Don't Forget About Your Resolutions. Improving Your Executive Function Skills Can Help You Remember.

The new year is a great time to turn over a new leaf. Keeping your New Year's Resolutions can be harder than making them, and that's probably especially true for anyone diagnosed with #ADHD, neurodiverse conditions, or who simply never developed executive function skills.

Perhaps looking back on 2023, you noticed some difficulty fulfilling basic responsibilities, managing your time, or organizing your life. These are executive functions.

Executive function skills are the basic toolset people draw on for success in school or at their job. ADHD directly affects an individual's ability to perform these tasks and learn these skills.

If you're struggling with executive function skills like keeping your attention on the task at hand or keeping track of your schedule, whether or not you are diagnosed with ADHD, there are methods for addressing these problems. 

Here are three simple ways you can tackle the challenges and build your executive function skills.

  • Creating routines can help train your brain to complete tasks. These routines can be as simple as making a habit of writing out a plan for your work or making lists that can be checked off. Don’t forget to use your speech-to-text features on your phone to help get your thoughts out! The goal is to create a routine, so it becomes a natural way of approaching tasks. Once you don't have to think about making a list, you can stop wondering what needs to be done and look over your notes. You've created a positive habit! #habits
  • Give yourself a break…a brain break! Your brain can be tired out if you spend too much time on a difficult task. Resting your brain with simple breaks like getting up for a glass or taking a short walk can help focus your attention. Concentrating on a single task without a break won't help complete the task any faster. Remind yourself to let your brain rest. Consider setting a timer for fifteen or twenty minutes and taking a break when the alarm goes off. #brainbreak
  • Plan and prioritize the tasks that matter most. Writing out your plan can help you streamline the tasks that need to be accomplished. Thinking them through before you start will improve your ability to finish them. Have a planner and outline what you need to do, and feel free to cross off a task when you finish. #taskmaster

Not everyone is going to find success with these on their own. But you don't have to do it all alone!

Whether you're a student trying to learn these behaviors, a parent of a student who struggles with their academics, or a professional working through these problems in the workplace, there are tutors and coaches dedicated to helping problem-solve executive skills. 

If you're thinking about seeking help learning new executive function skills, talk to Dr. Jo Abramo for a free consultation to find out if executive function tutoring is the right choice for you.