Many people affected by ADHD and/or overwhelm often look to others as to how to do certain things the “right” way. We don’t trust our instincts as to how to do something the “correct” way.
The thing is, rarely is there just one “correct” way to do something. There may be more expedient ways or more beautiful ways of doing something but unless that is part of the project it doesn’t really matter how you do something as long as you get it done.
So often when coaching clients, I find myself in conversations about there concerns that they are not doing things the “right” way or that they can’t get started on something because they don’t know the “right” way to get started.
My question is always, “Do you know someway or anyway to get started?” If the answer is “yes” then I encourage them to just start and forget this perceived notion of “correct” ways. Often I encounter resistance because they are still caught up in the idea of the “right” way.
If the “right” way is so important, get the project done anyway you can and then find out the “right” way for the future but after the pending project is done.
An example is a workshop I presented a while ago. I thought I had to start from scratch to create the workshop the “right” way. Make each section, while a different topic, set up the exact same way.
First off, since I had worked with much of the material before, starting from scratch was a waste of time. Secondly, who said each section had to be designed the same way? Me. Well that is ridiculous, each section should be designed based on how best to deliver the material.
Most importantly I was making the assumption that many of us make that other people’s ways had to be superior to my way. This assumption is chronically made by people affected by ADHD when it comes to activities and tasks that are extremely structural in nature despite the fact that our way is just as good a way. In fact in some cases even better because it is the way that works best for us.
This is summed up by one of my favorite quotes:
If you can’t fly then run,
if you can’t run then walk,
if you can’t walk then crawl,
but whatever you do
you have to keep moving forward.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.