During a recent coaching call the question was asked, “why is it that ADHD adults resist ‘routine and structure’? She explained that structure “feels like a ‘straight jacket”. She also asked if it as common for adults with ADHD to enjoy the ‘novelty’ of doing things differently vs feeling constricted by structure?
I explained that it was common for adults with ADHD to enjoy the novelty and the stimulation that comes with doing things differently.
It’s true that many adults with ADHD perceive routine & structure as a “narrow realm of appropriateness” that is too tight and constructive. You may have shared this experience during childhood when your teacher or parent insisted that you perform a task or assignment in a very prescribed manner. Of course, many ADD children are skilled at finding alternate means of arriving at the correct solution. Unfortunately, the teacher most likely did not accept your solution and insisted that you complete the math problem using only her prescribed instructions.
Fortunately, it is not necessary that routine & structure be experienced as a ‘straight jacket’. In fact, IT IS possible to create a structure that can be guiding without feeling (overly) constrictive. The good news is that YOU get to design the structure that works for you. You also have the RIGHT to alter it or tweak it so that your structure works well for you.
Think of your structure as a recipe. Let’s say you have a favorite family recipe for “homemade chili”. Your recipe will include a list the ingredients, list portions and cooking directions. Don’t you know that before you even begin preparation of your chili you already have a sense of confidence that your chili will turn out absolutely delicious. Can’t you already feel your taste buds activating in anticipation of tasting your delicious chili?
Routine & structure is no different than what I refer to as a recipe for success. I use this term in my coaching because I frequently coach my clients to design a recipe for success to create the various results they desire to achieve in their day and in their life.
“Structure is no more than a recipe, a proven path that guides you towards creating your reliable results.”
~Coach Rudy Rodriguez, Asheville, NC
TeleSeminar Topic: Recipe for Success
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