reflections, week 32

hi y’all! forgive the all-over-the-place nature of this post, as we’re having a hella ADHD kinda day today.

write something every day (except Shabbat). this has been tough, but I’ve been a little better this past week and I have managed to be productive while still taking time for myself. right now, I’m trying to outline some stuff for projects I’ve been working on to figure out what I should focus on next—I’ve tried to stick to one project at a time but I think that, with the dissertation coming up, I’m going to have to get more comfortable with multitasking. I did also spend some time preparing my bullet journal and thinking through some upcoming blog posts, so I think I’m in a better spot for the next two months. we’ll see how this goes!

be better about money. the other shoe has dropped with this a bit, finally—I ended up going HAM on a Sephora order this past weekend and I rounded out my Sims 4 collection, doing more personal spending in a weekend than I had for most of the summer. but I’m still in a decent place for bills this month and into the next, so I don’t feel too terrible about it… just have to make sure it doesn’t become a habit! I also know I’m getting more and more nervous about not having a contract for the fall yet, and J and I are considering synagogue membership, so the summer’s leaner budget might extend further into the school year than we thought… we’ll see how it goes! but we’re making payments on our cruise and having that vacation to look forward to is pulling us through some tense times!

self-validate more. who would’ve thought that this, the thing I was most scared by, would end up being a strength this year? I definitely did not think so! but I think I’ve finally reached a point in my life where I feel confident in my work and in what I bring to the table—and I’m much more willing to shoot my shot. whether I make said shots(s), however, is still to be seen…

lunch break’s over so back to work it is—until next time!

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reflections, week 21

skipped another week because things have been even wilder… I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, now—I’m hopeful but nervous, and I’m just trying to put one foot in front of the other until then.

write something every day (except Shabbat). really fell off the wagon for this for the month, not just this week—from an abandoned bullet journal to various works in progress that have seen no action whatsoever, and I haven’t even been updating my word count spreadsheet. and, as you can see on the blog, it hasn’t been any better here! the truth is that this has been a really difficult month for me on a personal level, and these struggles have consumed every waking moment. it looks like we might be on a path to some resolution, which I hope will allow me to take the reins of my life in the last week of the month!

be better about money. this has been so-so over the past couple of weeks—I think I’ve been doing more spending to try and fill the hole that I’m feeling because of these personal conflicts. I have tried to not buy things that are too frivolous, but the truth is that I did not need all this new baking equipment or the ingredients to test like 10 new recipes (recap coming soon, once I crack the code for the brazo de reina)… I just got them because they made me feel better. I have also replaced my laptop and I’m waiting for the new one to be delivered—but I don’t feel guilty about that because I have had my current laptop for seven years and I love her dearly but she’s ready for retirement.

self-validate more. I’ve realized that there is still a part of this which I am struggling with and which is not so much giving myself credit for the work that I have done or trusting myself to do things—but more about trusting myself and my instincts and my needs without needing anyone’s permission. I really thought that I had gotten over my issues trusting myself but honestly it’s another day, another way in which complex PTSD continues to impact my life. I think that realizing ADHD is part of my life has made it a lot easier to give myself room to struggle with staying organized at home and come up with more regimented systems to support myself in executive functioning—but now it’s time to spread that to being kind and supportive of myself regarding whatever I need for life after trauma.

throughout these dark few weeks, I have been incredibly blessed to have friends and family near and far offer their support in a myriad of ways. if nothing else, that has been a beautiful part of all of this—to know that, even if sometimes I am writing here just for myself, I am not in fact alone. 🙂

reflections, week 18

it has been a wild time around here, seeing as I’m officially in my thirties! also, this is the last week of my last class for my doctoral program—next up is the comprehensive exam this summer and then it’s dissertation time!

write something every day (except Shabbat). this was not amazing this past week, but the days I did write were really good! I wrote a fair amount and I am excited about the projects I’ve been working on, so I’m hoping this will be better next month!

be better about money. this continues to be pretty decent right now because I have a cushion thanks to that tax refund—I just need to keep a cushion so that things remain this easy moving forward! I will try to keep it together throughout May, but we’ll see how the summer goes…

self-validate more. having my work wife out on field trips and other meetings meant that I have had to do more stuff independently and validate my own work this past week—so I’m still doing well with this so far! recognizing that ADHD is a thing in my life and dealing with the things that are due to ADHD but I had previously considered personal failures has also gone a long way in this department. 🙂

until the next time, when things are hopefully less wild and I don’t have to be oh-so-brief!

getting tasks done with adhd

something that has always bothered me about my executive dysfunction—and which preventing me from accepting that there was an issue rather than just laziness on my part—is that I do not often struggle to complete tasks, no matter how difficult… but I always struggle to start them. (this is especially the case during bipolar downswings, where motivation is at its lowest and nothing seems rewarding enough to bribe myself with.)

my struggle with task initiation is not unique among fellow ADHD peeps, I have learned; in fact, there are many articles describing it and giving tips. however, I have found that years of maladaptive behaviors on my part mean that some of those tips do not work for me—so I figured I would share what does work! while I used my personal examples for each of these, I have also seen some of my students be successful with these… but, as with everything, YMMV!

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reflections, week 14

I thought last week was difficult—but nothing could have prepared me for this week. I had a pretty intense PTSD episode (post incoming), did some laundry, and tried to keep my head afloat. on a bright side, the walkthrough happened this past Monday and it seems to have gone quite well!

write something every day (except Shabbat). I actually did write every day except Shabbat this past week, not even including academic work, and it was super exciting! I’ve started Camp NaNoWriMo strong—okay, it’s only three days, but I don’t usually start on the 1st so I’m giving myself credit—and I’m actually excited about this story! we’ll see how this goes!

be better about money. I got my tax refund today and I’ve never been more excited to see a deposit in my savings. I’m trying to keep at least 40% of it in savings, so we’ll see how that goes—but all I did with that money today was pay this month’s bills early (aaaaaaand buy tickets for Endgame for myself and some of my closest friends since it comes out my birthday weekend)! I’m gonna also buy some supplies for my classroom and some hair products from ULTA because I’ve been waiting forever to buy them. but overall, I feel pretty excited about making good money decisions lately, including accepting a summer job that I know will be more work but will pay way better than my other option.

self-validate more. my therapist actually remarked on this just this past Monday, as I told her about my PTSD episode and managed not just to avoid negative self-talk but also give myself props for how I handled things. I’m also sitting on that post (I’ve literally got five in the queue), but I’m trying to figure out what makes the most sense when (and what I can finish first).

until the next time, in whichever post that might be!

reflections, week 13

this past week has been… rough. I don’t know if I’m just taking my therapist’s retirement harder than I thought I was or if PSAT bootcamp at work is just ruining my whole vibe, but I’ve dissociated more in the past week than I have all year so far—and I wasn’t stellar on my goals, either.

write something every day (except Shabbat). this was, for the first time this year, a total fail this past week. I wrote what was essential for grad school because I absolutely had to—but there were way too many days where I went, “I could write right now, but I could also just play this new The Sims 4 game pack…” and that just was not a productive approach. I’m hoping to try Camp NaNoWriMo (yet again, lol) next month just to see if being surrounded by other people who are excited and writing will get me, well, writing.

I’ve also gone back to the idea of trying to establish a routine. I really think part of the issue is also that I do so many other things sitting at that spot on my computer, so my ADHD brain is struggling to conceptualize writing when we don’t have to as a task we do there—but sitting literally anywhere else would give me issues breathing (due to the cat being all over every other surface) or just completely isolate me from everyone else in the house. So I think I might compromise by getting an old netbook back into shape and using that to be my writing computer? If I keep it plugged in near my other computer, it might be easy enough to switch between the two and focus on writing for a little bit.

be better about money. this hasn’t been stellar this whole month, to be honest—I made the grave mistake of being too excited for my tax refund and, since it has yet to arrive, I am struggling. I have to spend this weekend getting caught up on my finances and setting a plan for next month, or my 30th birthday plans are not going to be the only thing that I have to drop next month. on a bright side, I have remained strong on all my canceled subscriptions!

self-validate more. this was exceedingly difficult this week because I did so poorly on the other two resolutions and I have, in general, been in a really weird emotional place lately. however, despite some negative self-talk rearing its head this week, I’ve managed to not berate myself or go into a self-loathing spiral—and I’ll take that win, damn it.

until the next time, in which I will be discussing my issues with my nemesis, the laundry!

today I experienced… executive function????

okay, y’all, today has been wild in the best of ways because I have actually knocked out just about everything on my to-do list!

the best part, at least for me, is that I did not even have to give myself an intense pep talk, or bribe myself, or even do anything other than decide to do a thing and then do it. it’s seriously life-changing to remember that such a thing is possible because I honestly do not know when was the last time I felt like this was. I literally worked for about seven hours and did my laundry, cleaned my room, wrote three papers (so I’m now ahead in my grad class!) and did some grading!

(granted, I did not a whole lot over the weekend, other than writing a brief paper last night, so perhaps it was the actually resting that did it? either way, I am hella, hella grateful)

here’s to more functional days, y’all.