Working to your strengths is one of the keys to living successfully with Adult ADHD.
It’s the goal I have with my ADHD coaching clients. When people ask me for advice about living more easily with ADHD, working to your strengths is one of the first strategies I recommend.
Let me share why.
A while back, one of my ADHD coaching clients asked me to write his business plan, which seemed like a good idea at the time.
He was very clear on what he wanted and had a format to follow. Though my ADHD coaching practice was full, I’m pretty good at ADHD time management. I thought I could handle the extra work.
That was all true. I did have plenty of time to write the business plan. Managing time wasn’t my problem.
You see, I used to write systems documentation for a living. In my corporate job, that’s the kind of thing I did 40 hours a week. Writing a business plan isn’t that different. Give me a format to follow, and I can produce a darn fine business plan.
Here’s the problem. I really hate doing it. I had forgotten how much I hate writing plans.
Living Successfully with ADHD
I’d forgotten that if I had a job that more suited my ADHD strengths, I might not have left the corporate world to begin with.
So, when my client asked me if I could write his business plan I thought, yes, I can do that. I can help this good person out and make some easy extra cash at the same time.
I forgot my number one rule for living successfully with ADHD.
Here’s the ugly reality. Just because you’re good at something doesn’t make it a strength.
Several months passed and I still hadn’t completed the business plan. I continued working on it until it was done, but man, it was painful.
I was good at discovering great ways to procrastinate. Amazing all the unimportant stuff I got done! But, the worst part is how the ADHD procrastinating and avoiding drained my energy. With the dreaded business plan on my to-do list, I ended my days an absolute exhausted rag, something that rarely happens when I stay in my world of strengths as an ADHD coach.
Once again, the realities of living successfully with ADHD smacked me right between the eyes. Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should. Before taking on any task, you have to consider if that something is one of your strengths. If it isn’t, and you don’t have to do it, avoid it. It’s just not worth setting yourself up to struggle.