You’re Not ADD
I get it. ADD is a real disorder and a lot of people have it. I know. I’m not talking about them. I’m talking about the people who use ADD their reason for doing nothing.
Instead of taking one or two tasks from start to completion and taking pride in doing it, they bounce around with 7 (or 70) different “amazing” ideas and never do any of them.
They end up giving into their lizard brain and having 5 half-finished projects and nothing to show for it.
Of course not everything you do in life will be an amazing adrenaline rush that will blow your mind, but that doesn’t mean at least some of it can. And, it doesn’t mean that you have to subject yourself to mind-numbing work that you can’t stand and have to distract yourself in order to “do it.”
If Everyone Is ADD…
If everyone is special, then no one is. – Ayn Rand, The Incredibles
If we’re all special, then no one is. If everyone claims ADD, then I would argue that no one really has a disorder (i.e. an irregularity). I think it’s called being easily distracted and it’s a human condition, not a disorder.
I talk to a lot of people every day and it’s amazing how many people claim ADD. Because it’s considered a “disorder”, the fact that they can’t concentrate isn’t their fault and they’re officially free of responsibility for their actions (or inability to take action).
Let’s face it, unless you’ve been officially diagnosed, you’re probably not ADD. You’re easily distracted. You’re easily distracted because you’re bored. You’re bored because you don’t truly care about the projects or work that you’re doing.
But I have so many ideas!
I have a hundreds and thousands of ideas. I’ve got a notepad full of things I want to do, business ideas I want to start, pieces I want to write, and places I want to go (and you thought that the impossible list was long). If I tried to focus on them all at once, my mind might explode and I wouldn’t actually do any of them. Ideas are great, but they’re just ideas on a piece of paper until you actually do something with them.
Find a project. Start a list. Do something you’re passionate about. Do something you interested in. Do something you care about.
Figuring It All Out
Identifying problems is easy. People do it all the time. It’s called complaining. It’s harder to actually solve those problems. So how do you figure out how to turn those 1000s of ideas into actual actions?
Here’s 7 questions to ask yourself to help you narrow your focus and start figuring it all out:
- Which one am I most excited about?
- Why am I excited about that one specifically?
- Which one is the most important to me?
- Which one has the highest percentage of being successful?
- Which one will help the most people?
- Which ones will take some planning to accomplish?
- Which one can I start on TODAY?
Once you ask yourself those questions, start prioritizing the projects you actually want to do, preferably start with the ones you can start on TODAY. Don’t be too tied to the projects either. If something doesn’t work out like you expected, move on to the next thing on your list.
This doesn’t mean you can’t for things in the future while doing stuff today, but your focus is on finishing one thing and planning for another; not planning & finishing for 40 things all at one time. So focus on the work in front of you, but more importantly, make sure the work in front of you is work you actually care about.