ADHD and Productivity – 6 Influencers

A person writes a note in a paper planner

In my conversations with professionals with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, they often want to know; “How can I organize my day / schedule so I can feel productive?” 

When looking for that answer, they often focus on sticking to a to-do list and prioritizing based on importance, urgent, non urgent tasks and so on. 

They have read many books on the art of getting things done, watched a lot of YouTube videos on how to be productive… the list of research is endless and certainly there is no shortage of “How to be productive tools”.    

One big element they have missed along the way, is looking at the bigger picture of what is influencing their overall stress level and draining their energy in getting things done. 

I've had days where I finish meme

Stress and ADHD

We can agree that we work better when the productivity solutions are in front of us. We also know that working under stress significantly reduces our productivity level. 

When an ADHD brain and stress are combined, oftentimes adults with ADHD have challenges in regulating and managing their emotions. This makes it hard for them to tap into their rational part of their brain to come up with solutions to reduce stress.

They feel stuck and will often hold back from asking for help. They will continue to operate in this viscous circle until they hit a tipping point.

We all know that when we are calm, relaxed, and high energy, we work with 100% of our potential.  In fact, we can go as far as being hyper focused and super productive when it comes to tasks that are exciting and of interest to us. 

So, what is the missing link when it comes to being productive in all aspects of our day to day life at work?

6 Influencers That Impact Your ADHD

Any time that you are not performing to the best of your ability, something is blocking your energy and causing stress.  Most likely it could be one or more of these 6 influencers *: Spiritual, Mental, Emotional, Physical, Social, or Environmental factor which may be holding you back.

In order to get the most of your day, first evaluate your overall satisfaction level in each of these 6 influencers:

  1. Spiritual – Occurs when you are not aligned to your core values and beliefs, or the values of the organization that you work for.
  1. Mental – You are spreading yourself too thinly by taking on too many tasks, operating in default mode and feeling drained mentally.
  1. Emotional – This occurs when your needs are not being met, you have not created healthy boundaries, and you have been people pleasing more than you care to mention.
  1. Physical – Occurs when your body is not functioning at its optimal, you are sick more often, exercise is not in your daily routine, frequent visits to the doctor.
  1. Social – You don’t have a support network to rely on, and specially these days social connection is missing.
  1. Environment – Your office space is cluttered, or not even inviting enough to have the motivation to get work done.

Once you have identified which of these areas is getting a low score make the necessary changes to increase satisfaction in that area.

It is important to note that once all these 6 influencers are addressed and rated highly, you will have the best chance at getting things done with ease and motivation.

*I have adapted the concept of 6 influencers from my coach training program at the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPec) and incorporated my studies and research on ADHD, copyright rules apply.

About the Author

Cathy Rashidian, CPC is an Executive Coach, specializing in adult ADHD and the Host of the podcast show “Proudly ADHD at work and in business”


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