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Working with Attention Deficit Disorder - Tips on How to Cope in the Workplace

written by: jamesj • edited by: Paul Arnold • updated: 12/24/2010

Working with attention deficit disorder can be a huge challenge, but having effective strategies - such as a schedule, deadlines and goals - can keep you focused. Your ADHD can also give you numerous advantages in the workplace.

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    Working with Attention Deficit Disorder: Scheduling

    Having a schedule and sticking with it is crucial for the person with ADHD. A schedule can keep an ADHD person on track, and helps them avoid distractions that are so alluring at times. Set a reasonable schedule with deadlines or goals throughout the day and refer to them so you are able to measure your progress. Celebrate the victories as each goal or deadline is reached.

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    ADHD at work

    People with ADHD often struggle with working, and some have trouble even holding a job. There are disadvantages for ADHD people that can cause workplace problems, but there are also advantages. Working with attention deficit disorder can be a challenge, but with some planning a person can minimize the effects of the negatives and make the positive aspects even better.

    The problem of working with attention deficit disorder is that someone with the condition can be easily distracted. People with ADHD tend to forget things, are disorganized, and at times make errors because of inattention. It is difficult for an ADHD person to stay with a task that is not interesting to them.

    To help deal with the disadvantages an ADHD person needs to have an effective strategy and several coping mechanisms.

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    Organizing

    People who have attention deficit disorder have a hard time organizing themselves, and may need help from someone else. While it may go against their natural instincts, it is very important for an ADHD person to be organized as this will help them to stay on track and avoid distractions.

    Make use of calendars or electronic assistants to organize activities and make lists so you can check off what needs to be done. If your bookshelves are a mess you can use color coding for files or even for book genres.

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    Routine

    Routine is very important to help one stay focused and avoid exposure to confusion and frustration. Routines can become habits, which is beneficial because you will automatically perform some of these activities without thinking - they become second nature.

    A routine is also a reference point. You may have some distractions, but the routine gives you a place to come back to, or a means of getting back on track with the task at hand. Scheduling your day, and even parts of the day, is a way to make order of the chaos that many with ADHD see every day. People with ADHD see endless choices, and find it hard to get started because of that, but with a solid routine, you have your starting point.

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    Advantages of ADHD in the Workplace

    Now to conclude this article, let's take a look at some of the plus points of ADHD in the workplace. The major advantage of having ADHD is that people with this condition tend to be creative. ADHD people often think in ways others do not, and can sometimes see solutions to thorny or seemingly intractable problems. Another advantage is that of hyperfocus. Even though ADHD people tend to be distracted, once they are focused they stay focused and it is very hard to get them unfocused again. Such concentration is a valuable commodity in many careers.

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