It all started with my Word of the Year for 2017! I’m a team leader and independent consultant with Usborne Books & More (UBAM). My team leader asked the members of the team to think of one word that would define our year 2017 … our Word of the Year. I was sitting in front of a blank piece of paper and I swear if brains made the same loud annoying high-pitch sound that fire alarms make when they go off while you are in the kitchen cooking bacon (everything tastes better with bacon, right?), my whole neighborhood would have thought that our house was on fire. I couldn’t think of one word if my life depended on it. I had a basic idea of what it was I wanted my year to be like and what I wanted to focus on, but I couldn’t come up with just ONE word that would summarize all of it.
A day later—while my husband, the kids and I were driving on the interstate—I told my husband about my dilemma. He told me to describe what I wanted to put in just one word. I explained it and with the biggest grin he said: “Babe, your Word of the Year is Aderall!” I had no idea what that was. He said that it is a drug that people who suffer from ADHD take. We both giggled, but you know what? It made me think! Could he be right? I knew I had been suffering from depression for years, but ADHD?!?! What if he was right? You must know, I had just started seeing a therapist to help me cope with my depression … I decided to ask her. To make a long story short, a couple of weeks later I was officially clinically diagnosed with ADD/ADHD!
Those who know me know that I hate taking meds. I was already on antidepressants, I didn’t want to add any ADHD meds. The therapist and I agreed that we would try to find other strategies to help me with this disorder.
During the tests, some of the things we found were:
- I have an attention span of 45 min max
- I need to switch activities to not get bored and start getting distracted
- I need something to bring my focus/brain back to the task I’m working on if my mind starts wandering
- Having a long to-do list makes me start multiple tasks and at the end of the day I get frustrated because I didn’t get any or hardly any of them done 100 %
Keeping this in mind, I decided that I wanted to give a timer a try. I had the genius idea to use the kitchen timer I had in my kitchen for when I cook eggs. Little did I know that this $1 item would be more effective than any drug could ever be! Not only have I started timing my activities (setting it to no more than 45 minutes, then switch to a different activity when it rings), the ticking also reminds me of the task I’m supposed to be working on if my mind starts wandering. Genius, don’t you think? This is what I call the super power of a kitchen timer lol.
Call it divine intervention like me having the idea of using a kitchen timer or call it coincidence! Whatever you want to call it, this higher power, fate or coincidence made me come across something really cool! You see, since I believe that I need structure, I started looking for ways to help me be structured, e.g., check lists, planners, etc. As I was googling, I came across Laura’s page www.IHeartPlanners.com. Laura makes some amazing printables, printables for all areas in your life … from chore lists, to meal planning lists, to daily dockets and sales trackers and the like. I signed up for her newsletter. In one of those newsletters, she mentioned a Focus Mode Sheet that helps her prioritize. I looked into it and was blown away. THAT RIGHT THERE WAS THE ANSWER TO MY PRAYERS!!!
Who would have thought that a kitchen timer and a Focus Mode Sheet would be my lifesavers!!!