Tips for succeeding with ADHD?

It was the third grade. I remember little of the doctor’s visits and even less of my immediate reaction, but I do remember the medicine. Ritalin, which is prescribed commonly for what is called ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder soon came in little bottles. I remember taking them and feeling different. I had a routine schedule during school, and it helped me keep focus sometimes during the hours of that schedule. Afterwards came college with its classes happening across what seemed like an entire day, and I realized that I just couldn’t take a pill and keep my thoughts on track for the whole day. So, I learned to teach myself to focus.


I had to study my learning habits. This process is called metacognition.

Here’s a quick experiment to figure out your own learning patterns:

  • First, think about how you best take in knowledge. Sit down and write the three learning types – visual, auditory, and kinesthetic and find which applies most to you.
  • Next, look at actual tangibles to hone your style. Refer back to old notes and see which style you find most functional. Try to find a pattern of useful study times and areas. Can you study with music or background noise? Do you need complete quiet?

I know that during my daily routine when ideas or tasks come to me I find it difficult to pull them out later when I need it. Here are few things I do:

  • I buy apps like DUE that serve as daily and month reminders and allow me to put in a quick thought to myself to come back to the task when I need to.
  • I often carry a journal or notebook with me to write down thoughts in shorthand. I have learned that these reminders and lists really help me.
  • I have also learned that I’m very visual and tactile. This means that jotting down drawings while reading and taking notes goes a long way for me.

Taking control of your learning process doesn’t have a one size fix all. Find what works for you. Try to think of what engages you most while in class and studying. Are you a visual, auditory, or kinesthetic (tactile/touch) learner? Do detailed notes work best to review or do you find that shorthand with page numbers and mnemonics do the trick?

Once you have a profile of what works for you then you can truly take control of your learning.


Written by Cody M.,

Subject Coach – English

Novastar Prep


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