Have ADD or ADHD and Need Help Managing Your Time?
Since I work with, and coach a number of people with ADD and ADHD who have trouble managing their time, I decided to try and find a tool that can help them manage their time better.
One of the challenges of people with ADD and ADHD is their difficulty in predicting how much time it takes to complete specific tasks. For example, many people describe to me that they simply get on the computer thinking they are going to do a quick, simple task, or look up information for a few minutes- only to realize that an hour, two, or more has gone by. This can cause them to miss deadlines, waste time they feel they should be working, or be late for appointments.
The ADHD Brain and Attention
There are structural differences in the brain of those with ADHD that result in low levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is active in the brain’s frontal lobes. It is believed that these low levels of dopamine make it hard to “shift gears” from fun activities to boring and necessary tasks.
As a result, children and adults with ADHD usually struggle to focus on certain types of tasks related to attention. They struggle with tasks they find boring, as well as those that do not deliver instant feedback and reward, and oftentimes hyperfocusing. Is a way to compensate.
Although it is wrongly believed that all people with ADD or ADHD cannot sustain attention for long periods of time. Some people with ADHD can sustain their attention for very long periods of time, oftentimes to the exclusion of everything else, if they find something interesting. This hyperfocusing helps them to get things done, however, the downside is they lose track of time. People with ADHD have challenges with an “inconsistency” of attention, or a “disregulation” of attention, rather than a “deficit” of attention- so “attention deficit” is really a misnomer.
A Tool for Productivity
Many web browsers come loaded with features, and there are many free downloadable “extensions” that can give your browser some useful tools to manage your time, both for your personal life as well as in your business.
StayFocusd is a productivity extension for Google Chrome that helps you stay focused. It limits the amount of time that you can spend on time-wasting websites. Once your allotted time has been used up, the sites you have set up to be blocked will be inaccessible for the rest of the day.
StayFocusd is highly configurable, allowing you to block or allow entire websites, specific pages, specific subdomains, specific paths, and even specific in-page content (videos, games, images, forms, etc). You can even set which days or times of day to be allowed or blocked.
You can download the StayFocusd extension here