Saturday, May 31, 2014

Adult ADHD or Common Distractions?

Are you juggling kids, a full-time job, a side job, household responsibilities, a writing career or all of the above? As a creative right brained person I have a hard time staying focused on a given task. I have often wondered if my childhood ADHD has become adult ADHD or if my disorganization, inability to concentrate and distraction are strictly due to my creative brain. Oh look a bird! The positive benefit of my brain jumping from one thought to another is, I don't have typical writer's block. If I get stuck on a paranormal thriller I'm working on, I work on a middle grade action adventure, a picture book or I create puzzles.

Checking the internet on the topic of staying focused I found a few helpful tips.

  1. De-clutter your workspace. Start small, if you want to organize your workspace or your entire home work at it for thirty minutes to a maximum of three hours at a time. Side note for authors, in my research, I read that the chaos of clutter limits creativity. Not to mention time, there are days I waste time searching for a piece of paper with edits to make, or I have to move piles of paper and books back and forth to find room to work.

  1. Make a to do list. Not a list of everything you need to do, because that can be overwhelming and unproductive. Pick the three main things you need to accomplish for the day and list them. There are organizational apps on phones and computers, you could use a calendar or the old fashioned pen and paper. But write it down to stay focused.

  1. Limit distraction. That may include the strict act of mean setting a timer. For example, I have to work on goal #1 for twenty minutes before I can check Facebook for ten minutes.

How do you stay focused to accomplish your commitments, goals and busy lives? Please share your tips.

Please feel free to visit Victoria Roder at her website there is something for everyone, paranormal thrillers, action thrillers, picture books, middle-grade chapter books, puzzle books and devotionals. Maybe the ADHD has helped a little.


Veronica Helen Hart said...

Good timing for your blog, Rita. I'm in the middle of edits for my book due out in August and also trying to finish enough of the next one in the series to submit it and hopefully have the first two chapters included at the end of the August book.

Life does sometimes interfere. Today's List, which I do daily (i.e. make a short list), includes finishing the edits then printing and reading the book for continuity,composing a letter to the IRS at their request, watching out for our drug addicted former handyman so I can notify the local police,and later helping spouse to replace furniture in my office as he is just about finished with putting in a new wood floor. (I've been working in a small, crowed corner of the room, the desk moving as he works through the room.

So, for me, it's distractions, though I don't know how common they are.

Veronica Helen Hart said...

I MEANT VICTORIA! I hate it when people call me Virginia or Victoria when my name is Veronica so I humbly apologize for using Rita's name. Her email about another topic was right next to yours. Talk about brain disorders.

Victoria Roder said...

That is too funny, Veronica! I lost track of making my daily list and productivity dropped, now that I am back in the swing I accomplish so much more.

Big Mike said...

Hard to stay focused when so many want a piece of you time.

Michael Davis (
Author of the Year (2008 and 2009)
Award of Excellence (2012)

Mark said...

I spent at least half the classroom time from kindergarten through graduate school staring out the window, daydreaming (unsure why it took me so long to realize that if I just wrote these daydreams down, I’d have a book). ADHD? I have a pure vein of it running through my core.

Good post, Vicki.

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

Mark, I funked, or would have flunked, three grades from 1-8 if my mother hadn't begged and bribed and possibly blackmailed the teacher. I was already a year too young, with no kindegarten experience. Out-the-window was my favorite place. Now it's my reservoir.