If you’re like millions of people who live with one or all of these issues, you’re likely not going to ever completely conquer them. Unfortunately, you have to learn to live with them, but there are tips and tricks for making your life more manageable. These tips help me from becoming frustrated and wasting a lot of time.
Make permanent homes for important objects — or get multiples
People with ADHD have problems with something called “object permanence,” which is related to having an anxious-style attachment with your caregivers growing up. (In a nutshell, if you grew up in a dysfunctional or abusive home, you’re more likely to have ADHD.)
I used to lose my keys several times a week. For a time when my husband was commuting out of town and leaving the house earlier than me in the morning, I would often resort to calling him at work in a panic to ask him if he’d seen my keys, which was unfair to him and wasted both his time and mine. Now that we live in a house with a windowless garage, I never lose my keys because I leave them in the ignition of my car. If I absentmindedly pull them from the ignition and walk into the house with them, as soon as I realize they’re in my hand, I turn around and put them back in the car before I set them down somewhere in the house and lose them. Obviously not everyone can leave their keys in their car. But you can designate a key bowl or a key hook or some specific place those keys can live. It doesn’t have to be one place, either. You can have two or three designated spots in the house for important objects like your glasses, or even a designated spot in each room. That way, if you’re searching the whole house for a single set of glasses, you’ll have at least narrowed down the number of places they could possibly be. Alternatively, if you can afford it, buy several pairs of glasses or an extra set of keys, but still leave them in designated spots so you know where to look for them.
Make lists of tasks and errands
Lists work well for all three of these conditions. You can make lists on the notes app on your phone, or with a pen or pencil on good old fashioned paper. The moment you remember something important you need to do, write it down…