Adding Structure

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Like most people with ADHD, I do better in a structured environment. And while I have worked outside of the home, most of my married “mom” years have been spent at home. Home – where there is little structure unless you create it (and enforce it).

I’ve been reading a lot of “makeover” kinds of books lately. Not hair and makeup makeovers; more like life makeovers. Gee that’s not too ambitious is it?

So today is Day One for me in my own personal 12 week makeover. I am making changes in self care, homekeeping, business and finance. And in order to make those changes and keep moving forward, I need structure.

Most days I feel as though I sort of sleep walk through them. The day goes by and I didn’t get a lot done. What do I do with my time?

Well, I’ve been putting a lot of the blame on my family. They take all my time. I have to do so much for them, I just don’t have any left.

Well, yesterday that myth got busted.

I sat down and created a chart. I listed each day of the week and ran a time line down the side. I started with the time I get up and ended with my bedtime.

Then I blocked off all the times that I am doing something for my family. Dinner every evening, of course, but also times when I’m picking someone up or running an errand for someone. I only plugged in the things that happen on a regular weekly basis, not things like the odd doctor’s appointment.

Guess what? There was all of this white space all around those family obligations. Turns out, I’m wasting my own time, not spending it on others.

So I am adding some structure to my life.

There are certain things that I have to do every day (or most days), like make dinner, do some laundry, and write for this blog. Before, they happened when I felt like it. Not enough structure to make sure that they got done.

Now, they have a time frame. I’m not setting appointments for myself, but I am blocking off time for specific things. A to do list isn’t nearly as effective as a list with times assigned.

This is an experiment for me in adding structure to my life. I’m sure it will need adjusting and fine tuning as the weeks progress. I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

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Lacy Estelle

Lacy Estelle is the writer of and the Podcast host for An ADD Woman.

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2 Responses

  1. Good for you! I can’t wait to hear about your progress. I’ve done something similar. I’ve talked to my husband and we’re going to spring clean like we’ve never done before in the house. This includes making our guest room/computer room more workable and organized. I’m also going to start exercising. We’ve at least made the list of things to do, next is to put them on the calendar. I find that once I have it on the calendar, it’s in stone and I *do* it. I commend you for adding more structure to your days!

  2. Thanks for your comments!

    Spring cleaning is definitely on my list too. I really feel it’s needed after the house has been shut up for so long.

    I suspect that I am not as diligent as you in following through on things, but I definitely feel that scheduling things rather than just making them a “to do” has helped a lot.