Hi. I am jumping in here. I haven't introduced myself yet, but have checked out this tribe a few times. I'm not real active on the boards so my apologies for just barging in and begging for help, but I really need some advice.
Unfortunately, I need it very quickly, so I don't know if anyone will read this soon enough to help. But here goes...
I need help talking with my supervisior and administrator about my ADD and my job performance.
Background. I work in healthcare. I have a great job which is quite flexible and quite interesting. But with the flexibility comes a lot of change, in schedule and routine, etc. Which I struggle a bit to keep up with, but it's good b/c it keeps me interested.
But I have a really, really hard time with punctuality. I always have been time-challenged. I struggled to be on time every single day. And I am late more often than not. Most of the time it's 5 or 10 min. But sometimes it's longer. And I'm not just late getting to work in the morning, I have trouble with lunch and dinner breaks, etc. It's been a problme my whole life and I still fight it.
I don't need any advice on what to do to be on time. (Well, I might, but that's not the reason I'm posting.) I try lots of stuff and it helps for awhile, but eventually I get distracted or the new cues/alarms/reminders/whatever become too familiar and cease to motivate me. When I'm focusing really hard on it, I do fairly well. But as soon as I let my guard down even a little, I start to slide.
The same thing goes for other attention-based elements of work. I can lose track of time at work too. Or get absorbed in something and not hear what someone is saying. Or if I hear it, it just "goes right in one ear and out the other". Or I hear and start to do the task and then something pulls me away and I don't get back on task. And this is the same as the tardy thing. With great effort, I can compensate. But as soon as I'm not focusing on those efforts, I am back at square one.
And that's the problem. I do great awhile. Then I start to slip. Then people start getting annoyed. Then eventually they're annoyed enough that my supervisor talks to me. Then I focus super hard and pull it all together for awhile, but I can't keep up the superhuman effort forever. I have a dh working full-time and four kids and some assorted life stresses that demand my attention too. When I have to focus so much energy on work, I can't focus as much in other places. And eventually those other parts of my life start to get crazy and disorganized enough that I can no longer maintain the intensive focus at work.
And you can see where this is going right? It's around and around the same old tired track. So now my supervisor is frustrated. Why can't she just talk to me once and have it stay "fixed". She is frustrated (and everyone else) that I do fine for awhile and then she has to talk to me again.
I understand. I really do. I feel frustrated too. But I *know* there's no FIX for me. I just have to keep plugging along and doing the best I can and trying not to overextend myself so there's enough of me to perform well in all areas, etc. And I'm totally NOT trying to make excuses. I'm not saying "this is the way I am so take it or leave it". But I know that I will always struggle. And so I don't know how to respond to this. I don't know what to say.
My supervisor asked what she could do to help. I said that I thought I would benefit from more frequent reminders or feedback, so that if my performance started to slip noticeably, then I would be given a reminder *sooner* so people wouldn't get so frustrated and I could maybe focus back in faster. But she just says, "but I talk to you and it changes only a little while and then it's back to the same thing". And that's where she doesn't understand. She thinks I should just change *permanently* as a result of being talked to. But I can't. I'm trying. But I would need complete rewiring. Yet, I am trying. The evidence of that is that I *do* respond to feedback. If I can't make permanent change, then is it possible that *ongoing* feedback might be a reasonable solution?
Any other ideas?
For the record, my job record is otherwise great. Patients and staff like me. I'm perceived as a hard worker, patient, cheerful, energetic, approachable, sensitive, smart, etc. All good reports in everthing else. Just no sense of time and very distractable so I get off-task or forget stuff.
How do I talk to them w/o sounding like I'm just making excuses for bad behavior or laziness? How do I let them know I care a lot, but I struggle really hard to achieve this? Can anyone think of ways I can work better with my employer/staff/peers in this regard?