It is interesting to me how we hear so much about New Year’s resolutions the first week of the year and I haven’t heard anyone talking about them in the last couple weeks of the month.
I’ll be honest, I don’t like New Year’s resolutions. They are often not realistic, do not have solid plans behind them and are usually not what I would call “ADHD-friendly”. I often hear people asking, “What resolutions are you making this year”? This can easily lead to an impulsive response of, “I’m going to lose weight”, “I’m going to focus more” or “I’m going to finally manage time better this year”. Resolutions tend to be susceptible to this impulsivity, general and filled with obligation to fix what is wrong with ourselves.
Will you consider a goal instead?
I’m writing about this now because I am hopeful that you have forgotten your resolutions… Hopeful that you will open to considering the idea of setting ONE meaningful goal for yourself. Having a meaningful goal to focus your attention can help you overcome the problems often associate with resolutions.
To start, brainstorm the ADHD challenges where you would like to make some improvements this year. Review your list and decide what is the biggest priority for you. Make this priority your focus for the meaningful goal you are going to set. I know, it will be difficult to pick just one, but this is really important. Having one goal where you focus your energy will help you in achieving that goal. (I also think it will help you improve in other areas, but more on that another day!)
Set a SMART Goal
After selecting your area of focus, it is time to set a SMART goal. To make your goal SMART, you can answer the following questions for yourself:
- How can I make the goal as Specific as possible?
- How will I Measure this goal? (If it is not easily measured, develop your own rating scale.)
- What are my chances of Attaining this goal? How can I revise the goal to make it more Attainable?
- How is this goal Relevant to my personal and/or professional life?
- What is the Timing or deadline associate with this goal?
When your goal is SMART, you can then develop a useful action plan and monitor your success until you achieve the goal according to the timing you have established.
What do you think, do resolutions work for individuals with ADHD and ADD?