Two Tips About Goals and ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 608

Achievable Goals
My wife asked me, as she often does, "What are you doing?"
"Trying to get organized," I replied.
"That's your motto", she said.
"No, that's my mantra."
What's the difference?
But then I had a small insight. Maybe getting organized is not a 
destination, but a journey? 
Maybe it is not a goal, but a process? 
The strategy is to only set achievable goals.
Maybe "getting organized" is not one of them.

Small Goals
This morning I used a related strategy - set small goals. 
I was doing my exercises. I set my goal for 20 reps. 
When I finished the 20 reps, I said, I can do six 
more. And I did, for a total of 26 reps. 
But I think if I had set my initial goal for 26 reps, I likely could not have done it. 
Then that would've been demoralizing, which I do not need. 
This way,if I'd only been able to do 20, that would have been a success.
I try to set small achievable goals.
Then if I overachieve, that's all to the good.

add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,goals,strategies

Maybe goals help us stay focused?


Bonus Links:
Goals and ADD ADHD


More On Goals

And Even More

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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12 Responses to Two Tips About Goals and ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 608

  1. Pingback: Expectations in ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 623 | ADDadultstrategies

  2. Getting organized is definitely a journey and not a task.


  3. Amanda- closest to perfect is pretty good!
    thank you for commenting


  4. rammkatze says:

    Overachieving does make us feel good! For example, I had a list of items (small steps to organize the living room) that I was procrastrinating on. A couple of days ago, I was quite in a depressive mood and decided my ADHD wasn’t gonna get the best of me so I said “make two of the things in the list!” and after I did them, I said “well, the third one is so easy, you can do it even while watching netflix”. And I did! But I wonder: is there anything where people are refusing to set goals? I know from experience that whenever I set a goal for weight-loss or changing food habbits (impulse-eater. Easier to handle since on my meds), so I’ve been working on it with no fixed goal in kind and getting some very good results…

    Liked by 1 person

    • ram- that was a great experience you had. hope you will rememberget that strategy for next time -“well, at least i could get this done.”
      yes, some people dont like to set goals, and not everything needs a goal, but i generally function better with them.
      good for you on the weight loss – that is very hard to do.there is a trick, you dont focus or set a goal on the weight, but just on the food habits, and maybe even just on one habit – no more sodas, for example. then the weight will take care of itself.
      another funny way to think of it is that you have no control over your weight, but you do have control (some anyway) over what you eat.
      anyway, you are getting results without goals – whenever something works, thats the way to do it.
      by the way, how are you doing on the outbursts?
      thank you for commenting, always


      • rammkatze says:

        Yeah, Doug, that’s pretty much my “trick”: I cut the ” trigger-foods” that make me think “oh to hell with it all”. And I actually bought a scale a couple of months ago. As for the outbursts, they were so rare that I can’t be sure it’s my doing. Last time I felt close to one, it helped to breathe fresh air at the Window. Gotta keep that in mind: it’s so stuffy at work, no one is going to dare say something if I run outside. Thanks for the support!

        Liked by 1 person

        • ram- you’re welcome. glad when i can help.
          sounds like you’ve got the outbursts down. you can tell when about to, so go to the window. if necessary, run outside. good strategy!
          and realizing there were trigger foods – great!
          as always,thank you for commenting


  5. Ruth says:

    This is beautiful.
    I agree that it is very important to break insurmountable tasks down into small, manageable steps. It is very hard for me to do this.

    Also, it is a great epiphany to realize that organization is not a goal but a journey,
    and this truth is extremely helpful,
    because if you have ever gotten organized,
    you know that you don’t stay organized unless you continue on the journey.
    Life is chaos, and to live successfully is to overcome the chaos to whatever extent enables you to reach your goals. The chaos never goes away; you either continue to battle it, or you give up. ADD, I think, makes fighting the battle harder, but the principle is true for all.

    Liked by 1 person

    • ruth good thinking. and chaos it is, good point.
      do you understand how it is hard to break into small steps?
      thank you for commenting


      • Ruth says:

        No. I don’t understand how it is hard to break things into small steps. I just see things as big problems, very gestalt. I like the sentence I’ve read here recently though: “At least I could do this.” That is helpful.

        Liked by 1 person

        • ruth- i probably dont understand. but –

          for a project – if i do this project, what is the first thing i would need to do? and the next? and the next?
          ex – i need to do my taxes. Ugh! impossible. But, I can try to find my cancelled checks (probably need my wife to help tho). then i can sort them. then i can find receipts for donations. then — etc etc

          for a problem — ex i cant find anything!
          that’s an impossible problem. but i can pick a specific thing – thats the equivalent of small steps.
          ex i always lose my keys. then i can make a strategy for that. once thats a habit, then i could work on – i can never find my cancelled checks, or, i can never remember where i parked my car, etc.
          does any of this apply to what youre talking about?
          thank you for commenting


  6. Amanda says:

    This really puts things into perspective for me. I spend a LOT of time planning, have went through several planners trying to find the “perfect” one (which I think I have finally found the closest thing to it) and when I read this post, I feel a relief when looking at being organized as a process or a journey, rather than an end result. Thanks!


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