The Holidays With ADHD
With the holidays quickly approaching, you know that the symptoms of your ADHD do not take a holiday. There's the running into time management issues, multitasking, to perhaps even the disorganization that causes you to be overwhelmed. The holidays may also make you feel pressured to get so much done in so little time.
This is where you need to take a step back and realize that if you can manage both the chaos of the holidays and the symptoms of ADHD, you can make the holidays a lot more enjoyable and less stressful.
How to Survive the Holidays With ADHD
While you may be overwhelmed with the struggles the holiday can bring because of your ADHD, this handy guide will provide you with all the tips you need to make this holiday the best one yet.
Time management skills are essential for those with ADHD. To make the holidays free from stress, plan ahead for all of your Christmas and New Year activities.
If you're not hosting a holiday dinner or party, you can begin with asking your family or loved ones what their plans are during the holidays, ask where Christmas dinner or the New Year's Eve party will be hosted, and what time you need to be at these events. Once you're aware of the plan and details, you can start the time management process.
There are time management applications available on your computer and smartphone that can make this task a simple one. You can plan parties, gift wrapping, and any other activities within one easy-to-access application. Some ideas include 'Where’s the Milk' and Evernote.
Stick To It
Once you create a routine, stick to it. Structure can be easy to forget about, but it’s vital.
You’ll be surprised how much easier the holidays are for you by simply sticking to your initial plan. Also, you don’t have to only include holiday activities within the schedule. Adding in medication times and therapy sessions will make your planned schedule as efficient as possible.
When you find yourself with free time in between your routine or time management plan, you can spend that time to unwind and de-stress, or finish up smaller tasks that you haven't been able to complete yet.
Prepare for Changes
While you may have a set routine that you plan to follow to the letter, sometimes unexpected changes happen, and you need to be prepared for them. When you encounter a change, rather than getting worked up over it and letting it affect you deeply, simply incorporate this change into your daily plan, and you’ll get along much easier.
Take Advantage of Regular Resources
Applications aren’t the only handy tool available. Chances are you have a calendar in your home – well it’s time to start using it! Calendars are a great way to offer yourself with an extra reminder of your scheduled due dates. You can also start using a planner where you can add daily notes to keep yourself on track better.
If the pen and paper technique doesn't quite work for you, you can always set up reminders on your phone's calendar, your calendar's app will remind you anywhere from five minutes to an hour before your next task or event even begins.
Create a Travel Plan
Traveling during the holidays can be a lot of fun, but it can also be very stressful without a solid travel plan. When traveling on a plane, you may want to choose a seat close to the aisle, allowing you to get up and move around easily should you become impatient. If you’re driving in the car, look at a map to plan frequent stops that’ll help you unwind and stick to your overall plan.
Plan Shopping Trips
The stores can get a little crazy around the holiday season, but you can avoid a lot of the chaos by simply planning ahead.
Go shopping during off-peak hours, as these are the times when the store is less crowded. Typically, during the weekday the best times are early in the morning (right when the store or mall opens), a little after lunch, and right after work hours.
Also, take breaks when needed so you don’t get too overwhelmed. You don't need to buy everything in one go. If you need to make an additional trip, that's alright too.
Plan Gifts Ahead of Time
Buying gifts for your loved ones can add to the chaos when you do not plan properly. There's a chance you may spend more than you need to and may find too that you're buying things for yourself rather than for your loved ones.
By planning your gift shopping out throughout a few weeks, rather than cramming it all into one day, you’ll have a much better time while shopping, won’t feel overwhelmed, and will be able to check off everyone on your gift list.
Take It One Day at a Time
While these changes may not feel like a huge deal, you’d be surprised how much of a difference they can make this holiday season, and you’ll enjoy every moment of your holiday to the fullest. Remember to take it one day at a time during the busy holiday season – there's no need to rush everything or push yourself.