In the age of apps and instant messenger it is very difficult to figure out how to prioritize your life.
On top of the constant pull of technology, we with ADHD have a hard time prioritizing day-to-day tasks. So running a home, navigating a career, and raising children isn’t as intuitive for us.
We need to think** about how to use our time and energy, and if we don’t have proper support we often end up overwhelmed and grouchy.
how to prioritize your life
In order to set priorities, you have to determine your values.
I’ll share some of my values to help get you started in your thinking.
We moms tend to put ourselves last. I know I do.
I’ve had many meltdowns, and at one point told my husband and child that some things needed to change. I set some boundaries around what kinds of behavior and interactions I can tolerate at home.
Despite my irrational ranting that day, it led me to where I am now. We all need to work on ourselves or we are no good to our families.
Personal development can mean many things though. It might be seeing a therapist, or spending some time alone.
Any time you are working to know yourself better you are working on your personal development.
Steven Covey, in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, writes, “Proactive people focus their efforts on the Circle of Influence. They work on the things they can do something about.” (Affiliate link, see my full disclosure)
ADHD often leaves me feeling like my life is out of my control, but there are things that I do have influence over. Mainly, how I manage myself – my mind and my energy.
In life the only person we can really control is ourselves.
Every day I make choices about the things I can control:
I take my medication and manage my ADHD
I ensure I get exercise and proper rest
I focus my energies on my community, because it makes me feel good
I create boundaries with my time so I can relax my brain
I spend time OFF of social media so I don’t compare myself to others
Determine what really matters
Some people hoard material things. Others find their purpose in homemaking and raising a family. While still others spend their days in service to their God.
I read about the Shingon monks of Japan, who have a very interesting way of encouraging the development of inner calm. They expose themselves to extreme cold by squatting under an icy waterfall, while attempting to remain as present and composed as they might be in a warm, dry room.
Yes this is extreme, but my point is that everyone has to determine their own set of values.
At my funeral I would want to be described as warm, generous, and inspiring.
What would you want people to say about you at your funeral? (I totally stole this from Dr. Covey.)
This is a revealing way to figure out what you value and what you expect from yourself.
Be honest, this is important work.
Which hats do you want to wear
Adult women play so many roles, and wear so many hats.
We are professionals, mothers, wives, friends, sisters, coworkers, housekeepers, chefs, event planners and community organizers. Women with ADHD have the added stress of feeling inadequate in all areas.
I prefer my community/thought leader hat, my mom hat, and my life partner hat above all others.
Not that I don’t care about housekeeping, I certainly do. But when I consider my expectations of being called warm, generous, and inspiring these are the hats that best suit me.
Which hats are the most flattering for you?
manage your energy
We all have the same 24 hours every day. Unless you are Beyonce. She has more help than most.
Make the decision to set our priorities based upon our values and strengths.
Life is a series of choices. Some huge, some small and inconsequential.
Choose your actions based what you value.
When you are aligned with your values you have more energy to do everything.
I do this because it forces me to prioritize.
Business, family, personal…and occasionally household.
Taking an inventory of your personal values makes it easier to prioritize what really matters in our busy lives.
I would love to discuss how we can more effectively priorities your life and manage your time. If this is the kind of conversation that matters to you, come check us out in the Enclave.