It has been my experience that, as ADHDers, we tend to get overwhelmed by simple but tedious tasks… like doing the dishes. The underlying brain chemistry reason is that we are tortured by boredom due to our lack of inherent dopamine in our prefrontal cortex. And, beyond that, we have a history of these things being unpleasant and seeming to take forever. But… we aren’t so good with time, right. I would suggest an experiment. And, to practice what I preach, I executed said experiment today.
Being the former chef that I am, I took my morning off today to make sausage and duck confit from scratch. The picture below was the result of the preparation. (Bear in mind that I do clean while cooking to not leave a huge mess, but I was essentially using all of this at once while multitasking.)
I found the kitchen overwhelming. Do you? But my experience told me two things. One, it wasn’t actually that bad. Two, go the the gym first then clean up when I have more dopamine, serotonin, and a sense of accomplishment on board. So I did that.
But here’s the real experiment. When I got back I made a sandwich, which was delicious but slightly added to the mess. Then I started a timer. In fact, this overwhelming task of cleaning the kitchen, wiping the surfaces, doing the dishes, and making myself a quesadilla for lunch, pt. II took a grand total of 14 minutes and 13 seconds. My reaction to this is: No big deal! I can handle 14 minutes of boring to have the clean kitchen. 14 minutes is concrete and not overwhelming. It is doable for me.
I will admit that I have the benefit of knowing that it wouldn’t be as bad as I thought it would be because I’ve done this little experiment before. I’ve done it in several aspects of life, but often as in regards to dishes and clean up. Try it!
Standard Disclaimer: In an effort to foil my own perfectionist tendencies, I do not edit my posts much… if at all. Please and typos, mistakes, grammatical errors, or awkward phrasing. I focus on getting my content down. An imperfect post completed is better than a perfect post that goes unposted.