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  • Writer's pictureLaryssa Levesque

How To Improve Your Focus If You Have ADHD

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD is a disorder that is often associated with children and teens. But it can actually impact people at any age and often goes undiagnosed in adults.  ADHD is complicated and presents a variety of unique challenges for those who struggle with it, one of which is maintaining focus and productivity. For those with ADHD, it may often feel like there’s nothing you can do — but that’s not the case! This blog post explores several tips to improve focus when managing ADHD.

how to improve your focus if you have adhd

What Is ADHD?

ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by challenges in areas such as attention, impulse control, and hyperactivity, as well as comorbid issues like anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. There are different types of ADHD based on which types of symptoms are most dominant in an individual- hyperactive, inattentive, and a combined type.


While living with ADHD does create certain difficulties, individuals with ADHD also often demonstrate incredible creativity, energy, and unique perspectives. The key is learning how to channel these traits constructively through various strategies and tools to improve focus and productivity.

Tips To Improve Focus If You Have ADHD

Embrace Structure and Routine

If you’re struggling to focus, establishing a structured daily routine can provide a framework for individuals with ADHD. Consistent schedules help create a sense of predictability, reducing anxiety and making it easier to transition between tasks. Try creating specific time blocks for work, breaks, and leisure to optimize productivity.

Break Tasks Into Smaller Steps

Large tasks can feel overwhelming for individuals with ADHD, which can sometimes cause something called ADHD paralysis. This reaction can lead to avoiding tasks or procrastinating. Try breaking tasks down into smaller, more manageable steps. This not only makes the workload seem less daunting but also allows for a sense of accomplishment with each completed phase.

It can also help to break working time into intervals, typically 25 minutes, separated by short breaks. This structured approach is referred to as the Pomodoro technique and takes advantage of the brain's natural rhythm, enhancing focus during short bursts and preventing burnout.

Create a Dedicated Workspace

Do you have a particular space set up for work? If not, this could be impacting your ability to focus. Try to create a designated area for work or study to signal the brain that it's time to focus. Minimize distractions in this space and make it visually conducive to concentration. You can even personalize the workspace to enhance a sense of ownership and commitment to tasks.

Incorporate Physical Activity

Another strategy to help improve well-being, focus and productivity when you have ADHD is exercise! Regular physical exercise has been shown to significantly improve focus and cognitive function in individuals with ADHD. Try integrating short bursts of physical activity into your daily routine, whether it's a brisk walk, stretching, or quick exercises to rejuvenate the mind. Do whatever physical exercise works best for you, as long as you get that body moving! 

Practice Mindfulness and Meditation

During moments when you are really struggling to manage your ADHD, mindfulness techniques and meditation can be invaluable for calming the mind and improving focus. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, incorporate mindfulness practices, such as deep breathing exercises or guided meditation, which can be useful for enhancing self-awareness and sharpening attention. These techniques can also be useful even when you aren’t feeling overwhelmed, in fact, it's best to practice mindfulness skills in a neutral calm state rather than reactively when we are trying to focus.

Use Technology Wisely

When you are living with ADHD, technology can be both a blessing and a curse. It can cause stress and be a distraction if you allow it to, but it can also be used to help improve your focus and productivity. Try to leverage technology to your advantage! Use productivity apps, calendars, and reminders to help you stay organized. You can also set alarms for task transitions or use apps designed specifically for individuals with ADHD to streamline organization and time management.

Establish Clear Goals

If you are living with ADHD, creating clearly defined goals can help you manage more easily by providing a sense of purpose and direction. Try various strategies such as breaking down long-term objectives into short-term goals so you can make it easier to track progress and stay motivated. Finally, make sure to celebrate achievements, both big and small, along the way to reinforce a positive mindset!

Prioritize Self-Care

Self-care is important for managing many mental health challenges and ADHD is no exception! Adequate sleep, a balanced diet, and regular self-care activities are so important to maintaining your well-being. Lack of sleep or poor nutrition can exacerbate challenges in focus and concentration. Prioritize self-care to ensure that you are valuing your own mental health and happiness and giving yourself the best chance to succeed. 

Explore ADHD-Friendly Strategies or Tools

Investigate and implement ADHD-friendly strategies, such as the use of fidget tools or white noise machines. Visual aids are also powerful tools for individuals with ADHD who want to improve their focus. Using calendars, to-do lists, and colour-coded schedules can turn abstract concepts into tangible, manageable tasks. Visual cues provide clarity, helping to prioritize and organize activities more effectively. Experiment with various techniques and tools to identify what works best for individual preferences and needs. What works for each person can be different, so you have to concentrate on what works best for you. 

Seek Professional Support

If you are struggling with ADHD, it can help to collaborate with mental health professionals, including therapists, psychologists, or psychiatrists specializing in ADHD. They can provide tailored strategies, behavioural interventions, and, if necessary, medication management to support focus and overall well-being. Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to ask for help if you need it; asking for help is a sign of strength and commitment to your personal development. 

The Bottom Line

Living with ADHD comes with certain hurdles, but it doesn't have to limit your potential to succeed and be happy. By embracing your strengths, adopting effective strategies, and cultivating a supportive environment, those with ADHD can navigate the challenges and harness creativity and energy to achieve amazing things. Whether implementing structured routines, utilizing visual tools, or prioritizing self-care, the journey toward enhanced focus and productivity is a personal exploration that can lead to profound self-discovery. 

If you or someone you know is living with ADHD and you think that speaking to a therapist would help, Inner Growth is here for you! Our compassionate and caring therapists in Barrie, ON can help you to explore and address your concerns and help you develop coping strategies that work for you. If you have any questions, want to schedule a free initial consultation, or you want to book a full session with one of our therapists please contact us


Our team of online and in-person counsellors and psychotherapists in Barrie provide quality and effective mental health counselling services near you in Barrie and virtually across Ontario to individuals (6+), couples and families. We also offer an Affordable Therapy Program that provides counselling services in Barrie to individuals (12+) who are facing financial challenges that need mental health support.



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