How to Focus on One Project at a Time

Empty Desk

For some with ADHD, one of the many advantages can be... dreaming big!  They have great ideas and so much they want to do and try.  But because these ideas do not come into their mind in an orderly fashion, the ideas get scattered.  Many ideas get forgotten and there is a lack of follow through. I have talked about multi-tasking in the past in regards to organizing and it is not recommended.  If you want to see faster progress, you want to do one space at a time.  The same goes with projects and ideas.  It doesn't matter if the projects and ideas are home or work related.  It could be anything from remodeling a room to making a deadline at work. The process of doing one project at a time still stands.  So to work on one project at a time takes focus.

Focus. Not an easy task. Distractions happen and well let's face it, if the project is boring then we will have even less desire to complete it.  However, at the same time without focus, the project continues to be incomplete.  Which is frustrating and why you are reading this blog!

Here are a few tips on how to focus in on your projects: 

1) Be clear on what needs to be done - When you are working on a project especially a large one, write down all of the steps needed to complete it.  Prioritize the list and have this with you every time you are working on the project.  This is your plan or roadmap to get the project completed.  The breakdown of the project will help you feel less overwhelmed.  You now clearly know what needs to be done.

2) Set a time limit - Decide how much time is necessary to put into your project.  Maybe it's a few minutes a day or  just an hour a week.  Whatever it is, put it on your calendar and be committed to that time.  This is where you are focusing on just this one project, nothing else. Setting a timer can be a great tool to use to help you stay on task.

3) Resist the distractions - As much as you possibly can, turn off the distractions.  For some it may be the phone ringing or email.  I have had some clients who have actually left their offices and worked somewhere else where they found to have fewer distractions.

4) Tell someone - Accountability is a great motivator to get things done.  Tell someone what you are working on and have them check in on you once a week. You may already have this built in if the project is work related, you don't want to let down your boss.  But if you don't, I highly suggest it.  If your project is organize your garage this summer, tell your neighbor about it.  It works!

5) Reward yourself - This is important because too often people do not recognize their own accomplishments, we are our worst critics.  When you have finished a project, celebrate!  You have succeeded.  Acknowledge this and don't pass it by.  Do something nice for yourself, you deserve it!  The great thing about success is once you have felt it, you want to keep doing it.

The reality is we all have more than one project to work on.  So setting aside specific time for each specific project is your best bet to completion.  However, there is a fine balance, you still can't have too many projects or you won't have enough time to really focus on each one. Therefore, nothing gets done.  It's important to understand your top priorities and how they align with your values.

The ultimate goal is to feel the accomplishment of follow through and finishing what you started!

Until Next Time...

Take Care,