Friday, March 2, 2012

My new job: getting paid to have ADHD

I'm leaving my desk job but I am NOT leaving the world of the working, nor am I going to be joining medical studies seeking adults with ADHD.

But I AM giving myself permission to, well, do what I do naturally, which is do like, three things at once at all times.

I have spent my whole life fighting this, because of the pressure to figure out what one wants to do when one grows up, and it is often implied that you must be a _________ in order to answer that question. Well I AM going to answer that question. I am an entrepreneur. I am a woman of many hats. I am an idea generator. I am an operationalizer.

The bottom line is that as long as I am also a mortgage payer and grocery buyer and dog/cat/lizard food purchaser and procurer of beer and occasional sweet gifts for my husband and children, I am also a: SUCCESS.

HA. How'd ya like THAT word?

So I am further cultivating and deepening my events business. I am picking up marketing work which allows me to further use the skills I use for my own business, in applying them creatively for other people's businesses. And I am rekindling my creative business (I sew things and I sell them).

I am now four weeks into the experiment (as I phase out of my desk job...last week is next week) and guess what? It's working. Money is coming in. Almost enough money to totally replace my desk job paycheck with the realistic potential for more to come.

I cannot write this entry for an ADHD blog though, without addressing a couple of things that are probably screaming in the front of your mind as loudly as they were in my own before I made a plan: OMG, HOW WILL YOU STAY ORGANIZED AND BUDGET YOUR TIME AND KEEP THINGS ORGANIZED AND GET STUFF DONE AND - 

Yeah's the thing: I am always, ALWAYS more productive, focused and organized when I am interested in what I'm doing, when I am allowed to use my creativity and by creativity I don't always mean making art I sometimes mean creatively thinking to produce business systems and solutions...I am a good organizer when given the freedom to do so, because I find that kind of thing engaging.

I have created systems for myself for EVERYTHING. Some I anticipated a need for in advance...some I have had to create in a moment of realization.

I got a larger bag to carry around with me. It has a giant middle pocket for big stuff (my laptop sleeve fits in there) - it has two large side pockets, one for my wallet, one for my makeup. It has a spot for pens and a spot for my phone that are right next to each other and easily accessible. I have end pockets that are perfect for my camera, and my "cords": computer cord, camera cord, phone cord. I also got a new wallet that has room for everything that I need and which allows me to replace and remove things easily (if it's not easy, I won't use it).

Then...THEN...I got folders for each project and stuck them in my bag. I have a paper heavy life and I need all of those notes and papers and such and I need to have them with I file them in my bag right into marked folders. When the number of folders got larger I got more folders and I got one of those accordion files that squishes - it holds my folders AND it fits in my bag. I also got clear, protective envelopes to put things in like bank deposits (to keep personal and business deposits separate). I also got two notebooks for logging my freelance hours, one for each "area" of life that I needed one for.

And THEN: I have been really meticulous about putting things where they go, with the understanding that I will only screw myself if I don't. And I enjoy using the systems because I'm proud of myself for thinking them up in the first place.

As for keeping records...I have my two log books for just writing things down...and I have been rocking my online spreadsheet for my events. ROCKING IT. Entering all the info.'s working.

My immediate goal is an income of a certain number that we shall not disclose, but once that goal is reached, my next goal - is hiring someone else to do some of the grunt work. Just a few hours a week. Because nobody, and certainly nobody with ADHD actually LIKES to do stuff like data entry and filing for longer than they have to. Oh I'll do it if I have to. But I'm very motivated to try to have someone that's not me do it.

In conclusion: I am getting paid to have ADHD. To have it, to acknowledge it, to plan for the ideas that my wild brain gives me, and to anticipate obstacles that ADHD may throw at me (as well as the ones that life itself will throw), to figure out how to work with, not against, those obstacles, and to simply get the job done. Doing three different things that all satisfy me in different ways. Because I'm a ____________. Ha!

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