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Not-So-Obvious ADHD Time Management Hacks

Procrastination Clock ADHDIn the realm of teen and adult ADHD natural remedies, perhaps no subject is talked about as much as time management.

It is, after all, one thing we almost universally suck at. But just as universally, seems we hear similar time management tips over and over. Most are legit and many are powerful if adopted, but at the request of one of our blog readers, I wanted to take a fresh swing at this topic and churn up some effective strategies you might not have heard a million times before.

Here goes…


Protein Power Pops

When you’re sitting at your desk trying to think and move things forward, but you’ve hit a wall — maybe in the late morning or mid-afternoon – you’re wasting time. You’re getting declining returns on your efforts and you’re just frustrating yourself. Keep a healthy protein snack handy at all times – nuts/seeds are best. A handful of nuts (NOT sugary or carbo-loaded snacks) with one bit of dried fruit such as apricot tossed in, will fire you back up. And repeated protein pops whenever you start to drag will power you through to quittin’ time or meal time. This can add an hour or more a day to your productive output.

Reel In Rumination

This is a huge time (and energy) waster. As I sit here writing this particular section, I have an occasional “urge” do ruminate on a couple of negative things that came my way today. Nothing too horrible – just the kinds of things my mind instinctively wants to mull over a bit…maybe get some violins playing in the background so I can have a legitimizing soundtrack to abet my feeling bad. But STOP!, I tell myself…with a simple reminder that dwelling is the opposite of propelling

Worry Does Not

Yep. I could’ve indulged in that mini woe-is-me episode. But it would have stolen a good few minutes from me, not to mention some mental energy that I have better things to put toward. So instead, I’m now back to writing this blog. And propelling, not dwelling.

Re-Wire Waiting Time

We waste a lot of time waiting (e.g., in line at the store or post office) – and waste a lot of mental energy being frustrated at having to wait. I don’t like waiting any more than the next antsy-pants ADHD fidgeter. So, when I’m waiting, I’m doing…one of four things:

  1. Deleting unimportant emails (on my smartphone, of course…If you don’t have one yet, get one). I’m not reading important ones unless they’re urgent — just cleaning house, so that when I’m back to work I can focus energy on the emails that matter.
  2. Scanning the headlines. I’ve reduced my media intake dramatically – but I still have to stay on top of certain news and pop culture, so I scan a few media outlet apps on my phone. (And I resist the temptation to surf into titillating but irrelevant articles!)
  3. Meditating. If I’m caught up on email garbage duty and am abreast of top headlines in my business sectors, I…quiet…my…mind. Nothing fancy – just switching from listening to mental noise, to listening to my breathing for a coupla minutes. And I’ll usually throw in a Power Pose…so that when the wait is over and I’m back to work, I’m ready to CRUSH IT.
  4. Problem-solving. When there’s more than a five-minute wait – e.g., a doctor’s office or waiting for my flight to take off – I go into problem-solving mode. What’s something that’s been puzzling or frustrating me lately? What active project needs some mental lovin’? Let me just open up my ADHD-gifted-mind and noodle around with that issue a bit. Hmmm. Ooh! That’s a good idea!

Note that all four have a forward-moving purpose. I’m not engaged in small talk on the phone or texting…I’m not watching the latest video of cute kittens. And just as important, I’m not burning energy on being frustrated – cuz I ain’t really waiting!

“Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have the same number of hours in a day that were given to Helen Keller, Michaelangelo, Mother Theresa, Leonardo DaVinci and Albert Einstein.” H. Jackson Brown Jr.     Tweet That!

In closing, if you were to put just two of these three time hacks into regular practice, you’d start seeing your to-do list shrink a bit…all those stickies on your desk might start to thin out. You might even start to feel some control over that slippery clock.

So start by giving one (not all – just one) of these a try and let me know what you experience. Maybe you have a less-known ADHD time management hack of your own you’d like to share. We’re all ears!!

Crush Father Time – or he’ll crush YOU!


P.S. – Are you following @ADDCrusher on Twitter yet? Please do, and you’ll start seeing #CrusherTip’s in your feed. Lots of great tidbits of wisdom, tips and solutions. You can of course also search #CrusherTip on Twitter. -ab

P.P.S.  If you haven’t yet heard of www.CrusherTV.com, I hope you’ll check it out. Each Monday night at 10pm we “air” another episode chock full of useful productivity tips and “brain hacks”, and our Guest Experts provide more great ideas. Tons of other benefits for members, including free group coaching sessions. Hope to “see” you there! ab


10 Responses to “Not-So-Obvious ADHD Time Management Hacks”

By Andrea Nordstrom - 1 November 2014 Reply

Ha ha, love it. I see a photo series coming on here… Crusher doing Power Poses all over North America…

By ADD Crusher - 2 November 2014 Reply

Thanks for the idea, Andrea! And so it shall be!!!

By Andrea Nordstrom - 30 October 2014 Reply

LOVE (LOVE, LOVE!!!) the reframe on using waiting time for a forward movement purpose. When you look at it that way, we should all be grateful for a bit of built-in pause time (…waiting in line) to get some movement on these important areas that often don’t have an inherent space of their own!

By ADD Crusher - 30 October 2014 Reply

So glad you like Andrea. And just before I was presenting my “Practical Zen Brain Hacks” to a CHADD group in L.A. last week, I stopped to gas up my truck — typically eats up $100+ and a good few minutes. But I realized while standing there that the gas pump is the perfect place for a Power Pose. And a little meditation while yer posin’. Three birds, one gas-up. So many opportunities…not to DO stuff, but to slow down and do NOTHING but power back up…AB

By Julie Davis - 29 October 2014 Reply

Watched your Expo video just now and read all info on the Crusher products, thinking how would this work for our younger students who are above average but failing in social skills and achieving their potential.
Downloaded your free book. Thinking about your first video. JD

By ADD Crusher - 29 October 2014 Reply

Hi Julie — thanks for watching the ADHD Expo piece I did. I think mindfulness techniques are perfect for young people. There is a considerable range of curricula offered by various companies (Goldie Hawn’s MindUP being one of them) to school districts. Right now we’re actually exploring adapting out videos for very young students (K-5!) in the San Diego system. Stay tuned for that.

But meantime, don’t be shy about trying one of the videos. If you find it is not relevant to your research we’ll give you a full refund, no questions asked….A

By Janice - 11 October 2014 Reply

Enjoying all of these great tips, I cant read enough of them especially on Time Management as mentioned above. just great, thanks so much, I enjoy your informative and fun videos and info on this page even more than reading FB, 🙂 fb is my time waster. I try to put a time limit on it. thx again for all the useful information presented in a captivating and motivating way.

By ADD Crusher - 12 October 2014 Reply

Thanks Janice. Yes, FB is a sinkhole — a collapsed start that sucks in all surrounding light…if not used in very small doses. A good guard might be to ask yourself, when you’re tempted to spend some time on FB, “What am I doing right now? Or what SHOULD I be doing? Cuz if I’m headed to FB Land, it’s probably an ESCAPE from the Land of Should!” Best of luck in your crushing!

By Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, MCC, SCAC - 29 September 2014 Reply

Loved this, Alan. As I continue adding to my ADD & Time Series, this will be among the links I will use as Related Content. GOOD job!
(Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
– ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
“It takes a village to educate a world!”

By ADD Crusher - 29 September 2014 Reply

Thank you so much MGH!!! Honored to receive kind words from the Empress of ADHD coaching (and so much more!)…A

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