As I mentioned in my last post, goal setting can be a real challenge for those with ADHD. As much as it may be something that we want to do and see through, this is not something that is easy or comes naturally for us. It can be a real challenge.
In this first of three posts about goal setting, I want to discuss why ADHDers may struggle with this. There are definitely reasons behind it. This is a good place to start, when discussing goal setting for those ADHD. If we understand why we fail and have a hard time with this, it can help make the rest a little easier.
#1: Unclear Why.
A lot of times, we may set goals because we feel as though we should be doing it, or because it’s something that others expect of us. When we do, we’re just making it harder on ourselves.
For those with ADHD, we need something that truly is interesting to us. Better to take time and figure what we really want and what’s really important and interesting to us rather than focus on all the things that others expect from us and what we feel we ‘should’ be doing.
Focus on your why.
#2: Expectations – Unrealistic
ADHDers sometimes struggle with perfection or the whole all or nothing. We focus on whether we went to the gym everyday, or whether we’re doing it as well as the other moms, just to name a few. We set our standards for ourselves to high. Kind of easy to see how this may not help.
Instead of focusing on perfection or doing everything now, we should be focusing on the progress we’ve made.
#3: Stopping at step one
ADHDers may have the habit of setting the goal and then end there. We tend to forget about breaking down the goal into smaller goals or doing baby steps. It’s easy for us to see the end result, but not necessarily everything that comes in between.
It can be a challenge, as this can sometimes require planning. Planning is an executive function, which are things that we really struggle with. So, this is definitely part of why I think we struggle with goals.
At the end of the day, goal setting can be difficult for ADHDers and there are reasons why it’s hard for us. However, as difficult as it can be at times, it is possible for ADHDers to set some goals and be able to achieve them. It takes time to figure why and how to get there. Ways that work for us.
Have you heard of S.M.A.R.T. goals? I learned about that in college and it kind helped me.
Yes I have. It’s something I am trying to work on and apply.