This question was asked by several participants in my latest program on "Embracing the Power of Good Enough". It really got me thinking.... This question gets to the very heart of life! It sure is relevant to my life right now. Maybe yours too?
I've been rethinking a lot of my needs and wants, lately. Like this blog, for example.
- How do I want to express myself with it?
- What purpose do I want it to serve for me and my tribe?
- How do I want to share my point of view? In small, realtime chunks like Twitter? or with well thought out inspirational and educational articles? Do I want to be more transparent and share my thought processes about my work and about my own life with ADHD and a hyperactive creative brain?
One thing for sure, I want to reflect on and write more about all aspects of life with ADD. In my coaching, I help people with all areas of life...so why aren't I talking about all of them on this blog?
I want to talk about the meta-cognitive skills that truly empower us to live more effectively with ADD, not just the technical skills of organizing.
Meta-cognitive skills like Decision Making, Filtering, Establishing Criteria, Prioritizing, Planning, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Goal setting, do not come naturally to creatives and ADHDers who prefer to open up possibilities,generate ideas, and keep options open.
( Metacognitive Skills = The ability to reflect and assess the quality and process of one's own thinking, beliefs and understandings.)
Skills such as Inner dialogue, listening, Motivating Ourselves, Valuing ourselves and embracing our imperfections and well as our strengths also do NOT come naturally to us. We have to learn them from the ground up.
So.this blog is going to shift again. I'm getting ready to share a lot more...and I hope you are ready to go on this new phase of the journey with me!
I'm not going to post stuff that I think can found all over the web...I'm going to post stuff that I don't hear people talking about very much. Or, I might just start pulling out some "quotes" from conventional tips I find around the web and post how and why they do NOT apply to people with ADHD or how they might actually be biased against people with ADHD without even realizing it!
I'm not interested in writing "tips" anymore. 5 ways to do this, 6 secrets to that... UGH. I'm so tired of it. It doesn't inspire me...so I think that's why my blog has been rather quiet. If I'm not inspired, why would you be?
I'm also rethinking my whole business and my role in it. I'm working on hiring a Business Manager so that I can truly devote 80 - 90 % of my time to coaching, writing and creating while someone else handles the technology and business aspects.
So how do I know what I want? One way I know is by how I'm feeling. Another is to listen to my own complaints and excuses to figure out what I'm really frustrated about and use them as a stepping stone to get to what I DO want. E.g. If I don't want that, why? what is it I really want instead? And sometimes, I have to look at my wants and expectations to see if they are realistic...or need adjustment.
If I want to hire a business manager tomorrow...well, that's too bad. It just ain't gonna happen. I have to allow time to become ready to welcome the new Bus. Mgr. into my life. "Become ready" means I have to organize and rethink everything I do through the lens of "what if someone else could be doing this for me? What would that take?
What do I want? I want to stop saying:
"I can't do that project, or finish that book, or that audio program because I'm too busy trying to keep up with email, setting up autoresponders for classes, sending out reminders, fulfilling orders for products" etc. Why? Because I don't have a system for delegating these jobs to someone else.
But I can't just STOP saying that....I have to do something differently. I have to replace those thoughts with something positive AND specific. Like "How can I create a system for delegating? Who would be the right person to help me do that?"
I WANT to be INSPIRED...to have time to really think, reflect, and express - whether writing or teaching. I want to be able to put on more classes and coaching groups. I want to MAKE the time to do it by giving over the actual implementation to someone else.
So, for a while...I'm going to experiment with using this blog to inspire myself to make this happen and hopefully inspire you too. I'm going to use it as more of a journal of how my thinking is evolving...what I'm learning...what I'm clarifying for myself.
With that intention and inspiration in mind, here are just a few of the "bullet points" I'm incubating in preparation for the final session of the Getting Unstuck coaching program on June 17. It's been a year and a half and I have learned and grown so much along with the members of the program. I'm going to keep the community of 70+ people going for free for now...but I'm working on a sustainable way to keep the connection, healing, learning, safety, sharing, love and support going. Once I have a Business Manager on board...there will be many new possibilities for me...and my tribe...to learn and grow together.
So here are more of my thoughts on "How do I know what I want?"
- First, this is a much better than the all too common complaints "But I don't know what I want" or "But what if I don't know what I want?" The trouble with those statements / complaints is they tend to cause people to give up in frustration and overwhelm.
- The question "How do I know what I want?" is a great one because at least now your brain is inspired to start thinking about ways to figure out what you want!
- The question can also be very overwhelming though. Why? Because it's very broad. It's not quantified or contained in any way. There are so many ways to answer it that we freeze up...it makes our brains explode or maybe even implode : )
- So what's the first step to dealing with anything overwhelming like that? Start narrowing the question itself. When? where? in what part of life? for whom? from whom? emotionally? physically? materially? Then keep narrowing it down till you get to question you CAN answer : )
- Another thought....Keep in mind that what you want or need varies hourly...our whole lives are a journey of noticing and assessing what we want / need now vs tomorrow vs. next week or month, etc. Where we have trouble prioritizing is in deciding which need is more important at any given time. This hour you may NEED to eat...so your question might be: How do I know what I want to eat? Next you may be tired and need rest...your question might be "How do I know what kind of "rest" I need right now? a nap? a change of scenery? a walk? Still not easy to answer for some of us, but much more doable.
- Even more challenging, how do I know if what I want or need right now is just as important as what others need? How do I balance my wants / needs with those of others?
- Because we have to make SOOO many decisions like this every day....the more we can automate "templates" or guidelines for making wise choices the more we can lower our stress. To make templates for decision making we need "criteria". Like "Even though I love to research every option, sometimes I need to limit my number of choices, without sacrificing my need for adventure, so that I make sure I have time for ALL my needs...not just the needs of the moment." : )
IThanks so much to my clients, blog readers, subscribers and fellow learners who continually inspire me to reflect on what I know and put it to good use helping others navigate the challenges and adventures of life with ADHD! : )