My first blog update was about Executive Function and Tom Brown’s explanations. These blog articles include a mixture of ideas, strategies and tips learned from a variety of speakers at different sessions I attended. Today, Kim Kensington, an engaging, experienced speaker, psychologist and stand up comic! (Truly. Check her bio.)
Kim Kensington, psychologist. Her session: Consistently Inconsistent: How to Make a Habit.
Kim was diagnosed as an adult, not long ago, with inattentive AD/HD.
- Habits take 21 days, for the person with ADHD, just to make an “imprint,” not the actual habit. (I have read research which says it takes 6-7 time longer for the person who has ADHD. – sfw)
- Cue-response-reward: the framework for creating your habit.
- To do lists: super difficult for the inattentive ADHD, because it means so many machinations and turning over of details in your head, not a strength.
- Instead, use less detail at first. Deal with a category of your life, one at a time; set a timer and do all the tasks associated with that category …and respect the timer (alarm) when it goes off.
- For your task or goal: `It is remarkably different when other people are involved ` (Who is on your team?): Involvement can be for accountability, acknowledging, endorsing, recognizing progress or simply doing the task with you (in person or virtually).
- Investigate apps to shut off technology, for example, if you stay too long on Facebook in the morning, or are late because you’re still on it, or have trouble getting to bed because you can’t pull yourself away.
- Anti procrastination for the inattentive inclined: Be near the task. Don’t actually start it. Just move the materials closer to you as the first step. Approach it gingerly.
- Point of performance: This is the support you need running up to and getting started on tasks. It is difficult often for the inattentive person.
- Strategies from Kim:
- Tie to another habit.
- Think of a `pre flight` checklist.
- Timer ` just 5 minutes, no more.
- Strategies from Kim:
- Getting up off the couch:
- Use a timer with a sound you find obnoxious.
- Toss the timer/alarm across the room.
- Use snooze, never off, until you are up off the couch.
- Call a friend while lying down.
- Watch a funny video. Get your energy going. (And dopamine!)
- Listen to high energy music.
- Move your toes, then one limb at a time.
- Allow the adult or child to choose what type of reward is truly going to motivate?
- Hint: Money is not a reward. What someone can buy with the money is the reward?
- Use short term rewards. The longer into the future the reward is, the less motivating. Find ways to break up time and give smaller rewards and sooner.
Her parting words of advice?
Be humble about your ADHD. Realize how big this ADHD is. Have self-compassion.