Mess It Up, a new strategy — ADD Tip o the Day 362

ADD,ADHD,adult,attention,deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD

my desk, not his.

Just learned a brand new strategy from a man with ADD or ADHD.  He couldn’t get himself to clean up his desk, and the clutter made everything harder to do, and so he was getting frustrated and kind of demoralized, which makes it harder to clean your desk or do anything else, which is more frustrating and demoralizing, etc..

So one evening he just took everything off his desk and threw it on the floor, all over the floor.  I think he did this on purpose, not just impulsively from his frustration (tho he does have ADD or ADHD).

The next morning when he came in he could hardly get to his desk, so he started picking the stuff off the floor and putting it away.  Before long it was all done and his desk was clear.  And he felt good about it, two accomplishments for the price of one.

This is a form of ‘locking yourself in’, making a commitment in a way you can’t get out of.  Brilliant!


check out the comments at the bottom of each post – clik on “comments’.  I love them.

About doug with ADHD

I am a psychiatric physician. I learned I have ADHD at age 64, and then wrote two ADHD books for adults, focusing on strategies for making your life better. I just published my first novel, Alma Means Soul. Your Life Can Be Better; strategies for adults with ADD/ADHD available at, or (for e books) Living Daily With Adult ADD or ADHD: 365 Tips O the Day ( e-book). This is one tip at a time, one page at a time, at your own pace. It's meant to last a year. As a child, I was a bully. Then there was a transformation. Now I am committed to helping people instead abusing them. The Bully was published in January, 2016. It's in print or e book, on Amazon.
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6 Responses to Mess It Up, a new strategy — ADD Tip o the Day 362

  1. Sometimes when leaving the office, I take unfinished paperwork (mail, decisions unmade, etc.) and set them on the seat of my chair. My “rule” is that I may not move the stuff until it’s been taken care of.


  2. Interesting strategy. My desk is definitely a mess but I don’t have enough stuff on it to try that. I have taken everything off, put it in a container, and then gone through it one by one. But that could be risky. If it’s off the desk and off the floor . . . it could just sit there forever!


    • that’s right, you have to have enough stuff on your desk to make this approach work. on the other hand, your desk would be clear, and you know its just gonna sit there forever anyway.
      thank you for commenting


  3. yes, we can be spinning in circles and think we’re doing something. one of the best strategies is to focus on one smallest step.
    thanks for the comment
    best wishes


  4. marc perry says:

    this made me laugh:
    “locking yourself in’, making a commitment in a way you can’t get out of, Brilliant!”

    when the degree of my own internal ‘self-negotiating’ becomes utterly exhausting in and of itself, i sometimes need help in ways that create action. i know that i am capable of creating a cloud of dust around myself that’s not possible to see through. so it’s appropriate sometimes: finding ways to escape the paralysis of analysis and just do it!


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