“Oops! I forgot.” How many times do you say that to yourself? If you have AD/HD, plenty, I bet. In fact, one of the diagnostic criteria for AD/HD is forgetfulness.
Still, forgetting to do things we have told ourselves need to be done can lead to feelings of frustration and to lack of accomplishment. And forgetting to do things we have promised others we’ll do can lead to being perceived as unreliable in any relationship, and to strain in close relationships.
Who needs any of that?
Helpful approaches to remembering what we need to be doing range from the simple to the more technological:
-hanging up reminder signs or notes on the fridge, mirror, and/or door
-carrying a “to do “ list on an index card in one’s pocket
-scheduling routine times to take care of various types of business
-using a planner
-using timers and alarms (including cell phone alarms) to jog us into remembering something we might forget otherwise
But what if we need a more noticeable reminder of something that is important to do but not on our usual radar screen? Say, we need a reminder to purchase mom a birthday card, or a reminder to turn in that job application by Friday. Hanging a reminder note on the bathroom mirror or the front door can be a helpful strategy. But, if that’s not enough, here are a few handy technological tools that can also be used to jog the memory:
-Upgrading to a computerized calendar such as Microsoft Outlook, with an integrated task-manager can make planning and remembering easier. It’s all in front of you on the computer screen or your daily print-out. (You can try Outlook with your browser without even having to download it.)
-Working with a specialized product such as SKOACH, an integrated calendar and time-management program designed by an expert in AD/HD, serves a similar function but is preferred by some. (A free 14 day trial makes it easy to explore this software.)
– You’ve used sticky notes before, right? I know I’ve even stuck them on my computer as a reminder, only to have them fall off unnoticed. Well, try electronic sticky notes – they can’t come unstuck so easily! Remove them only when you’ve completed your task. Several free versions are available on the web.
– Do you check your email daily (or more often)? Would an email reminder be just the nudge you need? ReQuall is a nifty program you can use to send yourself email reminders. It also works with voice mail, instant messaging, or texting. Best of all, you can easily try it out because the standard version is free!
– Not in one place much of the time? ReQuall (above) can be used with voice mail or texting. But, for a simpler approach, how about a vibrating watch? Lots of varieties are available.
Isn’t technology amazing?
We all need to have ways to remind ourselves of important “to do” items. What techniques have you tried? What works well for you?