Actually, the motto of the Boy Scouts is: Be Prepared, but I think always being prepared is better.
I suppose it’s a good idea for everyone to be prepared, but for those of us with ADHD, it’s more of a must.
And you must be wondering: prepared for what?
Well, for life.
Not all of it, of course, because no one can be prepared for everything.
(When I started looking for resources for this post, it seems “being prepared” means for a disaster of some sort. Zombie Apocalypse was actually a choice. I just mean day to day stuff.)
Being prepared for daily life – that’s something we can do.
Preparing for Daily Life
Think about your life for a minute.
You most likely do the same things most days; we all seem to have a routine of one kind or another.
So let’s break it down to the very basics, just to get an idea of what I mean by being ready for anything.
We all eat. Usually a couple of meals a day and maybe some snacks.
Where you eat them is dependent on the day and your schedule, but you know you’re going to eat.
Therefore, being prepared in this case would be making sure that there was food on hand.
You go to the grocery store probably once a week and do the shopping.
But how do you do the shopping?
Have you taken the time to plan your meals?
Do you have a list?
Will what you buy get you through the week, or will there be more trips to the store?
And it’s not just food.
When you think of your daily life in the context of always being prepared, it can seem overwhelming.
Being Ready for Anything
Starting your day probably doesn’t begin with breakfast.
You wake up, shower, get dressed.
Did you have enough soap, shampoo, and toothpaste? A clean towel?
What about clean clothes?
Gas in the car?
A plan for the day?
It’s starting to sound as though you’re preparing for a long trip instead of just another day, isn’t it?
But that’s the reality of it.
A simple day, to be a simple day, means you have prepared for it ahead of time.
You shopped and stocked up, you did the laundry, you made some plans, and checked to make sure you had what you needed.
Life is a lot easier when you’re prepared.
So How Do You Plan Ahead?
Planning ahead is a great idea. It makes life so much easier.
But those of us with ADHD, while we’re always thinking ahead, are not always so good at being prepared for what may come.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t become a Boy Scout wanna-be. You just have to learn.
Time to make a list.
Start with the things that you are never ready for, or the things that usually catch you off guard.
If you’re running out of clean socks or clothes or towels too soon, figure it out:
- Are you not doing laundry frequently enough or
- Do you need more socks, clothes, or towels? Seriously. I doubt you need more clothes, but count your towels and anything else you run out of too quickly. Maybe you do need more.
If you’re scrambling for something for lunch or dinner by the end of the week, actually plan for those lunches and dinners ahead of time and buy the food. (I always plan our dinners, but wing it on breakfast and lunch. I admit, it’s not a good habit, because I’m always scrambling for something for lunch mid week.)
If you drive to pretty much the same places each week, figure out how long a tank of gas lasts, so you’re not surprised when it’s suddenly on empty.
You’re not going to come up with a list and solutions in one sitting, but if you make this a project and keep a running list on hand, you can eventually fix this and make your life a lot easier.
And earn your always prepared badge while you’re at it.
Here are a few ideas to get you started: