Let’s face it, managing your finances for the average person can be boring and challenging, but what about the extra challenge for those who have ADHD?
Well first of all, what is ADHD?
ADHD is a developmental impairment of the brain’s executive functions, which are essentially the brain’s self-management system. People with ADHD may have trouble with impulse-control, focusing, and organisation.
If you think about that close friend or family member that appears to be nailing their finances, what’s the bet they are disciplined, have their eye on the prize and run their financial systems with military precision? It’s probably quite likely, so how do those of us living with these executive function challenges set ourselves up for success?
- Keep it simple
- Automate the heck out of it
- Talk it out
- Have an accountability partner
- Have a vision of your future
Keep it simple
Having elaborate systems and processes is not ideal for those of us who struggle with executive function. One of the key challenges for the majority of those with ADHD is being organised so the easier it is to complete the task, the more likely we are to follow through.
Automate the heck out of it
We’re also not amazing with consistency so use the tools that work for you to stick with the basics. This may be setting a recurring calendar invite to check on your budget and your own financial progress. Don’t forget that your banking app is your friend so set up those recurring automatic payments for bills, savings and let technology work for you.
Talk it out
It’s very common for those who have ADHD to be verbal processors, which just means that we need to talk out loud to learn what we think or feel about something. Having someone to bounce ideas off could be a great start to developing suggested frameworks and processes and then setting up the systems that work for you to manage your finances.
Have an accountability partner
If you’re finding it hard to follow through, recruit an accountability partner. This may be a paid professional, but it could simply be a friend, partner, colleague or parent. You could implement some systems and processes together or you could just ask your accountability buddy to check in on your progress. Most of us with ADHD won’t let someone else down, but we’re quite good at procrastinating, especially when it comes to areas of our lives that don’t fill us with passion.
Have a vision for your future
Having a clear idea of what you want to achieve in your life is a great motivation. For some of us, we like to write this down but if our big goals are scribbled in a notebook that gets tucked away in a drawer we’re going to forget what we’re looking to achieve. This is especially true of those with ADHD as we have working memory issues so we need visual ques and reminders to assist us. Why not create a vision board to remind you of what you are looking to achieve in life. This will assist with keeping on track and you’ll have some of your own pretty artwork to appreciate too.
Listen to our podcast # 26 ADHD Money Talk where Emma discusses with David De Witt some of the basis of managing finances for those who ADHD.