If you do have ADHD, you will have to recognize that it is a chronic condition, and you will need to find ways to compensate for the deficits that the condition presents. And as you have already learned the strategies that may be effective at one time can become less effective at other times.
You have already identified strategies that are no longer working for you. So now, you take that information and adjust your approach. Something as simple as setting a timer for a reasonable amount of time and doing focused work, alternating with rewarding yourself with a period of time for procrastination or whatever, then returning to focused work, etc. might be helpful. You are going to have to make lists and plan out when you are going to do things, and do them. You seem to like the pressure of time running out–which is why staying up late and cramming everything into an hour may have worked for you in the past. You may need to find ways to artificially create time running out.
My family has tried to help me by buying planners, but for whatever reason I just don’t like using them. And when I do write stuff in them, I forget to check them. So I have literally 4 empty planners in my room. @NorthernMom61 I try to plan out my time, but I’m HORRIBLE at budgeting my time, like today I told myself I would study calculus until dinnertime and biology until 10 and then go to sleep, but so far I haven’t studied calculus or biology and it’s 9. I don’t really know how it happens but it just does. And now I have two midterms tomorrow and I’m probably going to do absolutely horrid on them, even though I really needed good grades on them
I have to find things that work for me, but it seems like I just suck at everything so I can’t find anything that works
The thing is that you have to keep trying, it is a process, ongoing and always needing to be adjusted. Trying something for a day or two, or even a week or two isn’t enough time to determine if something works or not. You have to make these strategies a habit. It is very very hard, and it is very very hard for people who aren’t you to understand how hard it is for you because from the outside you look perfectly capable and normal.
Get out one of those planners and try using it again, make realistic timelines and stick to them. It is going to be painful at first and the learning curve of doing it consistently is going to be very steep. Pick one or two strategies and force yourself to do them and little by little before you know it you might see some improvement. Even if you get diagnosed and even if you try medication and it helps, you are still going to have to implement these strategies to help yourself if you want to break this cycle. And it is hard, and it is going to hurt, but if you want things to change then that’s what it is going to take.
And obviously you don’t “suck at everything,” that kind of thinking isn’t helpful either. Developing a mindset that you have to power to make things better for yourself will not only help you with this situation, but many things in life.
It’s just so hard and it just feels like I can’t do it. Maybe it’s senioritis talking. I’m just really, really upset right now that I have 4 midterms in the next two days and I don’t know anything about any of the subjects
No but I feel like I would just ignore it, lol. That’s a good suggestion though I’ll give it a try.
I feel like I’m way too easy on myself like I let myself get away with things that I shouldn’t allow, like not studying and stuff, but then sometimes I feel like I’m hard on myself because I get so angry and upset over it. I’m super weird I guess.
Well, it seems like you are showing that you need a therapist/coach who gives you strategy assignments then follows up on your compliance. You might even ask your parents to help you with this.
It is hard. When people decide they are at a point of really working to improve their lives (diet, exercise, quitting smoking, giving up alcohol, complying to treatments, etc) , they have to dig deep and make that commitment. If you want to help yourself, you have to do this too. You have to throw away the excuses. At this moment whether it is ADHD or senioritis or too much chocolate or whatever else you can think of doesn’t matter. The approaches suggested here might not help you today with the four tests you have tomorrow, but from tomorrow on you can decide to do things differently.
OP, I have seen this in one of my Ds (including trying every organization/binder system going- not one of which worked!).
Timers do seem to help, getting out of high school helped A LOT, maturing helped, as did breaking work down into specific modules, taking regular (but very short) breaks, and more.
One that helped a bit in high school (although it took effort on both sides to not have things get cranky): before starting homework, my D would talk through with me what work she had, what was necessary to get it done, what parts of the work were likely to be difficult or slow and what ‘milestones’/steps/tasks she could break it down into. We’d talk it through and set break points. Talking it out helped her organize her thoughts in a different way.
And, you might laugh at this, but she swears it got her through senior year: she mostly studied in her room, and when she took a study break (which she did every 20-30 minutes), she turned on music and danced for 5 minutes, then went back to work. Try it- nobody’s watching
I feel you soooo much. Like I got a 35 on the ACT and I’m in the top 10% of my class, and I have the exact same problems as you do. I literally don’t start homework until like 1 AM and even then I’m constantly taking breaks because I NEED to walk around. I honestly can’t study. I’ve never truly studied for anything in my class. People think I’m bragging, but I honestly can’t study. I can’t sit down and read my notes for hours like other people I know, and I’m constantly writing stories in class or drawing pictures. I truly wish I knew what to do.
Also–I think I recognize your username from the Penn thread?
My son, who I ended up homeschooling because of his ADHD, does something similiar. We have a trampoline on our yard and he takes constant breaks to jump. He must jump for about 2 hours a day total when the time is added up.
@Center no I totally know I’m acting like a pain in the butt lol. Probly cause I’m anonymous and yall can’t judge me I’m sorry if I sound like I’m making excuses because I actually do try things so it’s not like I’m making excuses to not try, it’s more like I’m trying to come up with reasons that things aren’t working. I definitely think the timers might help and I’m going to give those a try. I already have a therapist.
That’s what ADHD/ADD is. It’s a disability. It controls your brain.
But there are tools to help you take control.
A timer that beeps helps.
Posting things around and standing up while you read and pace, helps. Try those to start.
@anon9362 Wow - just read all this. People gave you really good advice. I can’t understand why your mom would be mad - maybe she just can’t relate or understand. But only you know what you are feeling inside- and if you feel that something is wrong, you are probably right. Get tested (make sure it’s by a reputable person) and see what the results indicate. Of course, I don’t know you, but I would recommend a small/medium sized school where they have really good support services, with smaller classes and lots of faculty-student interaction. Muhlenberg is great for that (deadline 2/15) and many other colleges are too. Of course, some of the larger colleges also have strong support services, but my personal preference would be a smaller, more intimate setting.
What schools did you apply to? There are schools that have good support services if you submit documentation of your diagnosed disability. Not quite sure what you mean by the doctor giving you an “informal test” because typically the diagnosis is made utilizing a combination of getting a comprehensive history, behavior rating questionairres completed by you, your parent and a teacher, and an assessment of your sustained attention/concentration. freedom from distractability, organization and a to rule out other possible causes of underlying attention issues.