Because of how the ADHD brain functions, people with this condition commonly experience several workplace challenges that can negatively impact their performance. These challenges include: Time/Task Management, Distractibility/Impulsivity; Working Memory; Organization; and Communication/Building Relationships. So the question is: How do these proven brain challenges effect real work accomplishments on the job?

In this article we’re gong to talk about: Organization

Often people with ADHD find the word organization makes them cringe. Reminders of the past haunt them – many attempts but few successes. Or living in denial of how they feel about it and pretending not to care. They have resigned themselves to their fate.

People with ADHD can be confused about organization and what it means to be organized. They gave up long ago trying to adopt the organizational strategies and standards that were so often in their face. At an early age they learned that the ability to be organized that seemed to come naturally to others, just didn’t work for them. They were never taught how to adopt a way to get organized that fit their style of operating – the operating style of someone with ADHD.

My clients have taught me some key ingredients to becoming a better organized person with ADHD. So I will share with you what has worked best for the people I have encountered during my years as and ADHD coach, as well as those ideas that have worked best for me personally. My hope is that you will find something of value in these proven strategies. I want you to feel less anxious about being organized, and therefore better about being you.

Before I list these key ingredients, I want to clear up a misconception about organization. I have found that for people with ADHD it is best to consider organization as: “THAT WAY of doing things that make living YOUR LIFE more easy and effortless so that YOU can successfully pursue your passions, talents and interests with complete confidence.” No “one-size-fits-all formula” can take the place of what fits your unique way of doing things. Adopt only those habits that work for you regardless of what others advise. Spend less time changing yourself and more time changing the people around you.


#1 - Learn the following mantra and always follow it: “If it isn’t written, it isn’t real” In other words if you don’t write it down, there is no guarantee it will happen or you will remember it.
#2 - Write EVERYTHING down. Most people cannot depend on their memory. What you think you’ll never forget today is gone by tomorrow. Don’t worry, you’ll get used to it.
#3 - Write it all in one agenda or planner book, in one place on the computer, or on one portable hand held device. Choose and use only one. Life is way too confusing and fast paced to have things in more than one place.
#4 - Work on only one new idea a week. When you focus on instilling only one new habit at a time, your chance of adopting it increases exponentially. When you attempt to take on two or more new ideas a week, your chances of succeeding at them drop by the same percentages.
#5 - Plan your week in advance. Sunday afternoon or evening is a good time to do your planning for the coming week. Use a planner or agenda book where you can open it up, lay it flat, and see the whole week at a glance. Step 1 is to begin your planning by putting yourself in the week first by including the things that nourish you and make you happy. Step 2 is to include your weekly routine and the things that don’t change from week to week. Step 3 is your opportunity to put in your unique appointments and events for the week. Finally, Step 4 is to stand back and see how your week looks. This is your chance to switch things around to suit you better. Best of all, this is your opportunity to step back and see how you are living your life. That is really what you are looking at after all.
#6 - Always get someone to support you through the process of getting better organized. It’s a fact that when you involve one other person to hold you accountable and support your growth along the way, you are much more likely to succeed.
#7 - Get a handle on your clutter once and for all. Create systems to control it. Routinely, like clockwork, complete 5 to 15 minutes each day of (a) “put away”, (b) “throw away” or (c) “review later” (when you can’t decide). Get to your review later folder within the week.

Author's Bio: 

Founded by Carol Gignoux, ADD Insights, LLC is devoted to helping people with ADHD live confidently and well. Carol’s passion is to provide services that transform the lives of people with ADHD. Her mission is to work efficiently and effectively to provide clients with answers to any and all issues and challenges they are having being capable, reliable, and productive, whether or not they have been diagnosed with ADHD.

Carol Gignoux is well established as an expert within the ADHD coaching, consulting and training profession with over 35 years experience working with ADHD and over 16 years as a professional coach. Carol and her team of experts specialize in coaching teens and adults who want to move beyond their issues with ADHD, and develop the skills and confidence to achieve better results in their academic, professional, and personal lives.