The ADD ADHD Trap of Expectations — ADD Tip O the Day 623

What Can I Expect?

With ADD ADHD we have so many things we’re interested in and it’s hard to say no to any of them.  It’s hard to say no to ourselves.

My daily routine includes brushing my teeth, quiet time, and exercise.  I was missing the quiet time occasionally but then my spiritual adviser told me it was “non-negotiable.” I’ve used “non-negotiable” as my motto ever since and rarely miss a day.

I actually can’t exercise every day either, but by having that as a goal I get in at least 4 times a week.

I had a goal of doing some guitar, Spanish, book marketing and writing every day.  At bedtime I would record in my notebook – E,G,Sp,Mkt,Wrt  – or whichever ones I had gotten done.

It’s taken me several years to realize that this is absolutely impossible.  My expectations were just unrealistic.


With ADD ADHD we not only want to do everything, we also expect way too much of ourselves.


Goals need to be reasonable and achievable.  Otherwise we just set ourselves up for frustration and demoralization.

It works better to set goals too low rather than too high.  Then we can feel good about achieving them and maybe we can go on and do more –     “Wow! I not only got it done but I exceeded my goal!”

Instead of trying to do each one of those every day (guitar, Spanish, book marketing, and writing) I’m  scheduling one of them each day and trying to be sure that that one gets done at least.

Irrelevant Note:

I titled this “expectations” because that’s really the focus of it and I’ve written a lot on goals recently.


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Multitasking – one of the ADD ADHD gifts?

A whole bunch of other posts on goals (or expectations).  Do you really expect to check them all out?


Can we use goals?

goals and Self Abuse

goals and overdoing

Goals #2

Goals #3

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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5 Responses to The ADD ADHD Trap of Expectations — ADD Tip O the Day 623

  1. D K Powell says:

    Ugh…this is the story of my life!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not good at multi-tasking either UNLESS the tasks are related. I can do four cooking tasks at the same time but I can’t cook and do laundry or cleaning.

    I try to do too much also and think I can do it all.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. rammkatze says:

    Good post! I consider myself as someone who CAN’T multitask, though. For me, Multitasking is the ability to perform several tasks at once. Me, I can start a thousand tasks at once, I just can’t keep with more than one. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • ram – good point. i dont think multitasking has really been defined. i play music while i write this. i can talk on the phone and check my e mails at the same time.
      thank you for commenting.


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