Stress, perhaps, more than anything else can exacerbate your ADD symptoms and get in your way as you pursue your goals. You probably find that the executive functions that you find challenging because of your ADD will hinder you even more when you are stressed. So, managing your stress level is necessarily a part of managing your ADD.
In addition to making your ADD symptoms worse, you know that stress can cause you to
not eat well.
not sleep well.
get sick more often.
So, then how do to you manage your stress? Part of the answer is to take care of yourself in all of the ways covered earlier in this section. Eating well, exercising, maintaining connections etc. will certainly help decrease your stress level.
In addition to practicing the forms of self-care already mentioned, it is important to practice different types of mindfulness. A first step is to acknowledge what is causing you stress. You may be inclined to go faster and do more in other areas of your life in order to ignore what is causing you anxiety because you feel too overwhelmed by the prospect of dealing with the issue. As you know, the issue and the anxiety remain.
Alternatively, once you have identified the cause of your stress, you can decide to do something about it. That is, you can create a plan to address the issue that is causing you to worry. While you may be inclined to do more and go faster when you are stressed slowing down and giving yourself time and space to think will likely help you reach your goals more efficiently and effectively.
What are you thinking/worrying/ruminating about? Your credit card debt.
What are the facts of the situation? You have 5k in credit card debt. You are paying the minimum.
What control do you have in changing the situation?You could assess all of your spending, fixed and discretionary. Based on this, you could make different choices about how you spend your money. You could check into other cards or loans.
What choices are you willing to make in order to be more proactive and “get out of your head” about the issue that is causing you to worry?
Another form of mindfulness is meditation. Most people with ADD have far too many ideas; putting a halt to your thoughts might help more than actively problem solving. If you can slow down and clear your mind, even for a brief time, you may find that you can be more creative in your thoughts when you resume.
Before you dismiss this suggestion as being preposterous for a person with ADD, take a look at Jon Kabatt-Zinn’s book, Wherever You Go There You Are. He demonstrates how you can meditate even for a short time and still reap the benefits. You will see that you can incorporate meditation into your life in a way that works for you.
What do you want to do about the stress you currently have in your life so that you can have more space to work on your goals?