10 Tools for ADHDers, from an ADHDer.
1. Sticky Notes
These little things have been an absolute god sent to me. When you have ADHD, or Executive Functioning problems, your brain can jump around so fast that you completely forget a great idea you had. By using sticky notes, you can avoid this!
2. The Fidget Cube
I have heard mixed reviews about this little cube. Personally, I really like this tool for when I am at work or in class (a place where I don't want it to be noticeable that I am fidgeting). The cube is actually pretty small and has a different fidget on every side, so it can meet all of your fidgeting needs --but, it is not always silent like the original company claimed. If this is a tool you think could be useful to you, I would try it out and see for yourself. You can get one on amazon for a good price and they come in all different colors!
3. Mini Coloring Pages
I have always been a notorious doodler. I find that when I am doodling, I can actually comprehend what someone is saying to me, instead of my mind jumping all over the place. So my sweet mom bought me some of these miniature coloring pages. These little things are just three inches tall, so you can color without it being completely obvious to everyone in the room. And their size allows you to finish them in a short time span, yay! (We all know ADHDers are known for not finishing long projects).
4. Google Keep
Google Keep is my new favorite thing! You can write complete lists, notes to file away, or just write a quick "sticky note" type of message and it will automatically be saved to your google keep which you can access through your google account or through the Google Keep app. And if you didn't notice, you can color code too!
5. Play Dough
Okay, so maybe I just like playing with play dough . . but I swear this really works! When I am reading a few chapters, or trying to focus on a movie, I just open one of these little containers and start molding. The best thing about this is it makes no noise! But the down side is the bright colors that make the dough stand out. Plus, this is typically used by children so I have gotten the "why do you have play dough in your bag?" question a few times. Luckily for me, I work with little kiddos so it's no big deal, but this might not be the best option if you are trying to fly under the radar. (You can get a pack of six at the dollar store, BTW).
6. Sensory Ball
I actually discovered this one by accident. I have one of these in my bag just in case one of the kids I work with needs some sensory input, but one day I thought hey.. maybe this could work for me too. So I started squeezing the ball whenever I was trying to focus or felt like I had a lot of built up frustration and it works well. Plus, this was only $1 at the dollar store!
7. How to ADHD Videos
Jessica and her crew are absolutely amazing! Jessica has ADHD herself and makes a lot of how to videos for people with ADHD. The videos are super interesting and quirky, so you don't have to worry about your mind wondering! And most importantly, Jessica takes her channel very seriously and only makes videos after she has consulted with other specialists about complex topics. Highly recommend! Their channel can be found here.
So I will admit, I have never been the best at keeping a planner. But, I realized you need to find what works for YOU. So maybe I will never carry around a small planner, or remember to put dates in my phone, but I do like having a desk calendar. Right when I get a new syllabus or client schedule, I fill it out for months in advance and color code along the way. But, this is what works for me, there are so many other ways to keep yourself organized. There will probably be a future blog post just about this!
9. Gel Highlighters
Okay, so they don't have to be gel highlighters, but I highly recommend these highlighters from target because they don't bleed through paper, they roll up so you have a lot of ink, and they have inspirational messages on them! But any highlighter will work. These are a great idea for those that have executive functioning (EF) problems. By using highlighters, you are helping your mind group things together more easily and that can help with comprehension/recall of information.
10. Things To Do
Last but not least, I recommend having a "things to do" folder or list. This tool really helps me with procrastination. Since I am such a procrastinator I can get really overwhelmed with all of the things I have to do. By writing them down, it not only gives me a plan of attack, but I get a sense of accomplishment as I cross things off my list.
JUST A NOTE: Always find what works for YOU and things that YOU like. As you may have noticed, all of my tools (the Things To Do folder, my sticky notes, etc.) are pretty girly, because this is the type of stuff I am attracted to. Find what draws you in and what YOU can stick to. Good luck and if you have any of your own unique tips, please share them!
Disabilities can be difficult for parents to explain to young children, but it doesn’t have to be. In this Daniel Tiger episode, a new child enters Daniel’s class, but Daniel is confused by the braces the girl uses to walk. The girl simply explains that she needs them to walk because of an unspecified disability. The children begin to talk about other ways they are different with a positive spin, pointing out that Prince Wednesday has glasses to help him see and Daniel has a tail unlike the other children. This episode makes it easy for children to understand that as Daniel says, “We are more alike than different”. And that it is okay to have differences, that is what makes everyone so interesting!