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Living Intentionally Means Skipping the Cringy Decisions
Oooff…. that meme is painfully true, isn’t it?
It made me start thinking that I would love to be able to live more intentionally. And if I could master that, then memes like this would be a little less painfully true.
But here in lies the problem. When I think about living intentionally – I think about living more slowly, meditating for hours on end or crafting all my clothes by hand. And the reality is those things are all great, but they’re just not realistic for me….someone who has brain zoomies 24/7.
Can ADHDer’s Actually Live More Intentionally?
This question got me thinking that there has to be a way for people with busy brains or ADHD, to pause, and live a little bit more slowly so that they can make better choices in the moment
Because here’s the problem – when you don’t live intentionally, you’re never quite there a hundred percent of the time. And when that happens, you tend to forget a lot.
Did I feed the dogs? Did I take my. Pills, did I pay the taxes?
And this constant second-guessing creates a drain on our cognitive energy (which is limited to begin with).
Also, when we’re not present, or being intentional about how we spend our time, no matter how busy we seem to feel, we’re always worrying that we didn’t get enough done.
So we continue adding more and more and more to our plate with the desire to feel more “productive”. And that’s where the overwhelm and chaos starts to build up.
I see how this happens, both in my clients and in my own life, but we’re not present or intentional enough to catch it in the moment.
Why We Unintentionally Take on WAY Too Much
The reality for most ADHDer’s is that we’re so easily distracted by new sparkling novel things, very often because we’re trying to escape the discomfort in the present moment. That might be driven by boredom, overwhelm or lack of clarity around what we’re supposed to be doing. So we look for something to distract ourselves.
And in those moments, if we can be intentional enough to catch ourselves, we can take a moment to consider what we’re bumping up against and try to address it as opposed to avoiding it.
How to Create the Space to be more Intentional
Okay, I realize that pausing to examine what’s happening in the moment is really hard for fast thinkers. We’re not wired to stop and ponder. So what’s the solution?
- If your trigger is saying yes by default when you should be saying no, then practice making “no” your default, then come back with a yes later on if you want to.
- If your trigger is impulsive purchases based on Instagram influencers, unfollow all of them. Be ruthless with your influences!
- If your trigger is wasting time on your phone when you should be working, don’t keep your phone anywhere near you.
- If your trigger is overeating or over drinking when you’re watching TV at night, keep any and all alcohol and snack foods out of the house indefinitely.
These choices may seem a little harsh, but they’re actually designed to make life easier. We tend not to default to poor habits when they aren’t easy to access. So instead of relying on being intentional in every moment, you intentionally design your space and activities to give you the greatest chance at living the way you truly want to live.
If you can commit to starting with small changes, and practice often, no doubt you will see more intentional outcomes before too long.