and work from home

 

This year we are all officially back to school in many ways. We are learning from each other, learning at home from our family, learning from colleagues at work, and learning about work from home.  Here are 10 important things I have learned this fall during back to school.

  1. Manage expectations of you and your family.  It is going to be a fall of uncertainty. Managing what you expect of yourself and your students will help you keep everyone and everything calm and moving forward.
  2. Take the time to be together. This is the great “gift” of the fall. We are together learning and hopefully laughing. If you or your students need a pause, get outside and enjoy the fall (and hopefully cooler weather soon.)
  3. Set up independence with structure for you and your students.  Kids may need more than one practice at setting an analog alarm clock or getting online. They are quick at technology. Give them an opportunity to learn responsibility under your guidance.
  4. Set up specific work stations for everyone. Everyone having this structure gives a sense of a real classroom. Assigned seats work. Use a cart to access supplies nearby. That cart keeps home school organized.
  5. Recharge yourself, your student and your devices nightly.  Everything works better when it is unplugged. A common charging station helps families get a good night sleep.
  6. Teaming up has meant more and more.  That team work can be home responsibilities and school tutoring. Partner to cook and clean up after meals, get laundry complete and organize your home.  Have an older sibling or Aunt tutor a school subject, use Khan Academy or use online study apps as learning aids.
  7. Recess rocks. We all need breaks from work and school.  Set a timer and practice the pomodoro method to be productive.
  8. Use technology as much as you can. Artificial intelligence can motivate your student and keep you from one more recitation of responsibilities.
  9. Set boundaries for work. While it is uncomfortable to feel unproductive at times, stepping away from work each evening will help you build more rapport with your family and reset your perspective.
  10. Get organized and edit your stuff. With everyone in a shared space, edit out what is not used and not loved. Less stuff gives you more space.

I am sure everyone has learned so much this year. I look forward to hearing all your comments.