Impatience

impatience adhd zen pirsig
“Impatience is close to boredom but always results from one cause: an underestimation of the amount of time the job will take. [F]ew jobs get done as quickly as planned.

“Impatience is the first reaction against a setback and can soon turn to anger if you’re not careful. Impatience is best handled by allowing an indefinite time for the job, particularly new jobs that require unfamiliar techniques; by doubling the allotted time when circumstances force time planning; and by scaling down the scope of what you want to do.

“…[O]ne of the first warning signs of impatience is frustration at not being able to lay your hand on the tool you need right away. If you just stop and put tools away neatly you will both find the tool and also scale down your impatience without wasting time or endangering the work.”

Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Scanned from my 1985 paperback copy, which teaches me new things every time I open it.

Deadlines — Duke Ellington

I don’t need time.
What I need is a deadline.

— Duke Ellington.

For me, it’s more like, “I don’t need inspiration. What I need is a deadline.”

What do you need to “get it done”?

Toolkit: Alarms and Simple Devices

A partial list of alarms and simple devices to manage ADHD:

  1. Hourly chime: on your smart phone or watch, to help you remember that time is passing, that you should check to make sure you’re doing what you intend
  2. Hourly (or other) alarm on your computer: customized to remind you to stay on task
  3. Calendar alarm on computer or smart phone: to remind you of appointments or scheduled tasks.*
  4. Smart phone or physical timer to use the Pomodoro Technique for focused, time-limited efforts.

More to come…

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*Set your alarm to include transition time! Got a meeting at 2:30 p.m. down the hall? Set your  alarm for 2:15 so that you can wind down what you’re doing, gather what you need for the meeting, and stop by the water fountain or toilet on your way to the 2:30 meeting.

Productivity Blast: The Pomodoro Technique(R)

With the Pomodoro Technique(R), you focus on one task for a specific bite of time (e.g., 25 minutes), then stop for a planned break.

It’s a proven method that can help you from Day One, with zero cost. Or if you want more coaching and tools, the Pomodoro Technique(R) creators have plenty to offer you.

Here’s their basic method:*

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*Image from the Pomodoro Technique(R) website. ADHD9to5.com is not affiliated with the Pomodoro Technique(R) organization, and we will make no money if you buy their products. But we do think they’re great!

Put a Time Limit on Your Breaks

Breaks are great!

The hard part is remembering to get back on task.*

Set a timer so you can really enjoy your break, confident you’ll get back to work after ten minutes or however long you’ve decided to get away.

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*”Let’s see, I just did a good hour of work, so I ought to take a break. Maybe I’ll go check the mail. Oh, look, an article about fitness. Hey, maybe I’ll take a walk — it’s beautiful outside. No, I don’t really have time for that — smart ADHD management! Time to get back to… oh, geez, look at my car’s headlights. Foggy. I really ought to fix that. Isn’t there some spray I can buy to buff that out? I’ll look online as soon as I get back inside. It’ll only take a second…just quick search on Google and… [four hours later] HOW IS IT FIVE O’CLOCK ALREADY?